Pitch Perfect

What makes a business pitch perfect?

Model UN (a UN-simulation competition) has helped me uncover the answer.

I remember my first MUN conference back in freshman year. I had not done enough research or had prepared any speeches; this certainly wasn’t helpful when I tried to negotiate with students who knew the topic from head to toe. For many conferences afterwards, I spent nights researching better solutions and preparing stronger arguments- all in hopes that I would get noticed. Somehow, nothing seemed to work and I continued to remain largely ignored by other contestants. Every time, I assumed this was because I had not prepared as much for the negotiations as I should have.

Then during one conference, I noticed another girl dominate the committee room. She looked people in the eye and spoke to them, her voice dramatic and stern. Her back was straight, and her hands made decisive gestures. People waited for her opinion, and it was almost as if they were hypnotized by her her voice.

I realized that her confidence was why she had a large presence in the room. Inspired, I began to ask myself: “Is my voice loud and clear?” “Is my back straight?” “Do I sound like I really believe in my idea?”

My answer to all of these questions was a “no.”

It was only after I worked hard to change all my answers to a “yes” that things began to change. People began to listen to what I had to say. They valued my opinions and gave me more attention, respect, and value as a competitor.

The way you present your idea and how much you believe in it is equally important to what the actual idea is. When presenting a pitch, your confidence (or lack thereof) is ultimately the biggest thing listeners will remember about you.

- Hanna Suh, CMO

James Chang-Davidson