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FP&A Professionals, Do You Deliver Effective Presentations?

  • By Andrew Deichler
  • Published: 9/26/2017

How do you deliver a presentation to your peers? How about to the CEO? Obviously those two presentations are going to differ a great deal. And if they don’t? You’re either doing something really right, or—more likely—doing something very wrong.

Presentations are key cog in your department’s overall communication plan—and the most important part of communication is to make sure that your audience “gets” your message. That means considering your audience, the situation, their goals, and your goals.

In AFP’s latest FP&A Guide, underwritten by Workiva, we explore tactics that FP&A professionals can use for delivering effective presentations, both to other business units, and to upper management and the board of directors. Following a number of in-depth conversations with the membership and the FP&A Council, AFP realized it was time to publish a how-to manual on how FP&A professionals can improve communication with their peers and superiors.

“As we get into conversations with our business partners and increasingly with executive management, we want to know how to be effective,” said Bryan Lapidus, FP&A, CFO Advisory for Allegiance Advisory Group and a contributing consultant for AFP. “How do we deliver value? It’s not simply handing out printouts of Excel spreadsheets. How can we deliver insight that’s meaningful and build those partnerships throughout the organization?”

The guide contains three sections that will support the FP&A professional in effective communications. First is an examination of periodic performance reviews; second is excellence in executive reviews, and third are ways to improve effectiveness in preparing for both situations.

According to research by the Carnegie Institute of Technology, 85 percent of one’s financial success is their ability to communicate. Presenting to the business units and senior leadership are two opportunities to excel in communication. Whoever the audience, it is imperative that FP&A professionals convey their message in a way that they can comprehend, while also being prepared and detailed enough that there is no doubt that FP&A is the authority on the insight that is being delivered.

Download the FP&A Guide to Delivering Effective Presentations here.

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