You’ve dazzled the audience with your brilliantly constructed powerpoint presentation, shuffled your papers on the lectern, banged them on the end to align them, given a half hearted smile and said,
Well, that’s it. Any questions?
I’ve seen plently of people do similar. What a lame ending!
Your conclusion should incorporate these elements.
Summary of Major Points
You might like to show the agenda slide again and summarise from that. Emphasise your main points with passion and conviction.
What you’ve seen this morning is how the government neglects the sciences through inadequate funding, the result of this on our research programs and the action required by all of you to turn this around. It’s not going to be easy, but it will need your feedback to your local representative’s and your company’s feedback in industry forums.
You’ll encounter many blocks on this road to nation building but don’t be dissuaded, it’s vital for our future!
Ask for Questions and Feedback
You’ve been presented with some controversial information and challenged to task yourself to turn things around. What’s your opinion?
This is a crucial time in the presentation and one of those where you must use silence to effect. Someone will start speaking and you can expect a lively session of Q and A. In a sales presentation, this is where you will get a lot of information on the status of your propsal and a lot of ideas to close the deal because if you ask, they will tell you what they really think. It’s far better to do this than “hope” that things went well.
Call to Action
Never leave a presentation without a call to action. Why did you give the presentation? Probably because you wanted people to do something. Ask them to do it! Get them to make a commitment.
You’ve been presented with a lot of information.
You’ve asked a lot of questions today, that I’ve been able to answer for you.
You’ve been most generous with your time.
What are our next steps?
More silence. Let them tell you. If they’re ready to commit, they will, if they’re not, they won’t. Trying to close someone who is not ready will only cause future problems.
Thank the audience and invite them to chat with you after the meeting.