Gauthier Valérie

Communication in Action

A Business Presentation Skills Workshop for HEC MBA Participants
To boost oral communications performance
Valérie Gauthier
Associate Dean, HEC MBA, and Professor of Business Communication and Intercultural Management

Fact: In today’s business world, good communication skills are no longer a plus; they are vital. Having the most amazing business ideas is one thing, communicating those ideas to inspire others is quite another. 
For MBA graduates, oral communication skills are among the top 5 most important core competencies listed in the GMAC Corporate Recruiters Survey, 2006. The so-called "soft skills" - in reality core managerial competencies - are among the top 3 hiring criteria. The survey also states that oral communication skills need to be strengthened.
Once you graduate with an MBA from HEC, you become a representative of your Business School, your MBA program, and, of course, yourself. If you can stand up in front of a business audience and communicate with confidence, style, and passion you will get noticed. This can only have a positive impact on your career, your employer, your school, your MBA program, and your fellow HEC Alumni.


The skills that you will acquire and develop through this workshop are also transferable to other settings, such as job interviews, group work, and public speaking events. These skills will become a core component of a wider spectrum of communication practices that you are expected to master, and for which you can never have enough training.


Whether you are pitching to potential clients for that crucial contract, launching a new product or service, presenting at a conference or live event, or delivering a key message to a team, to the board, or to stakeholders, people need to be convinced by what you are saying.


Objectives: the workshop is specifically designed to help you…

• Assess and understand your audience, in order to capture their attention
• Decide exactly what it is you need to say
• Structure a clear and concise message that gets to the point and respects time constraints
• Adopt the key personal skills that enable you deliver a professional presentation
• Understand the vital impact of effective body language and put it into practice
• Develop strong vocal skills and use them to maximise audience attention
• Use professional techniques to overcome nerves and enhance your confidence
• Give solo presentations that have a strong impact
• Deliver group presentations as a strong, unified team
• Improve your presentations in English, when it is not your native language
• Produce powerful visual aids
• Handle questions with confidence and authority


All participants will deliver both an individual and a group presentation. The presentations are filmed, and the footage is immediately made available online. Group observation and constructive criticism play a key role during the workshop, as well as in other communication settings that extend beyond the classroom. The style of the workshop is lively, informative, and highly interactive. The evaluation form provided for the workshop is a guide for assessing each individual and group performance, according to precisely defined criteria.


Building on the workshop, the Apple Podcast solution, developed through the HEC-Apple project, will provide you with the unique opportunity to view all of the communication experiences you will acquire throughout the 16-month HEC MBA program and allow you to receive assessment and advice from trained specialists.