If you feel you have written a strong business document, how should you present and deliver it?
The best way to present and deliver a strong business document is with the use of a story - an emotional one which connects with the audience and/or the decision makers. That will make the case more persuasive and memorable for anyone viewing it as they’ll be able to relate it to something. The story should be able to highlight the need, impact and the solution of the issue or proposal being presented. Business documents are often presented for introducing something new or to change something that’s currently existing and this often means resistance and fear from the people (O’Hara, 2014). So, the way around to resolve it will be to include testimonials, share how the process benefited the target audience and tell all of it through the story. That helps to appeal to the heart as well and not the just the mind.
Telling a story isn’t the only thing you should focus on. It also needs you to focus on presenting and delivering a business document, as you should be able to find the right way to deliver the message you want to. This reminds me of a recent case in my workplace at Often Serious. Our unit Internal Communication Management was supposed to present our mid-yearly report. As the unit oversees the entire institutional communication process and leads the organization as an example, we had a huge task at hand. With only two days to prepare our case and everyone giving their best in the limited time for the report, the mode of delivery was a confusion as what we wanted to deliver was already covered by all the other sub-units in detail. So, our unit had made a last minute change in approach, shifting the focus towards our activities with the use of fantastic video presentation along with direct questioning and encouraging other sub-unit heads to speak up at the same time so that the audience feel valued and could connect. That ensured that we didn’t just repeat the content that other already covered and were also able to provide insight on our activities and future plan touching to every single individual such that they could relate.
Further on, you might not be aware of the time you’ll be provided to present the case. This calls for a preparation for anything that might happen with being ready with a short elevator pitch such that you can make use of it in case you’re provided a shorter amount of time. While some might ask you to dive into the presentation and to provide full detail at the start, finish or anywhere in between the presentation, you should be ready for that as well (Poynder, 1993). To do this, you might even add appendix slides so that you can expand further on certain elements posted in the case. It is thus important to plan for a short while also being prepared for going long if need be. And, that is how one can effectively present and deliver upon a strong business document.
O’Hara, C. (2014). The Right Way to Present Your Business Case. Retrieved from https://hbr.org/2014/07/the-right-way-to-present-your-business-case
Poynder, R. (1993). Document delivery in business information. Business Information Review, 9 (4), 23-34.
It does not matter if you are from the Americas, Europe, Asia and Africa, the world is waiting for you good ideas (Matt, 2013). It does not matter how well your business idea is, if you can’t clarify, pitch and present to others or possible investor, your ideas never works. Business presentation and pitching is more important than the business plan. Pitching is the process of motivating and securing funding for our project. The business pitch is different than business plan. But you need to have your plan drafted before you can fine - tune your pitch. After making a complete plan Altunas (2009) suggests preparing for different presentations for your possible business investor.
Business plan of no more than 50 pages.
Business plan condensed into PowerPoint presentation of not more than 20 slides.
The power point should be condense down to a 2 - page brief.
A Business Pitch only for 5 min
Whether you’re pitching to a possible investor, here are some valuable tips for presenting our business ideas effectively:
1. Preparing yourself, not just your idea
Every investor and entrepreneur will want to see that you have a clear business plan and they also want to see that you are fast, thoughtful and efficient, and can sustain the idea through its conception and growth (Blume, 2013).
2. Finding the possible Investor (Know who you’re presenting to )
At first you should find out the possible investor, who is ready to invest in your business plan. So, you have to know about his/her name, address, and phone numbers, so that you can easily communicate with him/her. You make them clear about your business idea. Before going with him/her, you have to know him/her and you have to have a clear plan for your business.
3. Research your Target
After selecting this idea, you should have do research on the basis of ideas. Learn as much as possible about how much money/capital is required to start the venture, and which the suitable place for doing this business is. Can we manage the human capital in our business? Before going pitching for our possible investor we should have complete answer of following questions. We can do our research from newspaper, website, article, and collecting the data from surveying.
Research your Competitor
Sure to research your potential competitors with competition analysis, you can predict what will be your competitor’s reaction when you decide to enter the market (Mohammadi & Nazarpoori, 2014). You will also predict how your customers will perceive your product.
