Students of product design episode 7 covers how to give a concept design presentation to a small group, but the techniques can be used for presentations to much larger audiences and will also help with portfolio presentations.
A concept design presentation doesn't begin when you sit down in front of the client with a set of drawings, or when you're preparing those drawings a week before. It starts the moment you first meet the client, you need to build relationships. One key to this is to just be interested in the client, people are interesting and with just about everything in life things always go far better if you show you're interested in them. I once saw a quote by Bill Nye, 'Everyone you will ever meet knows something you don't'. So before the presentation, keep talking to your main contact, keep them updated with progress, be interested in what they're up to and their suggestions, good design, good relationships, good business is about continuous communication. The presentation doesn't end once you have shown the last concepts either. You need to close the presentation, by managing expectations, letting the client know when you will need a response to hit the next deadline, helping the client reach an informed decision, agreeing the next stage etc.
With any set of concepts, you'll have your favourite, often there's one that's stronger than the others, but any one of the designs a client chooses will be a good outcome, because they will be one of you or your teams designs, you can't loose, unless the client doesn't like any of them. If theres a design you're presenting that you really don't want them to choose, why is it in your presentation. Unless you have to present a series of concepts that a group of people came up with. Then there may be one you don't like, because we all like different things, but as long as it answers the brief, doesn't create confusion or you can't give a strong argument for leaving it out, then it should be included it in your presentation, to give the client breadth of choice. This is important to consider when you work in a team and also a good argument if it is your design that another member is trying to exclude.
There are masses of useful links out there to help so as promised in the video, here are some links not necessarily specific to product design which I like and think will be useful:
This is a good link to how to deal with clients who want to feature creep:
In the video I briefly cover how to calm nerves and one relaxation technique that has really helped me, relaxing my shoulders. This is a good link to more relaxation techniques and ways to deal with nerves.
Finally if you have specific questions not answered by a Google search, then you can always post a question on the forums at core77.com to get advice from industry professionals.
I hope you enjoy 'Students of Product Design Episode 7' and it helps when you have to give a concept design presentation.
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