Wednesday, 5 January 2011

Presenting under duress

I worked with an individual over Christmas who had been told that he must start presenting the companies solution to take the burden off the director. This in itself wasn't an unreasonable request, what was unreasonable was the director expected him to deliver a thirty slide Powerpoint presentation that at best, based on the number or words, could be described as a novel.
As you'd expect, the individual was full of reluctance, anxious and wasn't happy at the prospect of boring his audience to death.
When we put ourselves up to execute a presentation we are putting our reputation and potentially career at stake, so we need to communicate ideas that excite us and give a presentation full of enthusiasm that we fully believe in. In my experience, this can never be done using someone else's slideshow, especially if it dictates the tone of the presentation through masses of text.
Like many students before, my advice has always been to create a presentation you are happy with, yes it may look totally different, but the key theme and message will be the same. Wait! I hear you cry, our company has a standard corporate presentation that must be delivered in a particular format, then change it. Create a corporate presentation that is full of pictures, this will allow the presenter to execute the same showreel, but use their own personal soundtrack, which works far more effectively.