4. Make your Pitch
You focus more about the presentation or pitch than business ideas. It would be better if you could have present this less than 5 min, explain the idea clearly about the return investment and the growth strategy. Or you can Email or mail for your targeting investor. Most people are very busy and they are not wasting their more time to read your email so you make your writing very short and simple so they can read and understand your idea within a limited time frame.
5. Address your weakness
Every idea has some weakness and you never hide this. All successful entrepreneur always address those issue openly. If we have any weakness in our business plan, we should address these openly and show that you have a contingency plan in place. Similarly, you always be prepared to answer the possible question: why? Whether it’s about premises you’ve chosen, your business name or logo, or even the product itself (Zetlin, 2014).
Your pitch is the main thing that could either get your business off the ground or sink it. The purpose of a successful pitch is to have investors willing to invest in your company. So, when you successfully deliver what an investor wants, you will have a truly compelling pitch.
Altunas. (2009). How to make a good business plan . Inc.
Blume, J. (2013). How to present your business plan. Inc.
Matt, S. (2013). Focus On Solving The Next Big Problem. Forbes Magazine .
Mohammadi, M., & Nazarpoori, A. (2014). Competitor Orientation of Small Organisations. Journal of Asian Scientific Research, 2014, 4(12): 741-756 .
Zetlin, M. (2014). Recognize and accept your weaknesses. Inc.
Presenting a business document is very important and equally nerve racking. Your success and failure to get your business documents appreciated and approved depends heavily on the way you deliver your pitch. Arthur and Dayle (2006) explains, "Like luncheon and dinner addresses, business presentations should grab attention right from the start. (Bell & Smith, 2014, p. 121)” An ice breaker can be used to ease the environment at the beginning and grab the attention of the crowd before you start your presentation but it should be appropriate. Some steps to follow when presenting and delivering your business documents have been mentioned below
1. Prepare and research: Without understating your audience it will difficult to prepare for the presentation. Thus the first step would be to research your audience, their expectation, background will help you in the preparation and delivery.
2. Practice makes perfect: Practice your pitch as much as possible. The more comfortable you are about you content and pitch the more effective will be your presentation.
3. Tell a great story: Do not read your document but instead inspire and hook the listeners to follow your every word. List of facts are important but your audience will follow the story more than just the facts.
4. Promote your business: It is important to promote your business as this is the main purpose of your business pitch. One important thing to do while promoting your business will be to connect with the audience. Refer to the experience of the audience and connect it with the need for your business.
5. Make your presentation visual: People react more to visual guidance in the presentation. Use graphs, lines, charts, maps, pictures that are relevant, media and even share hand-outs and questioners. Be innovative and move away from boring slides and bullet points.
6. Body Language and listen: Half of your communication will be through body language. Smiling, moving around the floor, eye contact, relaxed body movement and gestures help build trust on you being a better presenter. Also listen to your audience. Their reaction to your presentation will give your insights on delivering your presentation
7. Application: Your presentation should be applicable to the audience. It should be based on their needs. Catering the applicability of your business pitch to the audience will help center your presentation on the audience making them feel more involved.
8. Timing: Do not exceed the 20 minute margin. If you have a long presentation explain to the audience that you will be presenting for 45 minutes with a break in the middle after the first 20 minutes. Adults have an attention span of 20 minutes and only explain about one point in one session. An addition of related points can be added but you will lose the focus of the audience if you add more than one topic.
9. Conclusion: Conclude your pitch with visual resolution, promise, challenge or appeal to emotion. This gives a take away for the audience and will stick to their mind.
No matter what steps you choose it is important that you are comfortable with yourself on stage and do not be afraid of making mistakes. People tend to respond more with presenters making mistakes as this related more to being human. Be innovative and take risks. Your presentation is not about you but about the audience so telling a story for better deliver would be better than formal strict bullet points and facts. As explained by Steve Horton, "While some presentations are more formal, pitches tend to have more flexibility and presenting your pitch as a story can be much more compelling than a list of facts. (Giving that pitch your best shot, 2018)”
Bell, A. L., & Smith, D. M. (2014). Communication. In A. L. Bell, & D. M. Smith, Management communication (pp. 260-270). Delhi: John Wiley & Sons. Inc.
