How Your Business Presentation is Like an Electrical Circuit
As you know I was a Physics teacher for many years and spent many lessons teaching youngsters about electricity.
The picture may fill you with horror! but just bear with me a moment… cast your mind back to when you were learning about electricity at school and let me ask you a question. What would have happened if the teacher had given you a whole pile of components, (without a diagram) and just told you to get on with it? You may have enjoyed it more I suppose but you probably didn’t learn anything from it.
It’s more likely that you were given a circuit diagram like the one here ( that you may or may not have understood) and were asked to gather the components together, connect them up following the diagram and make it work. And invariably there would be frustration and disappointment sometimes when you couldn’t get it to work. ( If it doesn’t work it’s physics!)
And because you can’t “see” the electricity it’s sometimes difficult to work out what’s gone wrong but invariably it will come down to one of three things:
1) having the wrong components for what you are trying to do
2) the components are faulty
3) there’s a bad connection somewhere or no connection at all
…… all of which result in the electricity not being able to flow and the circuit not working as you want it to.
And it’s only when you understand about electricity and how it works that you are able to work out how to put it right and get the results you want with the circuit working properly.
And it’s exactly the same in business presentations. There’s very often frustration and disappointment when your presentation or pitch doesn’t work to get you the results you want and many can’t “see” what’s gone wrong because they don’t understand enough about how effective communication works and how to get the presentation to be one that wins you business.
In the same way that an electrical circuit can fail, business presentations fail because …..
A) the speaker does not have any plan for how to go about putting a presentation together (no circuit diagram)
B) they haven’t decide what they want the presentation to do ( no idea of what the circuit is for)
C) the content of the presentation isn’t appropriate for the audience ( the components are faulty)
D) the speaker doesn’t connect with the listeners and so the message doesn’t get through ( there’s a faulty connection and the electricity can’t flow so the circuit doesn’t work)
So in the same way that if you want to get an electrical circuit to work every time you have to gain a better understanding of electricity, if you want your business presentation to be successful every time you have to gain a better understanding of how communication works.
Here are several things you can begin to do :
1) decide what the purpose of the presentation is and be very specific
2) draw up a plan for how you are going to put it together
3) decide on the best components for the audience you will be speaking to
4) make sure that you have a way of connecting with the listeners immediately that works
5) try it out first
and then you’ll have a way of working that will enable your presentations to be more successful every time.
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