Slow Death by Powerpoint
Thanks for your news letter, haven't read it all yet, but it's all good stuff!
(Note of Explanation from me, Susan: This feedback from Colin came via my Speaking Out Loud newsletter. I'd included a snippet on the interview with Arte and Ram.)
The business presentation item I was very interested in. In an earlier lfe (not that long ago really) I designed and presented some courses to companies and just before my early retirement I ran some for through Adult Education. So your item about powerpoint resonated with me.
Possibly like yourself Susan, I have had to endure, as a matter of duty, 'a slow death by powerpoint'.
I use it and know it has incredible potential to reach folk but it's so often inappropriately designed! Actually I use the word designed loosely.
I have been involved with so many projects over the years and it seems that the first thing most executives get, when they know they have to present something, is this seemingly irresistable urge to start creating whiz-bang slides.
When I had the responsibility for overseeing the development of a presentation. I would simply stop them, and say, what is it you want to say? What information do you need to impart? What does the audience need?
Let's start with the content, the words.
What a shock it was often!
But seriously,I believe that powerpoint should simply be a visual support, particularly if you have a complex issue to cover.
It's an old chestnut I know, but so many presenters and trainers mis-quote and misuse Prof Mehrabians 1960's Communication Model, and seem to relegate the oral component in communication wrongly to 7% or even less!
Most audieces want to be spoken to and get irritated by irrelevant visual stuff. They know when a presenter is using powerpoint as a crutch or an easy out! But it is used like that so often in the boardrooms all over the world and I have personally often witnessed a presenter or trainer, actually sitting in front of their lap-top monitor and reading the text to their hapless audience!
...So sorry to go on Susan
Anyway, thanks once again for your very interesting newsletter.
So then I asked Colin if I could ask Arte to respond and publish the response for all to share. Yes, was his reply. You can read Arte's below.