Ideally you’d spend hours, even days putting together a speech or presentation, but life and work doesn’t always afford us the time we need. However, you can approach the problem as a structured, step-by-step process, rather than a frantic race to the finish line.
Deborah Grayson Riegel at The Muse has written a guide for compiling a presentation in 30 minutes. Of course, the steps are just as applicable if you have more time:
Minutes 1 Through 5: Figure Out Your “Who”
Minutes 5 Through 7: Figure Out the Medium
Minutes 7 Through 12: Figure Out Your “What”
Minutes 12 Through 24: Write it Out
Minutes 24 Through 29: Practice
Minutes 29 Through 30: Breathe
The most critical step is actually writing the words — Grayson Riegel offers the following advice for getting your topics in order and committed to paper:
Now that you have your key sentence for each topic, build on it using the PREP formula (Point, Reason, Example/Evidence/Experience, Point):
Point: Our current headcount works because it has to, but it’s not great.
Reason: The reason I say that is because we have a smart, strategic, and committed—but very lean—team.
Example/Evidence/Experience: One example of this is when we had a rush order for Widget Y over the holiday season, and our team was able to increase production without sacrificing quality or cost. It took a toll on our team, of course, because we were operating with a bare minimum of staff.
Point (recap): And that’s why I say our current headcount works, but could be be improved.
Hit up The Muse for a breakdown of the rest of the steps.