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Presenting Like a Pro: Business English for Giving Effective Presentations


  • Understand the key elements of a successful presentation in a business setting.

  • Develop effective strategies for organizing and delivering a presentation.

  • Improve English language skills related to presenting and public speaking.

Level: Intermediate to Advanced

Duration: approximately 90 minutes

Materials: (included below)

  • Whiteboard or blackboard

  • Markers

  • Handouts with vocabulary and presentation structure

  • Access to computers or mobile devices for online exercises

1. Warm-up Activity: Start the class with a warm-up activity to get the students thinking about presentations. Ask the students to brainstorm a list of elements that make a presentation successful, such as clear visuals, engaging delivery, and well-organized content. Have the students share their ideas with the class and write them on the board.

2. Presentation Skills Vocabulary: Introduce key vocabulary related to presentation skills, such as:

  • Opening and closing a presentation

  • Engaging the audience

  • Using visual aids

  • Maintaining eye contact

  • Speaking clearly and confidently

  • Answering questions

(on handout)

3. Presentation Structure: Discuss the structure of a presentation, including:

  • Introduction: setting the stage for the presentation and engaging the audience.

  • Body: presenting the main content of the presentation, organized into clear and concise sections.

  • Conclusion: summarizing the key points and providing a call to action.

4. Presentation Practice: Divide the students into small groups and have them prepare and deliver short presentations. Provide each group with a topic related to their field, such as a new product launch or a business strategy update. Encourage the groups to use the presentation skills vocabulary and structure discussed in class.


Other possible short topics:

  1. Introducing your company or product

  2. Presenting a project proposal to your team or manager

  3. Giving a sales pitch for a product or service

  4. Discussing market trends and analysis in your industry

  5. Analyzing financial reports and data for your company

  6. Presenting your resume and qualifications in a job interview

  7. Explaining a new policy or procedure to your team

  8. Pitching a new business idea to potential investors

  9. Demonstrating a new technology or software to colleagues

  10. Discussing strategies for improving workplace productivity

After each group presents, have the class provide feedback on what worked well and what could be improved.

5. Presentation Delivery: Discuss effective presentation delivery techniques, such as:

  • Maintaining a confident and engaging posture

  • Speaking clearly and at an appropriate pace

  • Using gestures and facial expressions to convey meaning

  • Using vocal inflection to emphasize key points

  • Managing nerves and anxiety

6. Interactive Activity: Have the students practice their delivery skills in an interactive activity, such as an improvisational speaking exercise. In this activity, one student starts speaking on a topic, and another student interrupts and takes over the presentation, continuing to build on the original topic. This activity encourages students to think on their feet and adapt to changing circumstances, important skills for successful presentations.

If your students are more advanced, turn this into a more fun activity using topics such as these:

  1. Giving a presentation on the benefits of a unicorn as a business partner

  2. Responding to unexpected objections or questions during a sales pitch for a new superhero gadget

  3. Explaining a complex concept using only emoji or meme language

  4. Negotiating with a mermaid or Bigfoot as your client or customer

  5. Handling a conflict or disagreement with a time-traveling colleague or team member

  6. Giving a motivational speech to inspire your team of superheroes to save the world

  7. Making a persuasive argument for a robot as a replacement for a human colleague

  8. Brainstorming solutions to a business problem with a group of aliens or zombies

  9. Role-playing a job interview with a celebrity as the challenging interviewer

  10. Delivering an elevator pitch for a new business idea in the style of a rap battle

7. Conclusion: Wrap up the lesson by summarizing the key points discussed in class, and encouraging the students to practice their presentation skills regularly. Remind them that effective presentations take time and effort to prepare, but can be extremely valuable in the business world.

8. Homework/Assessment: To assess student learning, have the students prepare and deliver a longer presentation on a business-related topic. Provide a rubric for the presentation, including elements such as content, delivery, visual aids, and audience engagement.

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