It’s ‘round midnight. You have to present to the CEO. Have you been putting this off? No clue what to say. No idea where to begin. Don’t worry…use this 8-step plan to get past confusion and get ready.

It’s tough to figure it out when you’re staring at the blinking cursor. Getting confusing advice. Too busy to start over from scratch. Too tired to feel creative. No clue how to win attention.

And the stakes are high!

I’ve seen this in myself and in thousands of professionals.

No wonder so many people say…

“I hate presenting!”

What can you do to get to a whole new level, fast?

Use this instant makeover plan to deal with the reality: you will be standing in front of C-level executives tomorrow.

Step 1. Focus On Solutions

Use your whole brain to solve problems and focus on solutions.

“Successful solutions are based on the powerful principle that resolution occurs by fostering the positive, not by attacking the negative… One basic principle has the power to resolve problems: Support the solution instead of attacking the suppose causes…. The way to finesse a high-energy solution is to seek the answer that will make all sides happy and still be practical. Such solutions involve utilization of both the tolerant right brain as well as the judgmental left brain.”
- David Hawkins, from “Power Vs. Force”

While this may seem like a big bite to take, go ahead. Your brain can handle the challenge. Support the solution.

Step 2. Plan Your Story
Use your imaginative power to build a story that explains your solution step by step. If you have a moment, use a storyboard. It’s a visual representation of each part of a story—so you don’t have to reinvent the wheel in order to build your persuasive story.

Step 3. Choose Pictures
Think about the pictures, photos, charts and maps that will speak directly to your audience. Take time to carefully think through what visual material is best for the environment, the participants, and the story you are communicating.

In other words, don’t just grab what’s handy. Think this through. Your visual depictions can make or break your success.

Step 4. Connect The Dots
Like a master weaver, show the tread connecting the solution, the story, the visuals and the desired outcomes. Focus on connection, purpose and performance.

While you are connecting the dots, be sure to think about another dimension: interaction.

Step 5. Invite Discussion
Plan for interaction and discussion. This is a way to satisfy the desire of participants to speak, share insights and contribute to a positive solution. Some of the responses may be supportive. Others may be challenging, questioning feasibility, practicality, costs and resources.

Step 6. Welcome Objections
It’s often said that ‘selling’ does not start until objections are surfaced. It is infinitely better to have C-level decision makers tell you their objections, than to have them not reveal objections. If you know what the objections are, you have the opportunity to respond.

One of the best ways to ignite this is to give examples of objections that others have cited. This seems counter intuitive, right? In fact, it is a sign of confidence and strength. You have to be supremely confident in your ability to welcome and address objections if you’re going to bring them up.

Step 7. Reinforce Solutions
Reinforce your key points. This does not have to be dull, boring or obviously repetitive. Give examples. Tell stories. Ask for input. Use reflections. Weave a solid fabric that offers attractive solutions that your clients want.

Step 8. Practice Like Crazy
Yes, your big day is tomorrow. But that doesn’t mean you don’t have time to practice. Try out every single aspect of your presentation. Work out the kinks. Smooth out your responses. Get feedback from peers.

Practice is considered the ‘mother of skill.’ Which means, the more you practice, the more skillful you’ll be for your big presentation.

There you have it. A cheat sheet for your remarkable presentation.

Go out and make it count!

Author's Bio: 

Milly Sonneman is a recognized expert in visual language. She is the co-director of Presentation Storyboarding, a leading presentation training firm, and author of the popular guides: Beyond Words and Rainmaker Stories available on Amazon. Milly helps business professionals give winning presentations, through Email Marketing skills trainings at Presentation Storyboarding. You can find out more about our courses or contact Milly through our website at: http://www.presentationstoryboarding.com/