7+1 myths about presentation

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Our presentations are often created and carried out from a wrong starting point. Several false presuppositions block our way to better, happier and more effective communication with our audiences.

Our presentations are often created and carried out from a wrong starting point. Several false presuppositions block our way to better, happier and more effective communication with our audiences.

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  • 1. 7+1 Myths About Presentation
    what’s wrong with them – and what to do instead
  • 2. 1st Myth

    Presentation is… what I put into the PowerPoint/Keynote

  • 3. 1st Myth

    Presentation is… what I put into the PowerPoint/Keynote

    That would be pretty easy. But also inefficient. If it was true, there would be no difference between a presentation and a newsletter. And we wouldn’t have to bother sitting at meetings.
    A great presentation consists of a passionate and true speaker (who doesn’t have to speak much ), important and interesting information being passed on and, optionally, of some supporting material projected on the wall.
  • 4. 2nd Myth

    I was told: tell them about it, therefore the goal of my presentation is to inform

  • 5. 2nd Myth

    I was told: tell them about it, therefore the goal of my presentation is to inform

    When you give them information, what will they do with it? Use it to laugh at you? Misinterpret? Forget? Ignore? Abuse it? If you do not have a clear and specific vision of what your audience should do, you’re only wasting people’s time.
    If all you need is to cover your back and tick a task labeled “inform”, don’t do presentations – send email. If not, focus on what will the information cause (What if it makes people angry? Should it do something else?)
  • 6. 3rd Myth


    I mustpresent all the information I have
  • 7. 3rd Myth


    I mustpresent all the information I have
    You don’t have to – and frankly, you couldn’t even if you wanted to. What each person wants is a specific bit of information that matters – to them, at the moment, in their situation. Or something that they feel they might use later.
    Present only things that help support your goal and just enough to make your audience do what you need them to do (or at least happy).
  • 8. 4th Myth

    People are interested mainlyin getting all informationthat I have

  • 9. 4th Myth

    People are interested mainlyin getting all informationthat I have

    Do you believe that? Generally, people are interested in having nice relationships, getting more comfort, more respect. Does your presentation offer them a way to one of these things?
    You are probably not presenting the newest coolest gadget, but still try to think: am I really offering something to people? Make sure you’re taking their time for a better reason than just for having an alibi that you did talk to them.
  • 10. 5th Myth

    Other people are interested in the same things that interest me

  • 11. 5th Myth

    Other people are interested in the same things that interest me

    If every programmer in an IT company was interested in quarterly gross revenue more than in the effectiveness of his code, would the firm prosper? If mums were interested in the same things that boys do, would we have happier homes?
    Talk about what matters to the audience and project things that help build appropriate emotions. Put all other information on paper or in handout; those who are interested will find it there.
  • 12. 6th Myth

    They don’t read what I write them… When I read it aloud, they’ll be interested!

  • 13. 6th Myth

    They don’t read what I write them… When I read it aloud, they’ll be interested!

    Why people reject reading something? It’s either because it’s too long, it’s being put in a boring way, they can’t orientate themselves in it or it’s completely out of the scope of their interests.
    Try saying something different from what you’re used to write. Talk about them and their pains and joys. Show them pictures, schemes. Talk passion where others write words and numbers. If you can’t, let the audience go and don’t present at all.
  • 14. 7th Myth

    When projected on the wall, boring things become interesting

  • 15. 7th Myth

    When projected on the wall, boring things become interesting

    If the things are boring in their substance, it’s really hard to turn them into something catchy. Boring stuff stays the same whether you encounter it in your bed or in an elevator.
    Put all possibly boring information on paper or handout; those who are interested will find it there. Talk about what matters and project things that help build appropriate emotions.
  • 16. +1st Myth

    During a presentation, the most important person is me, the presenter

  • 17. +1st Myth

    During a presentation, the most important person is me, the presenter

    Without making the audience listen, the presenter is nothing more than a sound of a distant babbling brook.
    The important thing is whether the presenter is able to 1) think about what matters to the audience,2) say something valuable about it.
  • 18. Don’t trust myths –use common sense!
    http://www.technickakomunikace.cz/blog