Presentations come in a lot of different forms and have a variety of purposes. In the business world, there are six main types of presentations. Get to know them and once you identify your purpose, choose the right type before you begin to prepare and practice your presentation. You can always modify your presentation to meet your specific purpose.
Everyone from those who present in front of large audiences on a stage to managers who need to pitch their ideas to co-workers can improve their delivery and impact of their message.
1) Providing Information. This format encompasses anything from a team meeting that gives updates on a project or upcoming event to a demonstration that shows product functions.
2) Teaching a Skill. Your company just installed a new system or implemented a new process that requires people to learn how to use the new tool and apply the process.
3) Reporting Progress. As you integrate the new system into your daily routine, your boss wants to know how it’s working. You might schedule a divisional meeting or group off-site to share the progress.
4) Selling a Product or Service. A briefing like this might include a recap of the product or service, next steps and action items, or a discussion of needs and improvements before the product is ready to sell.
5) Making a Decision. It’s time for the annual holiday party and ideas are being tossed around the office. When giving your input on the location, make sure to share the must-haves and nice-to-haves for the event. When it’s time for the final decision, you can see how your idea stacks up to the other options.
6) Solving a Problem. This could be in a panel setting or other meeting where the problem is identified, the facts of the problem are presented and a list of causes is generated. From here, you lay out the ideal outcome, present solutions and discuss your recommendation.
With any presentation, know your objectives. If your purpose is to inform or update, you will most likely use one of the first three types of presentations. On the other hand, if you’re on a mission to persuade someone, use one of the last three presentation types. Not every presentation has to mold itself into a traditional presentation; it can be an interview, status report, program, pitch, speech or demonstration, for example.