Ideally, a corporate lunch should take place in a room, with air-conditioning on warmer days, and listeners 100% focused on you. However, great opportunities do not always present themselves as we would hope – but this is no reason to miss out on them.
Your chance to talk about a new project, a change of path or innovative plan might be during lunchtime, for instance. Having meals with your boss or potential clients are recurring situations you can use to introduce great ideas, hence the importance of being ready to show how good your idea is.
Sure, unexpected issues may come up, but if you address them tactfully and train your speech properly your chances of success are huge.
We have listed six tips to help you prepare for your next corporate lunch.
Before delivering any presentation, you must know by heart your audience’s interests and needs. In a corporate lunch is no different. Carry out a thorough research about the person you are meeting with and what type of innovation and solution the company, and its specific department, is looking for to guarantee you will offer something that makes sense and interests your listener.
A corporate lunch is still a meal. Your interlocutor will be sharing his/her attention between your speech, the food and other distractions – such as the noise in the restaurant and the waiter coming to the table regularly. So, it is of uttermost importance to get his/her attention right in the beginning, assuring your message is comprehended. Be straightforward, clear and brief in your intentions.
Classify your information
Divide the information between “most important” and “least important”. If there is not enough time to discuss everything you wanted to, at least you make sure the essential message is delivered.
Avoid alcoholic beverages
Although it is lunch, the context demands solemnity. In order to have a flowing conversation, good verbal and non-verbal communication, the speaker must be sober. Otherwise, he/she might lose concentration and get lost in the speech. So, even if the other person orders or offers you a drink, decline and say, “thank you”.
Eat whenever you want, speak whenever you can
This is a motherly advice: “Speaking with your mouth full is unpolite” – and it is no different here. Obviously, we are supposed to eat during lunch, nonetheless, our focus is divided between what we see, hear, feel and do.
If you want your listener to pay attention at what you are saying, save your speech to the breaks between dishes or the coffee just after the meal, when your audience’s attention is most likely to be focused on your speech.
Bringing up your ideas during the meal is not frowned upon, after all this is a casual gathering, but remember to respect the space of your listener and to find the most appropriate moment to talk.
Should I bring slides?
The answer to this question is “No!”. The visual support is a great ally to make your presentation memorable. However, it is not recommended during lunch. It seems inconvenient to open a laptop on the table and show dozens of slides or even hand in a brochure that must be managed.
If the meeting is taking place in a restaurant that offers a private room and an appropriate place for a presentation, then you may make use of such resource, but remember: always between courses.
If you follow our tips, your presentation will stand out more than the main dish.
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Three PR companies struggle for a partnership with a big agency. In situations like these, knowing how to show your differential may determine who will win. The agency will probably choose the corporation better aligned to its values and that shows ability to deliver what was promised. However, presenting why your company is better than others with credibility and without looking phoney is not an easy task.
We’ve handpicked some suggestions which will make your presentation rock and conquer your audience – without being artificial, cliche and phoney.
Talk about your case studies
Most presenters start their speech by telling their company’s mission, vision, values, differentials and blurting out a list of famous customers. By doing this the presenter will hardly grasp the audience’s attention – and it’s important to have in mind that the decision is on their hands. Listing qualities won’t prove anything and it can sound like a simple strategy to please the audience. After all, in an environment like this it´s easier to tell what you do well rather than list shortcomings.
In a well balanced speech, talking about your case studies sounds honest and truthful. Allows the audience to understand without explicitly telling the reason why your business exists. Your chances of being the chosen one will increase when the audience acknowledges that you have an experienced background and that your plans for the future are promising.
Let´s say that your company values s are “cooperation, efficiency and excellence”. You can tell a story illustrating how these principles work in your company in a daily basis. For example, that time when your employees had a whole project to do all over again in just a couple of days. The teamwork was intense and all opinions were heard to meet the deadline. As a result of all this effort, the delivered project was outstanding. When you present true situations, the audience can naturally draw their own conclusions regarding your qualities which is way more compelling than the ordinary “self praise” speech.
Don’t pad things out
Forget about explaining every detail of a slide explained in a minute. On the other hand using a shipload of slides does not show knowledge. As a matter of fact, it can hint right the opposite. Talking too much can bore out the audience specially when ideas don’t have aa good script. We strongly suggest that you practice elevator pitch, which means you have to summarize the important ideas into the least time possible. If you have ten minutes to talk, try to use only five. It will leave more time for your interaction with the audience whenever you feel like it.
Do not mention the competition
It´s very common in the United States to run into ads where brands expose their competitors to show how they distinguish themselves. . If you present cases that please the listener, he´ll see on his own in which fields your company stands out.
Empathize with your audience
When talking about your cases studies, bring up stories that are close to your prospect’s reality. If you know, for instance, that this specific company frowns upon delays, show cases where your company made it very clear how reliable they are regarding deadlines and due dates. What your company did in the past tends to increase your credibility now the public is more likely to trust in what you’re presenting now. This will make it is easier to establish bonds and to build up empathy.
Doing an in-depth research on the profile of the people who are responsible for decision-making and on the company’s needs will help you find the appropriate cases to present.
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