The case studies outlined in the “Athena In Action” series are being shared as examples of the variety of solutions we have provided to our clients for over a decade.
TOPIC: Presentation Skills
ASSESSMENT/SITUATION: I was call in to talk to the Director of Human Resources about the engineer’s ability to effectively deliver their monthly reports. The President flew in from the US every month for a meeting where all the department heads provided presentations on their activities and results. The engineers were technically fantastic and knew their jobs but were very poor at presenting. They often had too much information on their slides and they would read from them. Some of them were visibly very nervous and some others were unfocused and would go off in a different direction. The President also felt the format of the meeting was ineffective and asked the Director of Human Resources to arrange for training for the engineers.
ATHENA PARTNER MATCHING: Since this audience was perfect for my “Make Your Point” presentation skills program, I submitted my program as a possible solution. Once the Director of Human Resources read through the details of my program, she agreed it was a great fit.
SOLUTION: I delivered my one day Presentation Skills program that provided the development of the engineers Presentation Skills ability. Specific areas addressed included:
- Handling nervousness
- Structure of a good presentation: Opening, Body and Closing
- Understanding the needs of your audience
- Presentation skills – Tips and Techniques
- Handling questions
- Body language/gestures
- Using voice and tone effectively – characteristics of a good speaking voice
- Eliminating distracting mannerisms
- Using stories effectively to communicate your message
- Facial expressions – eye contact
- Using PowerPoint & other visual aids effectively
This program provided significant opportunity for participants to practice their new skills that were introduced within the program. It also provided the participants with the opportunity to interact with each other in a fun and collaborative way.
RESULTS: We accomplished the objectives through a program delivery format that was highly interactive and provided tangible outcomes in the form of awareness, tools, and new skills that were immediately applied back on the job. Participants were able to practice their presentations twice during the program and receive valuable verbal and written feedback for improvement. Everyone left saying they felt more confident to deliver their presentations the following month. In addition to learning new presentation skills I addressed the issue of the inefficient meeting. We changed the format from having one person be the MC and get up and announce each presenter, we had each presenter invite the next speaker on the agenda come to the front. This shaved 15 minutes off the overall meeting time. The President was very pleased at the next meeting, not only because the presentations were more professional and also how efficient the meeting was run.
About the Author: Cindy Stradling CSP, CPC I have an unquenchable passion for life-long learning and continuous improvement. I am a Training Agent, Certified Coach and Facilitator. I work with organizations to simplify the process and reduce the risk of outsourcing training, coaching and HR Consulting. I provide a one source solution to finding the “Perfect Fit” training solution for sustainable results. I believe contributing to the strengthening of my client’s most powerful asset, their employees, is today’s most valuable investment.