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To have a project succeed, you must know how to present and defend it. Two key events on this subject for the student of the Masters in Management entrance seminar: the conference with Stéphane de Freitas and the presentation on the art of the pitch.

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Stéphane de Freitas, the secrets of eloquence

Stéphane de Freitas is a French artist, director and social entrepreneur. He is the creator of the Eloquentia public speaking programmes, and social support network Indigo.
Upon becoming a high-level athlete, Stéphane de Freitas went through a dramatic change in his social environment when he left the suburban area of his birth to live in the 16th arrondissement in Paris. He found himself confronting the limits of his way of speaking, which prevented him from expressing and asserting himself. That experience would become the basis for the projects that he works on today.
In front of the students, he spoke of the importance of the different levels and forms of language and the linguistic habits belonging to certain places and backgrounds, which need to be discarded in order to adopt a way of speaking that everyone can clearly hear and understand.
“When faced with societal challenges, if we cannot manage to have a dialogue in a world full of different voices, the world of tomorrow will be impossible.”
How can you speak so that the last rows of the audience can hear you? How can you get rid of certain verbal habits and tics? How can you master your own body language? In an entertaining way, Stéphane de Freitas placed students in a scenario and had them participate as a group in the amphitheatre. It was an impressive exercise for our first-year students in Reims who had to speak in front of 500 people!

The pitch: 1’30 to convince the jury
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After three days spent developing their projects, the students needed to present them. The people chosen to make the pitch from each team had 1’30 on stage to convince the jury. Eight teams out of an initial 48/60 would go on to a second test: the 3’30 pitch.
To prepare themselves, the students received advice from Jérôme Nassibou, manager of the incubator Innovact (Reims), Nicolas Bazin, stage director (Rouen) and Hadrien Simon, entrepreneur and lecturer (Rouen), coaches during Starting Days, and NEOMA student associations Entrepreneurship Club (NEC) and Déclic Entreprendre (Entrepreneurship Clubs), and NEOMA Reims Conseil and Altéo Conseil (Junior Entreprises).
The four points that make the pitch, how to move from 1’30 to 3’30, the thinking hats theory… Everything you need to know to succeed in a short persuasive conversation.

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More about Starting Days:
- At NEOMA, the start of the new school year is synonymous with Starting Days!
- STARTING DAYS: innovative and experience-based pedagogy
- The Green Team on a mission to promote social responsibility amongst new students
 Boosting social entrepreneurship: focus on the Starting Days Incubator Awards