Giving that pitch your best shot. (2018, Feb 14). Southern HIghland News . Retrieved from https://proxy.lirn.net/MuseProxyID=mp03/MuseSessionID=co10e1nnk/MuseProtocol=https/MuseHost=search.proquest.com/MusePath/central/docview/2008712396/221F8CC82A474DBDPQ/1?accountid=158986
Business documents refers to several types of documents and reports that has different sections and content. The business documents can be related to commerce, government, administration or non-personal communication.
Writing excellent business documents is imperative for any working professional, especially a businessman or businesswoman. (White Smoke , 2016). To write a business document effectively, one must identify their target audience and make sure that their documents clearly express the objective to the reader. After writing a strong business document, you can present and deliver it in the following ways:
Be clear about your goals before starting to present your documents. Tell the audience about the objective of your report or email. The audience respond depends how you deliver your reports. For that, you must deliver it in the way you want your audience to understand. Therefore, make the presentation as clear and concise as possible.
Understand your audience
To deliver you should know your audience thoroughly. First, understand to what type of audience you are delivering your documents or will they understand what you are trying to present. Find out what your audience is expecting from your presentation. After finding out their expectations, you have to address your presentation in the same way.
Make a roadmap
You can begin to deliver it by emphasizing the logic behind the presentation. Make a road map of the things you are going to present. This will help you stay focused on the key ideas and messages, conclusions of your report. Just only, take the important part of your report that best support your presentation.
Structure your talk
When you write a long report and later have to orally present or deliver it, you can divide the report into specific parts; this gives a certain structure to your talk. This way you can structure your presentation step-by-step before jumping into another idea. Structuring your talk will help the audience to pay attention to the detail and remember your each idea.
Create a strong opener
Always try to begin your presentation with a strong opener. It is obvious that the audience think when a report is being delivered it is going to be long and boring. You can bring something interesting from your documents, its conclusions, explanations or facts that drag the attention of the audience. After giving a strong opening, you can move to the body of your presentation.
Keep the visuals lean and mean
Do not keep many detailed data in your presentation. Try to include only the essential data in your visuals. You should only use visuals that support your message you are trying to portray to the audience. Avoid using crowded visuals, lots of writing, charts and graphs.
Share your stories
Human beings responds and connects quickly to stories. Use your personal stories to engage your audience and make your point remember afterwards. It is a good idea to start with a story, but there is a wider point too: you need your presentation to act like a story (SkillsYouNeed, 2011). However, your story must be relatable to the content.
Use correct body language and enjoy your presentation yourself
Most of us are always in a hurry to finish our presentation and avoid facing the audience attention. Your body language shows your confidence and knowledge about the topic you are delivering. According to Haya Bint (2013), “Body language alone comprises of 55% of total communication whereas spoken words comprise of 7% and tone of voice comprise 38%.” Try to deliver your message acting like you own the stage. Be comfortable by practicing more and more.
Hence, in this way you can present or deliver your business documents by allocating the time of your presentation and end your presentation by clearly summarizing the conclusions and recommendations of your reports.
Haya Bint, A. B. (2013). The Body Language.
SkillsYouNeed. (2011). Top Tips for Effective Presentations . Retrieved from How can you make a good presentation even more effective?: https://www.skillsyouneed.com/present/presentation-tips.html
White Smoke . (2016). 5 Steps to Perfect Business Documents . Retrieved from 5 Steps to Perfect Business Documents: http://www.whitesmoke.com/5-steps-to-perfect-business-documents
We put a lot of effort in writing a strong business document. It demands good research and plenty of time. No matter how effective the document is, if we fail to present it effectively all our hard-work and effort goes in vain.If we fail to deliver effectively, even the best-laid business plans cannot get the desired response. The ideas may be great but if not communicated well, it will be useless and ineffective. The numbers and facts in the paper should be communicated as something tangible and relatable to make others understand and connect to our ideas. So presenting the document is as important as writing it.
There are several ways to present and deliver the business documents effectively. O’hara (2014) has mentioned the following ways for persuasive delivery:
1. Craft an emotional story: The best way to hook an audience is through story telling. Converting the information in paper to a meaningful story can help in getting positive response. The more we can inject an emotional appeal or human connection into our narrative, the stronger and more memorable our presentation will be. But it should not be vague and irrelevant.
