PSU Insight

Preparation is the Key

PPQ — Challenges and Issues

Now let's consider some questions about your client that you may want to ask —

  • What are the major challenges faced by the people who will be attending our program?

  • Are there any particular topics or issues that I should address during my program?

  • Are there any sensitive issues that I should avoid?

  • What significant events have occurred within your industry or to your group during the past year?

  • What interesting events have occurred within your industry or to your group during the past year?

  • What are some industry-specific terms, phrases, jargon, or acronyms that I might incorporate into my presentation?

Speakers vary as to the degree of customization that they do for their clients. However much (or little) you may choose to customize, these questions can give you some invaluable information for personalizing your presentation.

Be sure that you know how to properly pronounce any industry-specific terms or jargon that may be suggested to you, and how to use them in the proper context. You’re using such terms to build a bond between you and your audience; nothing tears it down faster than using a term improperly or mispronouncing it.

(For example, in the real estate industry a property that’s for-sale-by-owner is referred to as a “FSBO”, but it’s pronounced “Fizz – Boh”. Spelling it out would brand you as an amateur.)

The same caution applies to the pronunciation of people’s names. And, of course, you should know how to properly spell and pronounce the name of the organization that’s paying you to speak!

(You may think I’m being paranoid in suggesting that, but I was in the audience once where the speaker had misspelled the corporation’s name — a Fortune 100 company — on every PowerPoint slide he used. Needless to say, his credibility was somewhat diminished.)