If you are getting ready to pitch a business to funders, you have probably spent months (if not years) preparing the speech that you are going to give. You’ve given the speech to friends and family, mirrors, pets, and perhaps even accounting firms who are helping you. All of this prep work has been put into place to give the best possible presentation you can, hopefully earning you the funding that you need.
With just a few days or hours to go, what are some last-minute things that you can do? Here are a few tips:
Make Sure That You Look The Part
In a perfect world, your appearance will not matter. However, we do not live in a perfect world. If you have kale in your teeth, a stain on your shirt or you are wearing two different shoes, you may not be doing yourself any favors. Anything that is “off” about your appearance can pull focus from your presentation. You want to make sure that you look your best. This doesn’t mean that you have to get your teeth whitened and get a thousand dollar haircut. Instead, it means that you have washed and brushed your hair, you have on a suit that is free from lint, stains, and wrinkles, and you generally have a professional appearance. If you wear make-up, ensure that it is tasteful and simplistic – now is not the time for purple lipstick.
When In Doubt – Go Off Book
We can try to plan all we want for situations, but sometimes things are just off. You cannot control if a potential investor had a fight with his teenage daughter that morning, got a flat tire, or just ate a bad breakfast. If you are standing in front of your potential investors and you just feel like something is going wrong, do not be afraid to go off-book. You don’t want to veer too far away from your initial plan, but you should be able to pivot if necessary. Maybe you want to pull away from your PowerPoint, insert an anecdote, or just give the group a minute to breathe.
Skip The Coffee
If you can avoid too much caffeine, try to do so. You don’t want to be too jittery or have too much energy. Coming at a group of investors with energy is a good thing, but being too hyperactive or shaking doesn’t send good signals. Instead, drink a normal amount of coffee or caffeine so that you do not get a headache, but don’t go overboard.
Do Drink Water
You do want to drink water before your presentation. Drinking water makes your brain run just a little bit better, which is good for those hard-hitting questions you will receive. You also don’t want to get dry mouth in the middle of your presentation – those little white spots on the side of your mouth can be distracting.
Remember To Give Yourself Time To Breathe
One of the biggest mistakes that people make when pitching a business is that they do not give themselves time to breathe. Before you start your presentation, take a deep breath. When you are finished with a point, take a breath. Take a few seconds longer than you think you should – the investors hearing your presentation will be glad for a moment to collect their own thoughts. It can also help you to pivot more gracefully and not run out of steam.
Need Help With Your Business Plan?
Do you have a great idea for a business but need funders and a business plan? At IC Quantum, we can help you to present a business plan that will have funders lining up for your services. We have years of experience in guiding people to make the right decisions about their business, starting with feasibility studies and ending with working hand-in-hand with them to handle the bookkeeping once their business has flourished.
Ready to get started? Give us a call today at +27 87 980 0000 or send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule an appointment.