Delivering better presentations


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This presentation (that should be viewed in notes view) was delivered in 2010 by Professor Les Johnson, Head of the Business School at the University of Greenwich, as part of the Greenwich Opportunities in Learning and Development (GOLD) CPD programme. It complements the current delivery of workshops on enhancing presentations.

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  • Before you finalize the documentation, rehearse! Rehearsal gives you a good idea of how long the presentation takes from beginning to end and from preview to end. To give a performance, you may have to cut the content down and perhaps even think through the narrative again. A performance should take longer than it does to read your slides. It should certainly take longer than flipping through and skim reading them. Normally, you should leave some time for questions.Speak out aloud without skipping, running over the words, or mumbling what you intend to say to your audience. This is what rehearsal means. You do not get actors saying "and here I will give a speech about Julius Caesar's Last Will and Testament". No, they say out loud: "I come not to praise Caesar but to bury him ....“ Any other form of “rehearsal” is unproductive The aim of a rehearsal is embodiment ( All other forms of rehearsal are forms of distancing or avoidance. When you can advocate for the audience you can focus on benefits, rather than features. Habitually ask yourself on behalf of the audience: What’s in it for me? It’s a good idea to answer audience questions in your presentation. This is important because <statement of benefit>. What does this mean for you? Why am I telling you this? Who cares? So what? And? (All asked rhetorically and answered.) In rehearsal, when your colleagues spot a feature in your draft presentation without a link to a benefit ask them to ask you one of these question. Brief them: Every element of your presentation must be linked to a benefit.By talking your way through the entire presentation, making the key points and the internal connections, you will come to perfect your story and its embodiment. Without embodiment your presentation will be less persuasive. You will feel vaguely false and drop the story in favour of content (where you will feel safe). The most important aspect of rehearsal is that it extends your comfort level. When you rehearse you should not try to be a good presenter: you should try to be a real presenter. A little practice each time you go out will pay great dividends.
  • Delivering better presentations

    1. 1. Better presentationsLes Johnson
    2. 2. How to give a bad presentation  Have no clear point  Do not identify benefits  Have no clear flow  Make the text too detailed  Have too many slides  Run over time, take too long
    3. 3. Plan your story  Framing Audience and Objective Content and Flow  Outlining Opening gambit Scaffold and Summary
    4. 4. Preview of this presentation Story Planning  Framing  Outlining Story Telling  Visual communication  Documentation
    5. 5. PreviewStory Planning Framing OutliningStory Telling Visual communication Documentation
    6. 6. The art of persuasion: advocacy  Carry them by their handles  Pathos: Getting into the audience‟s mind  Translate features into benefits  “What‟s in it for me?”  Your presentation their needs  Don‟t rely on them making inferences
    7. 7. Know your audience The objective (to understand, believe, behave) Audience knowledge level/s Audience‟s wants/needs (benefits) Relevant external factors When, where, what questions allowed?
    8. 8. Brainstorm  Brainstorm, use a technology, one of: Different coloured Post-It notes Whiteboards, coloured pens Metal boards and magnetic „Hexies‟ Software products  Expand then cluster
    9. 9. Decide on a sequence that flows Some models:  Opportunity – leverage  Features – benefits  Case study  Rhetorical question …  Spatial metaphor (e.g. pyramid)
    10. 10. Summary linked to objective
    11. 11. PreviewStory Planning Framing OutliningStory Telling Visual communication Rehearsal and Documentation
    12. 12. Find an Opening Gambit “How do you paint a picture of infinity? How do you dance about death? How do you draw a diagram explaining entropy?” To seize attention To ease you in To launch your presentation
    13. 13. Link to the objective  The Unique Selling Point What you (or your unit) does Couple of sentences only  Validation [optional] A significant achievement An impressive endorsement  Call for action I know you will want to sign up Clear explicit
    14. 14. Scaffold Use an outliner ? First level = title of slide Second level = bullets points Third level = sub bullets
    15. 15. Preview Tell them what‟s coming As if only one slide available Why not enlist the flow model? Link to objective Comes after opening gambit Say how long you will speak
    16. 16. PreviewStory Planning Framing ScaffoldingStory Telling Visual communication Documentation
    17. 17. A key concept Slides are not documents Do not send slides in advance If needed, send executive summary before Do not give slides as a handout A presentation serves only one purpose Notes Page View is a document
    18. 18. Psychology of perception  Everything is „read‟  Text: left to right, top to bottom  Graphs: left to right, bottom to top  Design for minimum eye sweeps  Less is more
    19. 19. Design elements Everything is read Text: left to right, top to bottom Graphs: left to right, bottom to top Design for minimum eye sweeps Less is more100_75 _50 _25 _
    20. 20. Text graphics Minimize eye sweeps 6 lines, each 6 words Only two levels Large font: 24 point Bullets are headlines not sentences Exception: direct quote
    21. 21. Tables Technological convergence: Communications „phone Internet Mobile TV Music GPS Tickets othersShopCallWebMobile
    22. 22. Numeric graphics90 - 90 80 7050 - 60 50 East 40 West 30 North20 - 20 10 0 1 2 3 4 1st Qtr 2nd Qtr 3rd Qtr 4th Qtr
    23. 23. Pictorial graphics  Pictures are memorable  Don‟t decorate  Create an individual style  Avoid text on images  Avoid overlapping images  Show what you mean
    24. 24. Navigational aids  Pictorial graphics can aid navigation  Design your slides to connect  Bumpers / Progressive agenda  Flow model  Indexing  Animations to conceal/reveal
    25. 25. Slime mould Fruiting body Culmination Vegetative Slug Aggregation Life Cycle Mound Streaming
    26. 26. The storyboard view  20 slides a view (or outline)  Look for groups  Do they reflect your flow structure?  Shift around as needed  Edit to show connections
    27. 27. Post view Recycle your preview slide Link to objective
    28. 28. PreviewStory Planning Framing ScaffoldingStory Telling Visual communication Rehearsal and Documentation
    29. 29. Rehearse !
    30. 30. Send To WordSend to a table in Word Edit in Word for Post Presentation Handouts
    31. 31. Story Planning Framing OutliningStory Telling Visual communication Documentation
    32. 32. Appendix
    33. 33. Acknowledgements You are free to use this template for your personal and work related presentations Don’t  Make this template available on a website for download. This includes file sharing networks like Slideshare, Myspace, Facebook, bit torrent etc  Pass off any of Presentation Helper‟s art work as your own workYou can find this free template and many moreon the Presentation Helper
    34. 34. Example of a table Title Title Data DataNote: PowerPoint does not allow youto have nice default tables - but youcan cut and paste this one