OSRAM – The Five Components of an Effective Presentation – Part 1 of 5 – The Objective

How do you give an Effective Presentation? What makes the difference between an average presentation and an effective presentation? This is Part 1 of 5 in a series of articles.

There are five main components of an effective business presentation. The acronym OSRAM should help you to remember them and help you to light up your audience. The five components are:

  • The Objective
  • The Speaker
  • The Room
  • The Audience
  • The Message

You should consider each of these components in turn to maximize the effectiveness of your presentation. Neglecting any individual component can ruin an otherwise successful presentation. Put them together correctly and you will turn on a light in people’s heads; brighten up their lives; get your audience to see and understand things, about which they were previously in the dark.

This series of articles looks at each of these components in turn and discover what needs to be done to ensure the success of that component.

The Objective

What do you want the audience to do as a result of your presentation?

To create an effective presentation the first thing you need to decide is what the objective of the presentation is. Sounds simple, doesn’t it?

But there may be more to that simple statement than you first perceive. You could say that for a product presentation the objective is for the audience to learn about the product, but that would be a very poor objective, as there is no action associated with it and no way of measuring how successfully it has been accomplished. The question you should ask yourself is ‘Okay, after my presentation they will know more about our product, but what do I want them to do next?’.

If your answer is ‘I want them to buy it’ then maybe you have gone to the other extreme. This objective may be fine if you work on a market stall and sell a vegetable chopper that cuts, slices and dices everything from tomatoes to pineapples. In that case, it may be realistic that after you have presented how easy it is to use and what a lovely job it makes, some people will want to buy one. For a market stall presentation, “selling the product” is a very good and plausible objective, which is measured by the thickness of your wallet at the end of the day.

However, for most business-to-business sales, it is unlikely that the presentation will lead directly to the sale. The sale may happen months later by which time you will have forgotten how well the presentation went.

So what is your objective? And how can you measure your success? The best objectives are SMART objectives.

SMART stands for:

  • Specific
  • Measurable
  • Attainable
  • Relevant
  • Timely

In the above examples objectives “getting the audience to know more about my products” is not easily measurable or very specific, and buying the product is not very timely.

A reasonable objective, when the presentation is the first real contact that members of the audience have had with your company, may be for 40% to arrange follow up meetings with your sales force.

When you are presenting at a conference on a subject, in which your company specializes, you may measure the success by the number of people who come up to talk to you after you have finished. You can set yourself a target of say 10 people. If only two people want to talk to you afterward, then it may be because your presentation did not stir up enough interest. If over 20 people come to talk you, you will have exceeded your expectations.

As every presentation has an objective it is important that the presentation concludes with a call to action that informs, encourages and directs people to meet your objective. If you want them to arrange a meeting with your sales force, you need to tell them to arrange that meeting and make it as easy as possible for them to do it. Consider having the sales force join you after the presentation so they can talk to their prospective clients, there and then.

With an objective of having people to talk with you after a conference presentation, you need to tell the audience where you will be and that you would welcome the opportunity to discuss any aspect of the subject in more depth, on an individual basis, or answer any more specific questions that your presentation has raised in their minds.

As you can see, by objective, what I am really talking about is what action you want the delegates to take following the presentation.

Of course, yours is not the only objective you need to consider. What are the audience’s objectives likely to be? What do they want to get from your presentation? Understanding your audience and their objectives is the key to an effective presentation and is discussed in the section entitled ‘The Audience’.

Your OSRAM objective should be SMART and remember to use a call to action at the end of you presentation to reinforce your objective.

Effective Negotiations

In business, effective negotiation skills are of paramount importance. Whether closing the deal, haggling over the price of a supplies agreement, or handling a pay raise conversation with a valued employee, a business owner relies on these skills for a robust bottom line. While you may already be an effective negotiator, you may want to consider some strategies that can help you maximize the chances of achieving the results you desire in business negotiations.

