Steve Herbert
18 Mar

Hugh Grant's advice applies as much to business presentations as Hollywood blockbusters.

It will not have escaped your notice that the international film industry is currently at “peak” awards season. This annual spectacle usually leads to more than a few sycophant headlines in the national media, and often equally nauseating articles praising the films of last year above and beyond their actual appreciation by the film-going public. 

It was therefore rather refreshing that British actor Hugh Grant raised at least one red flag for the film industry in his recent speech.  Channelling his inner Oompa-Loompa, Grant is reported to have said; 

"Oompa-loompa, doompity-dee, now the best director categor-ee. Oompa Loompa doompity-dong, most of these films were frankly too long." 

And how right he is.  

Whilst there will always be some cinema-goers who are happy to sit through a truly epic-length film, most of us look at run times of 120 or even 180 – minutes plus with a real sense of dread. Indeed many would not even contemplate attending the cinema for any film lasting more than 2.5 hours. 

What about business presentations? 

So, why am I writing about this here? 

The truth is that the same dynamic equally applies to most business presentations.

A presentation that drags on for (say) 50 minutes – particularly if the content could be far more compellingly delivered in half that time – is a presentation that is unlikely to land well with some or all of the audience. And if the audience is disengaged, then all the presenter has achieved is alienation of his/her audience, and probably likewise reduced the chances of any post-event business opportunities also. 

It is also worth noting that a work-related presentation is unlikely to have the same audience appeal as a trip to the local movie house. The attendees are therefore less committed to the topic, and more likely to lose focus and concentration if the presentation takes too long.  

Everyone wins! 

The reality is that a good business presentation needs to deliver the essential information highlights quickly & efficiently to retain the full attention of the audience. 

I would therefore encourage any presenter to revisit the first “cut” of their presentation to see where repetition can be removed, which slides are unnecessary, and where information can be précised to deliver a far more compelling message.  

And the winner of this, rather more focused, approach is… 

Your audience, your delivery, your message, and ultimately your sales figures too.  

Please contact us to discuss presentation skills training and 1-2-1 coaching options.   A small investment for a BIG return!

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