Big budgeting projects in large corporates usually end with a short 30 minute meeting with a very senior executive who needs to approve 3 months of work. Of course you have sent the 300 pager the night before. There are a few things that you can do to make the meeting run smoothly.
- Top down data, start with an overview, the overall budget, then drill down into components. Make sure the components add back up to the total. You have been working on the figures for 3 months, the CFO might see them for the first time and she needs to be people to create a mental picture of the entire data ocean quickly.
- Focus on the important, controversial issues where you need guidance. These are not always the biggest numbers.
- Make trade-offs you made very transparent, lots of pro-s and con-s charts that shows that you have thought about things and that you made the sensible decision.