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Owning the Room: Pitching to Professionals - North Point Partners


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Nothing can replace face-to-face communication as a means of developing rapport and cultivating trust with key stakeholders. Yet many people are uncertain at best or intimidated at worst when asked to speak to a group of influential people.

The workshop gives you practical tips to sharpen your message and calm your nerves. You can apply these to specific scenarios relevant to entrepreneurs and Startups, including pitch presentations.


Will Haskins, Editorial Director, North Point Partners

Will Haskins has been helping people say what they mean for more than a decade. A writer by trade and an educator by training, Will enjoys helping professionals develop a personal communication style. Businesses, small and large, turn to Will for sustainable, social strategies and effective content marketing plans.

Will has worked in media research, banking and financial publishing, after teaching writing, public speaking and classics in the US.

Published in: Business
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Owning the Room: Pitching to Professionals - North Point Partners

  1. 1. 11 February 2015 Owning the Room Will Haskins, Editorial Director, North Point Partners
  2. 2. Pitching to Small Groups of Stakeholders ✤ What can you expect from tonight? ✤ Interactive ✤ Rhetorical ✤ Practical
  3. 3. 01 How We Persuade “There are, then, these three means of effecting persuasion. The man who is to be in command of them must, it is clear, be able (1) to reason logically, (2) to understand human character and goodness in their various forms, and (3) to understand the emotions- that is, to name them and describe them, to know their causes and the way in which they are excited.” Aristotle – Rhetoric
  4. 4. The Challenge ✤ Extraordinary Upside ✤ Rarity ✤ Pressure ✤ Takeaway #1 You’re Not the Smartest Person in the Room
  5. 5. The Prep ✤ What do you have? ✤ Know your plan ✤ Rank its strengths ✤ Shelter its weaknesses ✤ Know your priorities
  6. 6. 01 Know your Audience “So it is said that if you know your enemies and know yourself, you can win a hundred battles without a single loss. If you only know yourself, but not your opponent, you may win or may lose. If you know neither yourself nor your enemy, you will always endanger yourself.” Sun Tzu - Art of War
  7. 7. The Prep ✤ Who are you meeting? ✤ What do they value? What do they need? ✤ What can they give? ✤ Don’t say money ✤ Focus on the vision ✤ Takeaway #2 Know what your audience needs
  8. 8. The Prep ✤ Psychology: ✤ Patient ✤ Inquisitive ✤ Daniel Kahnemann: Thinking Fast and Slow
  9. 9. The Room ✤ Reading it ✤ Body language ✤ Verbal cues ✤ Working it ✤ Greetings ✤ Giving them what they want
  10. 10. The Room ✤ Psychology ✤ Gravitas ✤ Dignitas ✤ Takeaway #3 Sincerity, not Charm
  11. 11. The Ask ✤ You only get one ✤ Cut ruthlessly ✤ Focus on value, not validation ✤ What can you offer them? ✤ Know how you meet their needs
  12. 12. The Ask ✤ Psychology ✤ Respect the moment ✤ Engage with confidence ✤ Takeaway #4 Invite Partnership
  13. 13. The Close ✤ What happens in a close ✤ Make a promise ✤ Set a date ✤ Maintain relationships with all parties ✤ Takeaway #5 Cultivate Advocates
  14. 14. The Close ✤ What can go wrong? ✤ Not prepared for success ✤ Not authorised to decide ✤ Psychology ✤ Flexibility ✤ Creativity
  15. 15. The Details ✤ Nerves ✤ Exist in all five sense ✤ Slow down, always
  16. 16. The Details ✤ Practice to limit your weaknesses ✤ Verbal acuity ✤ Effective gestures ✤ Punctuated stillness ✤ Focus and repeat
  17. 17. The Details ✤ Difficult questions ✤ Plan your talking points beforehand ✤ Admit the difficulty ✤ Address it truthfully ✤ Redirect to your strengths
  18. 18. The Takeaways ✤#1 You’re not the Smartest Person in the Room ✤#2 Know what your Audience Needs ✤#3 Sincerity, not Charm ✤#4 Invite Partnership ✤#5 Cultivate Advocates
  19. 19. Any questions?