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What you say matters: Bring executive presence to your presentation

When you present to leadership, you belong. Act like it, and don't rush.

2 min read


What you say matters: Bring executive presence to your presentation


Showing executive presence in presentations will give your words and opinions more power. As you begin all presentations, remember three things:

  • You don’t need to justify why you’re there
  • Speaking slowly will show confidence
  • People want to hear your ideas — and they need you to sound decisive

You already have credibility, so leverage it by jumping right in. You don’t have time to waste, and your audience doesn’t either—especially if you’re speaking to senior leadership. Don’t spend a lot of time trying to establish credibility on the spot. Know that your credibility has landed you here. After all, they invited you to give the presentation. Don’t act like you have to justify your presence or explain at length why you’re speaking on the topic at hand. Own your executive presence in your presentation and know you’re the best person to speak on it.

If you’re rushing through your presentation, you’re diminishing your gravitas and signaling that your topic isn’t worthy of your audience’s time and attention. That’s not true, so speak slowly and confidently, accentuating your points and giving your audience time to absorb them. Know deep down that you’re giving them the information they need. People are listening, and they need to hear decisiveness in your voice. They want you to communicate your ideas clearly so they can benefit from them. By sharing your ideas powerfully, you’ll shape organizational change that has lasting impact.

Joel Garfinkle provides corporate webinar trainings and virtual coaching sessions on executive presence. He is recognized as one of the top 50 coaches in the U.S., and the author of nine books, including “Executive Presence.” He recently developed a custom strategy for an introverted executive looking to become more commanding, confident, bold and decisive. Subscribe to his Fulfillment at Work Newsletter and receive the free  e-book “41 Proven Strategies to Get Promoted Now!” You can also view 75 of Garfinkle’s two-minute inspirational video clips at his YouTube channel.

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