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  • Lech Guzowski

Death by PowerPoint*

Most people create their presentations in a very direct way: I have things to say, I will list them, slide by slide.

It's (arguably) acceptable at presenter level 1. The main issue is that this approach doesn't consider the audience; do they want to listen? are they even the right target?

Let's look at a correlation:

  • meetings dominate our working lives

  • many people find meetings boring and ineffective

  • presentations, in various guises, are a big part of meetings

  • most presentations are at presenter level 1

  • if we improve presentations, we will make meetings more engaging

  • if we make meetings more engaging, people might actually enjoy them

  • if people enjoy them, better and quicker decisions can be made

  • if... the list could go on

Taking your presentation to the next level starts with two questions: who is this presentation for? and what change am I seeking to make?

These two simple questions are vital. If you're not moving your target audience to take action or changing their attitude, belief or mindset, why are you doing the presentation in the first place?

Asking these questions shows intent and you will quickly find yourself asking follow up questions: what does the audience believe before I start talking? What do I want them to believe after I finish talking?

And then: what arguments do I use? How do I structure them? What font and colours do I pick? Should the letters be bigger? Can I find a better quality image?

These decisions have a purpose - contribute to the story that will help you change your audience.

Try it and see how much of a difference it makes. Do it a few times and it will become second nature.

I'm excited to say that the second Creating Effective Presentations workshop will be held on October 5th (the first one in May sold out). You can sign up and find more details on this website. It's hands-on and practical as you will be working on an actual presentation. There are only 12 spots to make sure it's high energy and that everyone receives the attention they need to craft a presentation their audience will remember.

*Also applies to Google Slides, Keynote, Prezi or any other software used for presentations


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