You get asked to give an update to the team about the project you’re leading. Maybe you need to share a status update with your director. Now what?

I hear it time and time again: “Where do I start?!”  Most people start with a stack of recycled slides.   They wrestle with the deck, trying to put the content together in a way that makes sense.  That’s like putting together a 1000 piece puzzle- without knowing what the end picture is supposed to be!

Stop wasting your time.

Start here: Your Audience

Questions to ask about your audience:

  • What are they focused on?
  • What do they care about?
  • What are their top priorities?
  • When they wake up Monday morning, what are they thinking about?

What you thought you needed to update them on might not be on their list. So now you have to find a way to link your update to their priorities or they will never hear you.

If you’re speaking to multiple audiences, you’ll need to ask these questions more than once. For example – maybe you’re speaking to the sales and marketing teams as well as the technical team.  These audiences have very different priorities, but you need to be able to speak to all of them in a way that connects.

What if you don’t know what your audience’s focus is? You take the time to figure it out.  If not, it’s like shooting darts at a dartboard with a blindfold on.  If you present content that does not link to your audience’s focus, you run the risk of alienating them. Invest the effort ahead of time and find out who your audience is and – most importantly -what they care about.

Once you identify what your audience’s top priorities are, now you can start linking your topic to what they care about most.

One more nuance.  What if they don’t share with you who is going to be in the meeting?  Tell them you can’t do your job if you don’t have that information.

This week, slow down. Take 10 minutes (or less) to answer the key questions about your audience and I guarantee you will make more of an impact on them.

You will stand out, get noticed and be remembered.

Want more information on Audience Focus?  Click here: https://vimeo.com/159115452.