Read the two alternative openings for the same presentation and then study the points below Opening 1
Good morning, ladies and gentlemen, and thank you very much for inviting me here to speak to you. Let me introduce myself - my name is Carlos Pinto and I am the sales director of Downtown Properties. My objective today is to introduce our company and show you how we can help you find the right office for your business. I have divided my presentation into three parts. First I'll tell you a little about the history of our company, then I'll show you some slides of office space that we currently have available, and finally I'll deal with the question of cost. My presentation will take around twenty minutes, and if you have any questions I'll be pleased to answer them at the end. Okay. Let's start by looking at who we are and how the company has developed over the last twenty years (show sfirst slide, which is a timeline of the history of the company
I bet you're sick of looking for office space, right? Are you feeling like this? (shows slide with a cartoon of a stressed businessman in a small room) Who feels like that? (everyone laughs) Wouldn't you prefer to feel like this? (shows slide with a cartoon of a relaxed executive in a large, modern office) Now, you all know the importance of location for business success. Well, we can help you. We're called Downtown Properties, and we've been offering rented solutions in this city for more than twenty years. I'd like to find out something from each of you in turn: what is the single most important reason why you want to move from your current offices?
Opening 1 is more formal, structured and European style.There are many typical 'key phrases' for presentations. In fact, the whole extract is based on standard phrases for introducing the speaker, introducing the topic, describing the structure of the presentation, telling the audience when they can ask questions, moving to the first point, etc. The advantages of a presentation in this style are: it is safe for a non-native speaker; it relies less on personality; it guarantees that all important points will be covered; it makes the structure clear at the beginning; the audience knows when to ask questions. The disadvantages are: it might be boring; it might focus
on irrelevant information.
Opening 2 is more informal, spontaneous and American style.
There are no 'key phrases'.
The advantages of a presentation in this style are: it is lively; it involves the audience; the speaker can respond immediately to the needs / interests of the audience. The disadvantages are: it is risky for a non-native speaker; it relies on an extrovert personality; the speaker might lose direction or miss important points. Most people will use a presentation style that is somewhere between these two extremes, and it depends on many things such as the speaker's confidence and personality, the topic, and the expectations of the audience. The mind map opposite gives help with key phrases for those occasions when you choose to use them. Units 15,18 and 20-22 are also very relevant to the language of presentations. Presentation structure
A possible structure for a presentation is given below. Use it as a planning checklist - you don't have to follow every step, but at least consider all the points. The first letters make an easy-to-remember acronym: Bomber B.
Bang! - something that you say or do at the beginning that gets the attention of the audience: a visual aid, a story, a joke, a surprising fact, a reference to 'here and now' (the audience, the place, etc).
Opening - thanking the organizers for inviting you, a few words about yourself, telling the audience the topic and structure of your presentation, making it clear whether questions should be kept to the end or not.
Message - the main points of your presentation. Decide on just three key points at the planning stage and write them down as three short sentences. This will...
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