A truly effective negotiator seeks to arrive at mutually beneficial conclusions. Those entering negotiations are each seeking value that wasn’t there previously. To ensure successful negotiations, it is imperative to offer that value to the other party. Don’t ignore your own self-interest, but enter the discussion having first closely considered what may be needed or sought by the other party. If you initially reflect on upon partner’s priorities, it is much more likely that negotiations will work well.

Prior to bargaining on an important deal, be prepared. For example, if you are preparing to offer your product at a certain price level, be prepared to demonstrate commensurate value by offering testimonials about the quality of the your product, and its worth relative to like products in the marketplace, as well as offering information about the price of similar products sold through your competitors. Consider role-play practicing your sales presentation with a colleague, being sure to seek input on how to can improve your skills and approach.

It is wise to learn as much as possible about your negotiation counterpart prior to reaching the bargaining table. This will help you tailor your offer to meet the unique needs of your customer. For many in sales, it is all too easy to allow a sales call to proceed by rote, underscoring to potential customers that the negotiator has not considered their specific needs. Through the sales discussion, it is important to demonstrate that there has been much thought put into marrying product and service features with the needs of the prospect.

As a customer, you will be able to contribute strongly to your company’s bottom line using effective negotiations. First, arm yourself with information about the product or service you are considering. Having done your research on competitor’s prices and offerings will allow you to ask more pointed questions to gave value for your dollar. Be cognizant of the target price you seek, and the amount to which you would consider drifting from that price in exchange for further value, such as free delivery, or a discount based upon volume purchases.

Pay close attention to what your negotiating counterpart is asking for, and consider what flexibility you can offer to achieve a win-win scenario. As with any purchase, don’t feel rushed or pressured. Reserve the right to seek more time to consider any new requests or demands for concessions before you actually come to a final agreement.

In some cases, what you are negotiating may be quite large and have additional layers of complexity. If this is the case, be on the lookout for any hidden agenda, remind yourself of your objective, and postpone further negotiations as soon as you encounter something do not understand. On the other side of the equation, don’t unduly pressure your prospects to make an on-the-spot decision if they don’t understand. Bygone high-pressure sales tactics are short sighted, sacrificing the long-term profitable relationship on the altar of the immediate sale. At risk is could be your reputation within the business community.

Of course, some negotiations end with neither party being willing to offer further flexibility. Don’t burn your bridges! Remain genteel and respectful. Let your counterpart know you appreciate the time invested so far. Use this as a stepping-stone to building a relationship that could yield fruit down the road.

Business Presentation Courses – Helping You Succeed As a Project Manager

You might wonder why you need to enroll for business presentation courses if you are well versed in the technicalities of your job as a project manager. As a project manager you should have the ability to motivate a group of people to complete a set of tasks, and making business presentations is a great part of this. Unfortunately most people are dumb struck at the prospect of addressing a group of people, and that to in a clear and concise manner. If this is your situation then you will find it very difficult to get people to understand what you expect of them. In addition, you will also find it hard to convince bosses and clients about the progress of the project as well as your expectations unless you can develop your presentation skills.

There are business presentation courses that will enhance your skills regarding how to effectively lead a project. You will learn how to structure your presentations in the correct manner so that they convey all the information that is necessary. There is a correct format to a presentation that includes all information in a structured manner. In addition, you should also learn how to make presentations in a really good manner. You should be able to grab the attention of your audience right at the beginning and retain it till the time you sit down. You will also know how to deal with all sorts of questions from the audience without worrying about making a bad impression about yourself.

You will also gain a lot of confidence in your public speaking abilities once you get the correct input from the best presentation courses. You will no longer be afraid of standing in front of a crowd no matter how senior the audience members are to you. This will help you immensely at your work because you will be able to make teams of very different people work together to achieve a common objective by having the right communication skills.

The other advantage of attending business presentation courses is that your increased confidence will help you grab a variety of business opportunities that come your way. Your personal life will also benefit from this since you will be able to communicate better with all the people in your life. Identify the best possible courses you could attend because they will help you get rid of your fear of making presentations.