Presentations - Advice on Cultural Differences


Analysing and using the language of advice to give recommendations on how to solve environmental problems

Presentations cultural differences

Presentations/ Language of advice/ Environmental services

Decide if each piece of advice below is:

  1. Probably a good idea in all countries
  2. Usually a good idea in my country, but maybe not such a good idea in some others
  3. Not usually a good idea in my country, but probably a good idea in some others
  4. Not a good idea in any country


  • You should start the presentation at the set time, even if some people still haven’t arrived
  • If someone comes in late, my suggestion is to stop your presentation until they have sat down
  • You should leave at least half an hour at the end of the presentation free because there will be lots of questions
  • I recommend telling people to keep all questions until the end because otherwise you will never finish your presentation
  • It’s best to make eye contact with the audience as you speak to them
  • It’s generally a good idea to pause after each section and check if everybody understood
  • I would advise you to tell as many jokes as possible to keep people interested
  • If there is silence from the audience, I would suggest asking them if everything is okay
  • When you want to show you are really getting serious, my advice would be to take off your jacket and roll up your shirt sleeves
  • If I were you, I’d finish at the set time even if there are still questions from the audience
  • If I was in your place, I’d watch people’s body language carefully and be worried if people cross their arms
  • Whatever you do, smile all the time
  • If you need to drink water during a presentation, make sure you pour it into a glass and don’t drink it out of the plastic bottle
  • You’d better wear bright colours to get everyone’s attention.
  • If it was me, I’d sit on the edge of a desk to show your “relaxed but attentive” attitude.
  • If I were in your position, I’d chat with people as they come into the room before your presentation starts.
  • You ought to spend a lot of time preparing the visuals for your presentation.
  • If someone in the audience closes their eyes when they are listening, you should assume that they are asleep.
  • Have you thought about asking particular people to ask you a question? That’s what I would do to get the Q and A session started.
  • Why don’t you give the presenter a round of applause when they finish the presentation? In my opinion, it’s the most polite thing to do.
  • You could try writing all measurements in metres and feet so that everyone in the audience can understand.
  • Make sure you aim your talk at the most important person in the room.
  • One idea is to write your presentation out in full and then just read it out to your audience

Read out one you agree with and see if other people have the same opinion.

Ask about any which you don’t understand, have no opinion about, etc.

Find language of advice in the sentences above (e.g. “You should…”)

Use similar language to give advice on these topics and see if other people agree.


Your children say they don’t like the taste of the tap water in your area



Your household water bill is too high


Crows, cats or foxes keep on breaking open your rubbish bags and scattering rubbish on your lawn

You get lots of condensation (water) on the inside of your windows during the winter


Your electricity bill is too high.


There is a hose pipe ban because of an especially hot summer and the plants in your garden are dying


You keep on getting mould in your bathroom



Water keeps on leaking from your fridge


About once a month, the local sewage pipes get blocked and sewage floods your garden.

The local council have reduced the number of rubbish collection days to once a week, so it smells before it is collected.


You want to be as green as you can.


The local residents have started a campaign to stop your company building a waste incinerator in their area


Your local council doesn’t collect garden waste.



The drain in the kitchen sink is blocked.


There is a false story in today’s newspaper about fluorine in the tap water being dangerous.


Your local beach is very polluted



All the fish have died in a local lake



The river near your house floods almost every year



Your factory is producing too much pollution



The drains in your house smell


Because the local water is very hard, you keep on getting hard white stuff on the inside of your kettle



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