Unit 5: Developing and Delivering Effective Presentations
This unit will teach you how to create effective, ethical, and persuasive speeches. You will examine potential obstacles that can impede communication, and explore the ways you can use your presentation skills in business situations.
Completing this unit should take you approximately 9 hours.
Upon successful completion of this unit, you will be able to:
- identify the various organizing principles of a speech and how to apply them in speech development;
- identify strategies for maintaining objectivity in a speech;
- explain how to develop an audience-centric speech that results in active listening;
- describe the steps for creating an effective and ethical informative speech;
- describe the individual characteristics of motivation and persuasion and how they can be applied in effective speech development;
- explain how language and cultural obstacles can impede cross-cultural communication;
- use argumentative strategies and emotional appeals in a presentation that is honest and maintains ethical standards;
- create pitches of varying lengths using the elements of elevator speeches and sound bites; and
- explain how agendas and other strategies may be used to ensure that business meetings are productive.
5.1: Planning for the Presentation
Speech planning begins with knowing your general and specific purpose, your time allotment, your audience, and the amount of information you have available. After you read, try the exercises at the end of the section.
- Choosing a speech topic involves knowing yourself and your audience; using efficient strategies; and understanding appeal, appropriateness, and ability. These are also steps that will lead to developing an effective thesis statement. After you read, try the exercises at the end of the section.
This section addresses the elements of the rhetorical situation and the ways that a presentation should be organized. Elements of focus are the "who", "what", "where", "when", "why", and "how" of your speech. After you read, try the exercises at the end of the section.
Read this section, which lists 17 purpose-specific organizing patterns for business communication speeches and gives step-by-step guidance for other styles, such as ceremonial, wedding, award, introduction, and other nonacademic functions. After you read, try the exercises at the end of the section.
Watch this video for some basic strategies for delivering your speech, including the use of technology, meeting your audience's needs, ensuring that the equipment is working properly, and more. Keep these tips in mind when delivering your future speeches.
5.2: Strategies for Maintaining Objectivity
These sections review the ways you can maintain objectivity and provide unbiased information to your audience. After you read, try the exercises at the end of the section.
Read this section, which gives tips for keeping your speech on target, interesting, and without bias.
5.3: Focusing on Your Audience
Read this section, which covers how an informative speech may explain, report, describe, or demonstrate how to do something in a way that engages your audience. After you read, try the exercises at the end of the section.
Successful speeches encourage active listening and use audience-centered approaches. This section describes several ways to motivate an audience by making material relevant and useful and by finding interesting ways to frame topics. After you read, try the exercises at the end of the section.
5.4: Informing through Effective and Ethical Speeches
Read this section, which describes how to give an ethical speech, especially when the purpose of that speech is to inform. It is important to be non-judgemental and honest in your approach. After you read, try the exercises at the end of the section.
This section discusses the content and function of the five parts of a presentation. After you read, try the exercises at the end of the section.
Read this section, which covers how speeches are built by using the five structural elements: attention statement, introduction, body, conclusion, and residual message. After you read, try the exercises at the end of the section.
Read this section, which lists 11 points to focus on to ensure that your speech is ethical. After you read, try the exercises at the end of the section.
5.5: Motivating and Persuading in a Speech
Read this section about the six principles of communication and how to incorporate them into your speeches where appropriate. The exercises at the end of the section will provide you with the opportunity to practice your skills.
This section reviews what persuasive speeches are designed to do: stimulate thought, convince, call to action, increase consideration, or develop tolerance of alternate perspectives. This section also provides a useful breakdown of different types of calls to action. After you read, try the exercises at the end of the section.
5.6: Language Obstacles and Cross-Cultural Communication
Read this section, which illustrates how language and culture can become obstacles in effective communication. Explore different cultural dimensions the impact of ethnocentrism. After you read, try the exercises at the end of the section.
Watch this video, which defines cross-cultural communication, breaks it down into different types, and gives some examples of communication challenges in cross-cultural communication. After watching this video, imagine that you are aware that the audience of your Rotary Club or Chamber of Commerce presentation will include the immigrant family who owns a shop next to your new office building. There will also be several members of the local women's entrepreneurial club. Consider how this knowledge will affect your presentation and the stories you will share with your audience.
5.7: Argumentative Strategies and Emotional Appeals
Read this section, which covers rhetorical and argumentative strategies for persuasion, how to appeal to emotions, and the circumstances under which you may choose to use these approaches. After you read, try the exercises at the end of the section.
Watch this video for more information about what makes an argument strong enough to be convincing. Afterwards, write a brief paragraph that summarizes what makes a strong argument.
5.8: Elevator Pitches and Sound Bites
Read this section, which provides a brief discussion about the role and creation of the brief sales pitch known as the elevator speech. After you read, try the exercises at the end of the section.
Watch these videos on how to refine your elevator speech techniques. After watching, craft a 60-second elevator speech that you would give to the president of your town's Rotary Club or Chamber of Commerce if you happened to find yourself sharing an elevator with them. If you can record your speech, consider posting the recording or a link to it on the discussion forum to get feedback from your colleagues.
These sections describe the traits of good sound bites and what makes them memorable. After you read, try the exercises at the end of the section.
Review these soundbites from prominent people. Consider the words and the ways they are delivered. As you develop soundbites for your own business needs, keep in mind how the media uses these kinds of messages to connect with audiences so that you can craft messages that the media will share.
5.9: Setting Agendas for Productive Meetings
Read this comprehensive list of the elements that characterize a formal business agenda, and the extensive list of strategies for ensuring that meetings are productive. After you read, try the exercises at the end of the section.
Watch this example of how to produce a meeting agenda. This video describes one of many options for using agendas to help ensure that meetings are run efficiently and effectively.
Unit 5 Assessment
- Receive a grade
Take this assessment to see how well you understood this unit.
- This assessment does not count towards your grade. It is just for practice!
- You will see the correct answers when you submit your answers. Use this to help you study for the final exam!
- You can take this assessment as many times as you want, whenever you want.