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Make Your Content Short and Sweet

In this three-part blog, I’m going to answer a recent mentees question on how you prepare for an executive presentation.

Part 2 – Preparing Content

If you have been like me, I get wrapped up in putting slides and content together and getting stuck! As I have learned over time, start by hitting the ball down the fairway, instead of playing in the trees.

Start by answering this question:

1. What challenges are you solving for? – Slide 1

  • This will guide the rest of your presentation (or golf round)

2. What are your big bets or solution to the challenges? – Slide 2

  • 3-5 ideas
  • Show them visually 
  • Have anecdotes or stories to back them up
  • No more than 25 words on a slide (much less is better)

3. Money Slide – Slide 3

  • If it’s a business plan – show an annual view of the program (s)
  • If it’s a sales proposal – show the ROI of each solution
  • You are likely to spend time on one slide when executives start asking questions, this is it.  Can this slide stand alone if its the only one you looked at?

4. Asks, Risks and Next Steps – Slide 4

  • What asks do you have of the customer or your internal team to deliver your plan?
  • What are the risks you want to identify and how can you prepare to handle those? Executives always want to know the risks.

5. Actions and Next Steps – Slide 5

  • What are the immediate next steps?
  • What actions does your executive need to consider?
 

All other slides go into the appendix.  You can put all supporting slides here. 

Take it from mistakes I have made in the past, by over contenting…I have never got past 5 slides with an executive.  You can have the 10 slides of detail in your plan, and they sit behind the “Appendix” divider and can be brought up if you need them.

To Defeating Average in Presentations.

Colin

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