Business English: Presentations Vocabulary
types of presentations
Melanie Kray is an expert in giving presentations. She gives some examples of different presentations:
• press conference: two chief executives tell journalists why their companies have merged.
• briefing: a senior officer gives information to other officers about a police operation they are about to undertake.
• demonstration: the head of research and development tells non-technical colleagues about a new machine.
• product launch: a car company announces a new model.
• lecture: a university professor communicates information about economics to 300 students.
• talk: a member of a stamp-collecting club tells other members about 19th century British stamps.
• seminar: a financial adviser gives advice about investments to eight people.
• workshop: a yoga expert tells people how to improve their breathing techniques and gets them to practise.
What makes a Good Presentation?
- Remember your audience (how many people there will be, who they are, why they will be there, and how much they know about the subject)
- Establish clear objectives in the introduction
- Organize the information
- Design an overall structure which is clear
- Link the different sections together
- Communicate using the allotted time
- Use visuals effectively
- Handle aids and equipment professionally
- Maintain relaxed attitude: remain confident and positive
- Use eye contact to engage your audience
- Use movement and gestures
- Use your voice effectively: volume, rhythm and pause
- Adjust complexity / formality of language to the audience
- Prepare thoroughly
- Write brief notes to assist
- Practise before the real thing
DO's and don'ts for a Good Presentation
- establish a clear objective.
- talk about what your audience expect you to talk about
- organize the information.
- use notes or key words to assist.
- have a strong opening and close.
- make it interesting.
- use your voice for effect.
- keep it simple.
- use visuals which improve impact and clarity.
- handle equipment professionally.
- speak with sufficient volume and intonation.
- use summaries to link the parts.
- think about the cultural environment.
- dress for the occasion.
- prepare and practise beforehand.
- be confident and relaxed.
- balance spontaneity against preparation.
- handle questions positively.
- present information which is too complex for the audience. 🧩
- talk for too long.
- tell irrelevant anecdotes or inappropriate jokes.
- speak too quickly.
- use too many visuals.
- photocopy small text onto an overhead.
- read from a scripted text or visuals.
- block your audience’s view of a visual.
- talk with your back to the audience.
- use distracting mannerisms.
- forget to summarize at the end.
Key language for Introductions
- Good morning / afternoon / evening!
- Let me just start by introducing myself.
- My name is …… As some / most of you already know, I am …….
- I’m in charge of / responsible for ……
- I’m the new ……..
Title / subject
- The title / subject / topic of today’s presentation / talk is …..
- Today I’d like to speak about …..
- What I’d like to talk about is …..
- Today’s topic is of particular interest to those of you/us who…
- My talk is particularty relevant to those of us who…
- By the end of this talk you will be familiar with…
- The objective of this presentation is to present ….
- This talk will act as a springboard for discussion.
- The aim today is to give some background about ….
- Our goal is to determine how…./the best way to…
- What I want to show you is…
- Today I’d like to give you an overview of….
- Today I’ll be showing you/reporting on…
- I’d like to update you on/inform you about…
main parts / outline
- I’ve divided / I split my talk into four main parts / sections.
- Firstly, what I want to do is give you some background ….
- Secondly / Thirdly, we will look at / move on to …
- Then/ Next / After that / Finally, I will speak about I examine….
- In my presentation, I’ll focus on three major issues.
- I will be using the whiteboard and flip chart.
- I will be using the overhead projector.
- The presentation will take I last about …. minutes.
- I will speak for about …. minutes.
- I plan to be brief. We’ll make it in about … minutes.
- If you have any questions, please feel free to interrupt.
- Please interrupt me as we go along if you have any questions.
- I’d be glad to take any questions at the end of my presentation
- I know that you have all travelled a long way.
- I’m very grateful that you could come today.
- It’s nice to see so many faces.
- First of all, let me thank you all for coming here today.
- It’s a pleasure to welcome you today.
- I’m happy/delighted that so many of you could make it today.
- It’s good to see you all here.
- OK. Let’s start with the first point which is …..
- We can begin by looking at…..
- To begin with, / First of all,/ I’d like to start with
present the main body
- Firstly, / Secondly, / Thirdly, / Then, / Next, / Finally ….
- The first / second / third / final point is ….
ending a section
- Right/ So I Well/ OK ….
- That’s all I wanted to say about … .
- I think that covers everything on …
- I think that deals with ….
- Are there any questions or comments on that?
- Would anyone like to ask a question at this point?
opening a new section
- Let’s now look at ….
- Now I want to turn to ….
- This brings me to the third and final point which is ….
- This leads directly to my next point.
- This brings us to the next question.
- Let’s now move on/turn to…
- After examining this point, let’s turn to…
- Let’s now take a took at …
Exploring a list of points
- In relation to ….
- Regarding ….
- Concerning ….
- With respect to ….
- In addition to this …. / Moreover ….
- However …. / Despite this ….
- So … / Therefore ….
- Besides, / Next, /First, second, third ….
- What is more,
- as well as
- Another important …. is…..
- In addition to
- Let me now return to ….
- Let me now come back to ….
- I’d like to emphasize ….
- I’d like to stress ….
- I should reiterate / repeat … …..
- It is critical / essential to understand ..
- What we can’t do is …
- What I’d like to do is ….
- What we have been able to do is ….
- What is really important is ….
- This is a very, very difficult problem.
- We thought for a long, long time about this.
- We need to do something, and we need to do it now.
- We did achieve many things last year.
