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Economics & Finance - BLOG

How to produce and deliver a winning presentation Part 1: Prepared Goals

Steve Knight |

The goal of my articles to date here on the LinkedIn Influencers platform has been to help you slow down and guide you on the journey inwards, to discover your true Self, to help you be the Captain of your Ship.

Photo: Steve Knight hosting British Chamber of Commerce Awards in the Painted Hall, Old Royal Naval College, Greenwich, London

I have discussed that when you release the person you are truly capable of being you won’t have to look for that On switch when you start to present or communicate because You will be On all the time.

This journey inwards is something I will absolutely, definitely, 100% return to, because the journey of self discovery is never ending. Each and every day we should be learning something new about our Self.

Right now though I would like to start a series of articles to help you produce and present the best presentations you have ever made. Presentations that are meticulously planned and designed to inspire, to influence, to encourage, to make a positive impact, to motivate, to lead, to create change, to rally your audience to action.

It goes without saying that people need to be convinced by what you are saying.

Whether you are…

  • Presenting at a conference
  • Pitching to potential clients for that crucial contract
  • Informing the general public through the broadcast media and online media platforms
  • Launching a new product or service, or
  • Delivering a key message to a team, to the board, or to stakeholders

There is no such thing as information only; you need to persuade your audience and your stakeholders that your information is worth listening to, that it’s accurate and that it matters to them. This requires the winning combination of the right content and the right delivery; the message and the messenger.


Photo: Steve Knight hosting British Chamber of Commerce Awards in the Painted Hall, Old Royal Naval College, Greenwich, London

There is a strict code of conduct and order of doing things to ensure you maximize your effectiveness and seize the opportunity.

So here we go with an easy to remember system and phrase to help you take the steps in the right order…

The Rules

  • Prepared Goals
  • Command Attention
  • with Passion
  • from You

When you put The Rules into action it becomes extremely apparent that there is a whole host of questions that you need to ask yourself before you get anywhere near putting pen to paper, or fingers to keyboard. Failure to ask yourself these questions will drastically reduce your chances of success, so let’s set ourselves up to succeed.


1: Assess your audience…

  • Who is going to be in your audience and what is their level of expertise?
  • Who has the power to sign-off or block your proposal?
  • Who is an expert advisor?
  • Who is a potential user of your idea?
  • Who is a supporter?
  • Who is an opposer?
  • Who is undecided?
  • Who has zero knowledge?

When you consider those questions it becomes inconceivable to think that you can ever walk blindly into a presentation and expect to win your audience over without considering their needs and requirements. Once you know the answer to those questions, to the best degree that is realistically possible, you can start to produce your message.

2: Avoid the “So what?” factor by being crystal clear…

  • What are you going to be talking about?… and the one that many people forget is…
  • Why are you talking about it? i.e…
  • What relevance does it have on your audience?
  • Why should it matter to them?
  • What’s in it for them?

Remember that it’s not about what you want to say to your audience, it’s what they need to hear from you.


Be 100% crystal clear about what it is that you want your audience to do.

Ask yourself these questions…

When the audience leaves after my presentation…

  • How do I want people to feel?
  • What do I want them to do?
  • How do I want them to act?
  • What do I want people to think?
  • What do I want them to specifically remember?

If you don’t consider these questions then you are in the dark and your audience will also be in the dark, so make sure you shed plenty of light. People cannot see the path if you don’t light the way.

In my next article I will help you with the next step of The Rules: Command Attention

Photo 2: Shutterstock, cristovao

Photo 3: Shutterstock, JoffreyM

Photo 4: Shutterstock, vovan

>> This article is part of the LinkedIn Influencers series; I welcome your questions, thoughts, observations, and experiences there:


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