2. Lead with the need: In order to grab the attention of our audience from the outset, we have to identify and communicate the business need we are trying to address by our presentation. In addition, we need to make them believe that the identified need aligns with corporate strategies and goals, and we can satisfy those needs in the best possible manner.
3. Address your audience concerns: We need to identify what the audience wants and present the business document accordingly. The interests of the decision makers should be incorporated in the presentation. The best way to make people involved is giving them the presentation before hand asking for recommendations and making their feedback a part of final presentation.
4. Find the right medium for your message: Text heavy slides with too much details and unattractive figures make audience lose their focus. We need to be sure about the message we want to convey and decide the best way to communicate it. The message decides the medium of communication. It could be figures, charts, diagrams or just plain text.
5. Do not forget to connect: Our document and slides could be very effective, but if we just focus on the information we want to deliver ignoring the human connection, we cannot get the desired result. Connecting with the audience is the most important thing in presentation as the real power of presentation lies on the ability to connect the audience through narratives.
6. Have an elevator pitch ready: The best mantra to present within the estimated time is planning for the short and preparing for the long. Sometimes the time allocated for the presentation might change on the last hour so we need to structure our presentation accordingly so that we do not panic and no information is left behind.
To conclude, telling story, spelling out the business need and having both short and long version of the presentation ready can help us in presenting our strong document effectively.
O’hara, C. (2014, July 21). The Right Way to Present Your Business Case. Harvard Business Review . Retrieved from https://hbr.org/2014/07/the-right-way-to-present-your-business-case
A business document is the form which contains the information about the company’s portfolio i.e. its products or services, contractual terms and conditions, the legal form of business and its all identity (Business documents, 2018). Once, we are done with our business document, there comes a part of delivery to the concerned person. The delivery of the subject matter is one of the prominent persuading factors. If the business document is well written but while presenting it is unclear to the client then that has no meaning, so both writing and presenting and delivering business document is more important for the business document.
The delivery of the dialogues, the body language, the connection with the audience and the overall actor performance could only take the document to the level. Let me shortlist some important part to delivery which determines how a strong business document should be represented.
- Knowing the Audience
To grab the attention of the audience, need assessment is very necessary. If we can understand and identify the business need of the audience then only we can easily address their query and can grab their attention. In the same way, we should also put emphasis on the hidden persuaders such as data, stories, and details according to the audience choice. So while delivering our business document, we should strongly connect with the audience by understanding their expectations, perspective, and attitudes.
- Body Language
Let us assume, we are done with business documents that contain thorough information regarding our ideas. Once, we deliver in front to the audience and we failed to express losing our confidence then that spoil the document. It is said that the tone of our voice, count for 38%, but, visual cues facial expressions, gestures, pupil dilation etc., make up a massive 55% of our credibility rating to the audience (Freeman, 2009). I have encountered with numbers of presenter, who are focused on their slides, standing in front only, with poor eye connection and small voice which audience could not identify his word. This is why; when we are presenting, strong, positive body language becomes an essential tool in helping us build credibility, express our emotions, and connect with the audience.
Preparation is the key to confidence, timely presentations and effectiveness. The presenter should know about the business documents before delivering it to the audience. When we are better prepared, it will boost our confidence and make it easier to concentrate on delivering our message. So, while delivering, if we have preparation then it would allow us the benefit of having time calculation, support through the relevancy points, and answer the audience questions.
- Address audience’s concerns
While delivering or presenting the documents to the audience, the presenter must be able to make a comfortable environment and connect with the audience. If we can make them feel like they co-created the presented content then they’ll not only support us but then they’ll feel more connected and work for that proposal.
To sum up, one should start with a good opening, explaining the main points or contents and adding supporting information to support our arguments by establishing linking statements to make the audience relate it with their needs and requirements and closing with a good note.
Business documents. (2018). In verksamt.se . Retrieved from https://www.verksamt.se/web/international/running/business-documents
Freeman, H. (2009) In theguardian. Retrieved from https://www.theguardian.com/careers/interviews-body-language