- It does seem to be the best solution.
- We did think very carefully about this.
- To be honest. … / Frankly speaking, ….
- Basically, … / To put it simply, ….
- In other words, ….
- It would be better to say….
- A total / absolute / complete disaster…..
- A great / outstanding / remarkable success….
- Totally unacceptable /Quite brilliant….
compare and Contrast
- Actually …. / In fact …. / In reality…
- On the contrary / but / however / yet
- Although / Nevertheless / nonetheless
- in spite of … / despite ….
- the one …./ the other
- either… or / neither….nor
- not only … but also
- equally / similarly /in the same way
- alternatively / In contrast
- In comparison with / Compared with ….,
- The same holds true about…
- completely / totally different
- almost / exactly the same
- complete opposites
- have a lot / little / much / nothing in common
- have one similarity / some similarities
- nearly the same / rather similar
- virtually identical / basically the same
- slightly different
- The main (noticeable) difference is….
- I believe,
- In my view,
- I have mixed views about this issue
- As a matter of fact,
- I’m inclined to believe that…
- It is my belief that…
- It could be argued that…
- One explanation might be that…
- This suggests that…
- as a rule
- in general
- on the whole
- as a general rule
reasons and consequences
- The main reason why this happens is
- There can be several explanations to this.
- Given this,
- Therefore, thus
- On this basis,
- I would suggest…. (a step-by-step approach)
- There can be several approaches suggested.
- I suppose that
- More people will probably
- Based on past experience, I would predict that
- It is likely that
- In fact,
- Well, on the whole I tend to think that…
- it is probable that
- On the whole,
- To sum up,
- In conclusion,
- To conclude,
- It can be concluded / deduced / inferred that…
- To summarize, ….
- such as
- …one of which is….
- For example,
- For instance,
- To illustrate my point, I would like to tell you about…
- One example of
- This can be illustrated by….
- …. is well illustrated by….
- This can be exemplified by….
- could possibly
- I am confident that,
- certainly/ definitely/ clearly
- there is no doubt that
- convincing argument
- there is little doubt that
- it is certain that
- it can be safely assumed that
- With the help of
- In order to
- According to
- Instead of
- As regards
- In respect of something
- With respect to
- With regard to/In regard to
- By means of
- For the sake of
- With the purpose of
- In accordance with something
- In case
- In lieu of
- In place of somebody/something
- Many thanks for your attention. So now I’m very interested in hearing your comments.
- And now, if you have any questions, I’ll be happy to answer them.
- Now we have half an hour for questions and comments.
- So, now I’d be happy to hear your comments.
- That’s a fair question. / That’s a very good question.
- Thank you for your question.
- I’m glad you asked that.
- Thank you for giving me the opportunity to comment on that.
- Thank you for raising this point.
- That’s a good / difficult / complex / an interesting question.
- Thank you for asking that question.
- I’m glad someone asked that question. It allows me to say ….
Check your answer
- Does that answer your question?/ Is that OK?
- Is that clear now?
- Can we move on?
- If I understand you correctly, you want to know ….
- You’re asking me about …. Is that right?
- Could you repeat for me, please?
- In other words, you’re asking ….
- I see. So, what you’re asking is: …
- OK, let me just repeat your question so everybody can hear it.
- If I could just rephrase your question …
- I’m sorry. Could you repeat your question, please?
- I’m afraid I didn’t quite catch that.
- I’m afraid I don’t quite understand your question.
- That’s not what I’m saying…
- You mean, …
- Are you asking….
- Could you be a little more precise ?
- I was interested in your comments about … Could you say a little more about that?
- Let me check I understand. Are you asking about….
- As I said earlier, in the first section I at the end of the second section ….
- Yes, I mentioned in the introduction ….
- As I said I pointed out I explained earlier, ….
- I think I already made it clear that ….
- I accept that.
- That’s a fair point.
- I agree with what you’re saying.
- Up to a point, I agree.
- Right, I can see what you’re getting at.
- Mhmmm. You may have a point there.
- Yes, there’s something to that.
Uh huh, that makes sense.
Putting off the question
- I accept that./ That’s a fair point./ I agree with what you’re saying.
- I’d be glad to discuss that with you personally after the presentation.
- Perhaps we could deal with this after the presentation/at some other time.
- I’m afraid that’s not really what we’re here to discuss today.
- I’ll be happy to answer that later when we talk about …..
- Can we come back to that issue in a bit when we go through …..
- Let’s put off that topic for now. I’d like to deal with that in more detail during / when …..
avoiding the question
- I’m afraid I can’t really answer that.
- That’s not really my area I field, I’m afraid.
- I don’t have the figures with me.
- I’m afraid that question goes beyond the subject of today’s presentation.
- I’m afraid that’s confidential.
- I’m not at liberty to give you that information.
- Well, that depends on what you mean by ….
- Well, it ‘s a very complicated matter…
- Well there are various ways of looking at it.
The audience doesn't understand
- Let me go over that again.
- Perhaps I should mention ….
You are lost
- Now, where was I?
You don't know how to answer
- Now let me think for a second….
- Sorry, that’s not my field. But I’m sure …. could answer your question.
- I’m afraid I don’t know the answer to your question, but I’ll try to find out for you.
- I’m afraid I’m not in a position to answer / to comment on that.
- Perhaps, ….. could help.
- Great question. It’s a little outside of my job scope, though.
- I don’t know that off the top of my head, but I’ll try to find out for you.