Tuesday, August 20th, 2013
Jay-Z and JT Teach Team Presentations
I admit it! I’m a Jay-Z fan (sometimes) and a Justin Timberlake fan (sometimes). I went to their Holy Grail concert recently, and if you know anything about the music industry, hip hop or pop, the question before the show was: who is going to be the opening act? They’re both mega stars of their own right. To ask either to open for the other could be viewed as insulting.
The lights go down in the arena, the lights come up on the stage, music starts to play, but without real distinction, and then it’s clear…they’re opening together. They’re singing their duet, Holy Grail to start the show. Then my question was, who takes over from here?
Both! They did a medley, alternating songs for the next 15-20 minutes. Justin played guitar and piano for Jay-Z, and Jay-Z added some background vocals for Justin. Then they took turns holding the stage alone and concluded together with Suit and Tie.
So what does this have to do with anything? This was the perfect orchestration for team presentations. This is a careful, thoughtful execution of a well-mapped plan. If you’re in sales, an entrepreneur, a prime or sub-contractor, chances are you’ve had to deliver many team presentations to win business. How much time do you put into choreographing your presentation? I don’t expect you to break out in song and dance, but you should know who is doing what and when, at all times.
Here are some choreography tips for your next team presentation. Make sure you’ve designated the following:
- Who will open and how will you showcase the leaders as leaders at the beginning?
- How will you balance the presentation to show equity of responsibility and competency?
- What will the other team members be doing while the speaker is up? (operating the slides, showing the other visual aids, watching, etc.)
- How will you transition between speakers so it appears seamless and well-planned?
- Who will close and how will you showcase the leaders at the end?
- Who will answer questions on what topics?
- How will you add on to the other, if you need to?
- Who will close after the Q&A?
Careful choreography is as important to your presentation as it is in a high-energy concert. Take the time to map it out well in advance, so everyone gets the exposure that is commensurate with their role in the contract or business. Don’t forget to practice! Fred Astaire practiced for hours to make his craft appear effortless. To ensure your team looks effortless, you need to practice with your teammates.
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