How To Reduce Time for Presentations Using a Presentation Template

Most managers take anything from 4 hours to 4 days to create a short presentation. They invest a lot of time and effort in making the presentation. This happens even if the presentation itself is delivered for 20 minutes. So any time that you save in creating presentations adds to time on hand you can use for other tasks and increase your effectiveness.

Especially, if you make sales or marketing presentations frequently, but needs to present different content each time, this is of great benefit.

Reuse Presentation Structure:

Most presenters have the habit of cut-pasting content from previous presentations. You can go beyond this simple cut-paste to save time. Any presentation you make often has a typical structure. Have a presentation template that just has this structure in place. Whenever you need to make a new presentation, use this presentation template to fill in information and your presentation is ready much faster than before.

The process in detail:

The steps in creating a structure is as follows:

1. Select a topic where you make presentations fairly frequently. This could be performance reports, client proposals etc.

2. Take around 3 or 4 presentations you already made under this topic. If possible, do get inputs from colleagues who had made successful presentations for this same topic.

3. Take a blank presentation template. This could be in the prescribed company format to reduce time even further

4. Go slide by slide, and note down the broad level topics covered in the old presentation. For example, your sales slides could read as:

  • a. Slide 1 – Title
  • b. Slide – 2 Agenda
  • c. Slide 3 – Overview of client requirements
  • d. Slide 4 – Introduction to Company etc.

Add in the topics from at least 3 or 4 old presentations to ensure all possible topics are covered.

5. Save the final file as a template and you are ready with a Presentation Template.

Such a presentation template with structure ensures that you do not miss out any important points in future presentations. Creating such a template should not take more than an hour and will save you many hours in the future.

Having such a structured template format has many additional advantages:

1. It reduces your time to think as main points are already listed

2. You can get someone else to fill in some information and they can understand what you need from the format.

3. You can share this format with your team and they can present content in the same flow as yours.

If you do not have the time or skill to make the template, you can search online for sites that provide such readymade templates for you to fill in. Now you can save time easily!

Home Buyer Negotiating Mistakes – Part 2

Exhibiting Urgency. Few things sap negotiating power like exhibiting urgency. Agents smell urgency and will encourage the seller to drag their feet until you can’t stand it anymore and make a full-price offer. Remember, a real estate agent representing a seller is legally obligated to get the most money possible for the seller. If you have to be out of your house in 45 days because the buyer is closing and taking occupancy, keep it to yourself. If the seller or agent senses this, kiss your chances of negotiating anything goodbye. Remember, always play the reluctant buyer. You are looking at several attractive options and you are perfectly comfortable staying in your current house for the next year. Many times, if you are a serious buyer, the real estate agent or the seller will try to drag an offer, even a lower offer, out of you. Then you know you are shifting the momentum in your favor.

Trusting a Real Estate Agent to Negotiate for You. Don’t. Do. IT! As I said, real estate agents have little required training in negotiation to get a license. Furthermore, most real estate agents, even buyer’s agents, are still paid based on a percentage of the sales price of the house. And they are paid by the seller. Just think about the conflict of interest this creates. Consider that the seller is representing his or her best interests. The seller’s real estate agent is representing the seller’s best interests. The buyer’s agent (your agent) is getting paid based on what the house sells for so they are representing their own best interests. Who is looking out for you? You are. Ensure you know how to protect yourself. Because if your agent negotiates a better deal for you, that is money out of their pocket. This doesn’t mean that no agent will negotiate for you. There are some excellent buyer’s agents out there that will aggressively protect the buyer’s money. I highly recommend using a real estate buyer’s agent for a variety of reasons. Just make sure you have one of the good, experienced ones and not one that is protecting their money.

Offering Too Much Initially for a House. In negotiation, always offer lower than you expect to get. Offering too high doesn’t leave you sufficient room to arrive at your goals. People have an overwhelming tendency to end up in the middle of the range between asking price and offer price. That means you have some control in determining where the middle is. A friend of mine was recently negotiating a new home. The asking price was $349,000. My friend offered $275,000. The actual sales price: $310,000. What chance do you think my friend would have had in obtaining a sales price of $310,000 had he started out at $305,000? Zero. Remember, sellers price their homes high expecting to be negotiated down. Your first offer, and the manner in which you increase your offer, have significant influence on what you eventually pay for your home.

When you decide to buy your home, make sure you adequately prepare and avoid these costly mistakes. Understand that you must be the person looking after your best interests and that you may very likely be the only one. Gathering sufficient information and learning a few brown-bag negotiating skills can save you tens of thousands of dollars when you buy your home.

What Nobody Ever Tells You About Presenting

Most likely, you’ve heard this advice: people buy from people they trust. The interesting thing is: what do they buy?

The decision to purchase works for tangible and intangible items–across the board. It’s not just for products and services. People buy other things based on trust. Specifically, they buy into advice, ideas, recommendations, and suggestions from those who they know and believe.

What makes you believable to people who don’t know you already? A well-structured story.

Your story is the backbone of your presentation. But here’s the part most experts won’t reveal. How to build a story that is real, solid, and true. How to structure your story to engage any audience-even if you’re short on time and only have minutes to share your ideas.

The ‘how’ of storytelling is absolutely crucial in business presenting. If you tell a story that is authentic, you are very believable. People in your audience pay attention, get curious and want to hear more. Even if you’re just meeting for the first time, people feel that you are trustworthy…and they are interested in doing business with you.

If you tell a story that doesn’t make sense, doesn’t feel authentic, people will have the opposite response. They might not know exactly why. But something just doesn’t fit.

This leads people to feel things like:

“Something is off.”

“What he said just didn’t ring true.”

“I felt like there was a piece missing.”

What’s the result of this? People feel skeptical. They get picky about little things. They may be consciously or unconsciously suspicious. They question everything. Not only your story…but also your words, your background, your expertise, and your recommendations.

In other words, things take a long time and may not move forward. This is not what you want to achieve in interviewing for a job, initiating a consulting job, or sealing a sale.

A strong story is like the spine of any presentation. You may be presenting your bio, your background or your consulting project. Perhaps you’re presenting the story of your company, research or training program.

Many executive coaching clients have asked me, “what are the key building blocks for a great story?”

Here’s the short answer. Whatever the topic, organize so your story makes sense for your audience. Appeal to their sensibilities with these 8 building blocks.

1. Grabs Attention from start to finish. Instant connection is the secret to outrageous success.

2. Builds Credibility with tangible evidence. From news coverage to press releases to testimonials, share what other people have said about your business.

3. Deepens Interest by providing clear benefits for the audience.

4. Demonstrates Creativity for solving troubling problems and achieving compelling goals.

5. Ignites Desire with a magnetic pull of emotions. Reach deep to find core emotional connection with your audience because people want to do business with people who truly understand them.

6. Confirms Authentic sense that you, your company and your solutions are ‘the real deal.’ People want to get involved with people who are committed and genuine.

7. Shows Care for your audience. This is vitally important. People want to feel, hear and see that you care deeply about what matters most to them.

8. Inspires Action and decisions. Whether your purpose is to educate, inform, present or sell–action is the ultimate outcome.

Structure your business materials and presentations around these 8 elements, and your story will have power. Plus, there’s an added personal benefit. You’ll feel confident, at ease and ready for last-minute presentations.

Imagine the power. A well-built story will boost your business…and your bottom line.

With a logical and creative structure to your story, every presentation is much more powerful. This adds a rush of fresh energy for interactive presentations. The best part? You and your team will feel a boost in confidence…and see a boost in your bottom line results.