Managing Presentations at Board Meetings: 3 Rules for CEOs

One aspect of board dynamics that often gets overlooked is the importance of successful presentations. A good presentation can breathe life into a stale board. It can motivate and inspire the decision-makers of your company. The danger in presentations is that they can get off-topic or prevent the board from making efficient decisions. As a CEO or a board member, there are three basic rules to a successful presentation to prevent long-winded and ineffective presentations.

Rule #1: Set up an environment for engagement

Make sure that everyone can see the presenter and that the presenter is standing and making eye contact with the other members. Encourage board members to be respectful of the presenter and try to eliminate any distractions.

Rule #2: Use storytelling

Everyone can relate better to information if it is told in a relatable story. This technique brings the information to life and makes it easier for listeners to remember important information. Try to bring data back to the mission of the company. What do the numbers mean in relation to your goals and does it get you closer to your vision?

Rule #3: Set a time limit

Give your presenter a certain amount of time to complete their presentation. This will force them to present essential information in a creative way. Your board is more likely to be inspired and engaged by a short presentation than a meandering long one.

Strong presentation skills are the first step in communicating vital information for decision making.  At EmC Leaders we work with boards to enhance the presentation skills of board members. For more information, contact us. Whether you are sharing with your board members or your shareholders, a good presentation can make all the difference when moving your company forward. These three rules are just guidelines. Along with these CEOs should set a clear purpose for the presenter. The purpose should almost always start with “to assist board members in understanding information so they can make better decisions”.

By having successful presentations, board morale will increase as well as board performance. Clear and concise presentations trickle down to stockholders who have shown in recent months that strategy presentations lead to higher stock prices. One example of this is Alibaba’s CEO who made his global strategy clear to his stockholders. Almost immediately Alibaba saw a 1% increase in stock. A recent study shows an increase of up to 4% in stock prices of companies whose CEO presented strategy. This kind of culture starts in the board room and using the three rules of successful presentations, CEOs can work with their boards to develop strong strategies to present to their stockholders.

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