State your purpose

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It is important to state your purpose clearly at the beginning of your talk. Here are some ways to do this:

talk about = to speak about a subject

  • Today I’d like to talk about our plans for the new site.
  • I’m going to be talking to you about the results of our survey.

report on = to tell you about what has been done.

  • I’m going to be reporting on our results last quarter.
  • Today I will be reporting on the progress we have made since our last meeting.

take a look at = to examine

  • First, let’s take a look at what we have achieved so far.
  • Before we go on to the figures, I’d like to take a look at the changes we have made.

tell you about = to speak to someone to give them information or instructions

  • First, I will tell you about the present situation, then go onto what we are going to do.
  • When I have finished, Jack will then tell you about what is happening in Europe.

show = to explain something by doing it or by giving instructions.

  • The object of this morning’s talk is to show you how to put the theory into practice.
  • Today I’m going to show you how to get the most out of the new software.

outline = to give the main facts or information about something.

  • I’d like to outline the new policy and give you some practical examples.
  • I will only give you a brief outline and explain how it affects you.


fill you in on = to give some extra or missing information

  • I’d like to quickly fill you in on what has happened. 
  • When I have finished outlining the policy, Jerry will fill you in on what we want you to do.

give an overview of = to give a short description with general information but no details.

  • Firstly, I would like to give you a brief overview of the situation.
  • I’ll give you an overview of our objectives and then hand over to Peter for more details.

highlight = draw attention to or emphasize the important fact or facts.

  • The results highlight our strengths and our weaknesses.
  • I’d now like to go on to highlight some of the advantages that these changes will bring.

discuss = to talk about ideas or opinions on a subject in more detail.

  • I’m now going to go on to discuss our options in more detail.
  • After a brief overview of the results, I’d like to discuss the implications in more detail.