Michelle Bowden female keynote speaker captivating the crowd at the LGFP Annual Conference in November 2023

What did we learn?

We present (persuade and influence) our family members, friends, clients, patients, colleagues and managers every day of our life. Our days and filled with negotiating, finding compromise, updating, advising, selling, influencing and persuading.

Most people forget that we are actually influencing people all the time, so they treat their communication scenarios like informal conversations and don’t analyse their stakeholder, prepare their message, and they definitely don’t take the time to rehearse. They are likely to ‘wing it’!

There are 3 phases to a persuasive presentation in business:

1. Analysis

2. Design

3. Delivery

Michelle Bowden presentation skills trainer with the 5 Step Analysis Model for the APS Indo-Pacific Program
Michelle Bowden presentation skills trainer with the 4Mat Model for the APS Indo-Pacific Program
Michelle Bowden presentation skills trainer's Think/Feel/Do slide from her presentation skills training 2024

Phase 1 Analysis

There’s a cool model called the 5 Step Analysis.

1. Topic

2. Goal

3. Purpose

4. Leading statement

5. Think/Feel/Do


Use this before every important email, meeting, conversation, coaching session, cinference presentation – everything!

4Mat is the model for crafting a message so it sticks in your stakeholder’s mind and they are compelled to take the action you require.

4Mat addresses the 4 x virtual questions in your stakeholder’s mind: ‘Why?’ ‘What?’ ‘How?’ ‘What if?’/’What else?’


How does this apply to your 5 minutes?

1. You talk about your challenge in your icebreaker and pacing and leading – in your ‘why?’

2. You cover your Analysis and Perspectives in your ‘what?’

3. And you cover your recommendations in your ‘how?’

4. You cover any further unique perspectives in your ‘what if?’/’what else’ section. Plus, be sure to call to action and close in your ‘what if?’ ‘what else?’P

Michelle Bowden, presentation skills trainer presents for Duco Limited in the Barossa Valley March 2024

An icebreaker is one way to hook the attention of your audience.

There are 3 steps to a great icebreaker: hook; intro/welcome; link to your content.


“Did you know in the last 3 years, 50% of projects in XYZ portfolio at one point or another were in an idle state (pause).

And 80% of these projects were awaiting external vendor inputs?

In total we spent  X $ on project run costs in that idle state.

It’s unacceptable.

Good day, I am (name), Project Manager for XYZ, and today let’s talk through

a) the project blockers that have brought our projects to an idle state,

b) a way forward from here.”

Rapport is all about a relationship or connection with your stakeholders. It’s easier to build rapport with people who are like you. The important thing you need to do is create commonality between you and your stakeholder, even if you feel very different to them. You need to ‘pace’ them.


Pacing is being as ‘like’ the stakeholder as possible. You build rapport though matching, mirroring (pacing) people’s body language, eye contact, voice, language, interests, dress and attitudes (to name just a few areas).


The way that you pace someone’s attitude is with universals and truisms. Universals and truisms are statements that reflect back to the other party what they already know to be true. We call them ‘pacing statements’ because universals and truisms ‘pace’ your stakeholder’s attitudes.

Michelle Bowden female speaker's slide from her Welcome to the Birdcage: how persuasion smart are YOU? keynote

Your leading statement is your key message, it’s often contentious and it must be reasonable. Your leading statement is the main thing you want your audience to believe about this matter. 


Remember, you don’t have permission to lead an audience without first pacing them.


The number of pacing statements that you need to use to be a master of influence is directly related to your existing level of rapport. Note that you can be in (or out) rapport using two separate criteria: 1. Personally; 2. Contextually. If rapport is non-existent using either criteria you need at least 3 pacing statements before you lead.


The filter that determines our propensity to accept information on face value or not is called the Matcher/Mismatcher filter. People with a matching preference look for what matches what they know to be true. People with a mismatching preference look for what is different to what they know to be true – where their reality is different to the presenter’s reality.


To meet the needs of your stakeholder, avoid absolutes in your pacing statements such as “never”, “all”, “everyone”, “must”, “should” and use CABS instead: “or not”, “many”, “most”, “some”, “few”.


Remember when it comes to persuasion, “No” is just feedback that you didn’t pace enough or properly. “Yes” is feedback that you did.

Some final steps of the Persuasion Blueprint are:

Other Info – “by the way…”

In summary – 3 key messages 

Call to action – clear, direct, and explicit

Closing Statement – short, punchy, sells the sizzle!

An example of the 5 Step Analysis

Michelle Bowden presentation skills trainer with the 'worked' example for the 5 Step Analysis model for the APS Indo-Pacific Program

An example of the Persuasion Blueprint

Michelle Bowden presentation skills trainer with the 'worked' example for the 4Mat model for the APS Indo-Pacific Program
Michelle Bowden presentation skills trainer with the 'worked' example for the 4Mat model for the APS Indo-Pacific Program
Michelle Bowden, presentation skills trainer, delivering virtual presentation skills

Today is the day to make a serious decision to take your communication seriously. Please use the template as often as possible to ensure your ongoing success.   I love you all!  Go well!


I know you know this, it’s not rocket science, so take the time to plan your meetings in advance, analyse your performance at the conclusion of every meeting and continuously strive to be an power persuader who hears the word ‘yes’ more often!

Please connect to me on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/michellebowdenenterprises/

Who are the prize winners?

Tamara Bell

Laura McGrath

Tanya Spisbah

David Hall

Kristin Dobbs

Congrats and thanks for participating! 

Michelle Bowden Presentation Skills Training

©2024 MICHELLE BOWDEN is an authority on persuasive presenting in business.

Michelle has delivered her Persuasive Presentation Skills Masterclass over 1000 times for more than 13,000 people over the past 25 years and her name is a synonym for ‘presentation skills’ in Australia.

Michelle is a multi-million-dollar pitch coach to her client list that reads like a who’s who of international business: banking and finance, IT, pharmaceutical, retail, telecommunications plus many more.

Michelle is the creator of the Persuasion Smart Profile®, a world-first psychological assessment tool that reports on your persuasive strengths and weaknesses at work, the best-selling internationally published author of How to Present: the ultimate guide to presenting live and online (Wiley) and her new book is called How to Persuade: the skills you need to get what you want (Wiley).


Visit www.michellebowden.com.au