Training: Winning Presentations

Research the Media is able to offer bespoke training services for research staff, agency or client-side, on building winning presentations. This takes the form of a two day course for up to five senior staff.

Screen from a conference introduction video

Numerous training companies focus effectively on how to deliver a presentation (dealing with nerves, making eye contact, body language etc). However, as a business leader looking to train key research and sales staff, I was very frustrated that when it came to constructing the actual presentations themselves, little help was at hand to train staff, so most of it was done on the fly.

It’s great if someone is a skilled presenter, but that still leaves three important boxes to be ticked before we have a winning presentation:

  • An engaging, unique and above all clear theme to the presentation.
  • An effective visual accompaniment to the presentation.
  • Above all, a well thought-through integration between the speaker and their materials.

It is highly irritating to read blanket statements like ‘death by PowerPoint’. Blaming PowerPoint generically is like saying you don’t like books or music – there is good use of  PowerPoint and bad use of PowerPoint. Some of the best presentations I have seen involved brilliant use of charts or images, equally some of the worst have come from presenters attempting to perform accapella!

I place a particular emphasis on how the presentation materials are used and on how to deliver an integrated and immersive experience. PowerPoint (or indeed Keynote or Prezi) is really a blank canvas that should be used to underscore the speaker, provide visual accompaniment and give a clear structure and direction to the presentation. Ineffective PowerPoint is bullet points, dense text or,  even worse, ‘subtitles’ echoing exactly what the speaker is saying. In my view, the optimum use is as a visual accompaniment, as opposed to a textual one, with the charts supporting the speaker, as opposed to the presenter ‘speaking’ to the charts.

I have a very strong track record in data visualisation, but this course isn’t about making charts looks pretty from the aesthetic design point of view. Each company has its own rules on style. The course is about fostering creativity, narrative threads and thematic angles to bring presentations to life. It’s about developing a winning and engaging theme, whether for a vital pitch or for a critical conference paper.

I  have a strong reputation as a presenter,  but this is under-pinned by planning and the use of visual aids and multi-media – the package as a whole. This means the approach is more able to be passed on to others.

Research the Media offers a unique approach to training presenters on the best techniques for building winning presentations and pitches.  The course tracks the whole creative process from conception, through development of a theme to building a final integrated presentation, drawing on over 20 years experience in presenting.

Course Format

A two day course either on or (preferably) off site for 4-5 senior staff.

Ideally course attendees should share a common research area or be from the same business unit (e.g. media, consumer).

Day one: Background, advice and debate around winning presentations and pitches, plus preparation for day two.

Day two: The team collaborate to prepare, deliver and appraise a real world example of a pitch or presentation.

For a more detailed course description and prices contact Research the Media here

Here are five phrases that this course will seek to banish forever. How many have you heard recently?

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