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Wednesday, May. 21, 2008 at 5:54 pm

How to Cure “Death by PowerPoint”

By Robert Gorell
May 21st, 2008

Brain Rules by John MedinaThe other day, Seth Godin wrote about the new standard for meetings and conferences. He’s absolutely right. Asking people to travel to see a presentation can be dangerous, and the last thing anyone wants to overhear is, “I flew all the way out here for this?”

With those words echoing in our heads, Bryan and I were chatting about this brilliant tutorial post by Garr Reynolds on his Presentation Zen blog, where he shares a presentation for Dr. John Medina’s new book, Brain Rules: 12 Principles for Surviving and Thriving at Work, Home and School.

You can see the presentation here or view it full screen at SlideShare:

I can’t wait to read Dr. Medina’s book, but flipping through Garr’s presentation again got me thinking about Seth’s post, where he insists that conference organizers owe their audiences “surprise, juxtaposition, drama, engagement, souvenirs and just possibly, excitement.” We couldn’t agree more.

But wait… what about our upcoming NYC seminars, just two weeks from now? Are we really promising “surprise, juxtaposition, drama, engagement, souvenirs and just possibly, excitement”? Well, yeah, I guess we are. That’s something to take seriously.

While I can’t promise you that Bryan’s slides are all as pretty to look at as Garr’s, I can promise that our event attendees won’t be keel over from “death by PowerPoint”. That’s the good thing about seminars like these; they’re face-to-face and interactive, and everyone gets to walk away having learned something instantly relevant to their own online strategy. And they get to ask questions. Lots of questions. Besides, how could you be bored in New York when you get to make fun of both of our losing baseball teams choose from 6 gazillion menu items at our 14,000+ restaurants?

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Comments (4)

  1. I’d be interested in an additional viewpoint on one matter. Dr. Medina states that vision trumps all the other senses. Roy Williams (The Wizard of Ads), I believe, would counter with sound being more important. Anyone else want to throw another sense in?

  2. What we SAY (and HOW we say it) is the most important element of a presentation — but it can easily get trampled by a bad visual. How many of us have watched folks reading slides instead of listening to the speaker? That’s why you cannot just write all your bullets on the slide and expect it to be effective. I mean, if it’s all on the slide, who needs you?

  3. I loooove this! I’ve been trying to find something to formalise this stuff for ages and here it is…. and as usual Garr’s done a stunning job of turning it into a presentation.

    Bloody good job he doesn’t work in the UK – I’d be out of work! :)

    Simon

  4. Seths blog talks about “death by PowerPoint” engages people to understand that times are changing through the economy that is very expensive with hih fuel cost, these days and time wasted at airports. This is causing big business to resort to on line conversation in enexpressing “PowerPoint”Through techknology this is achievable finally and is very cost affective for business today He also goes on to say that he hoes industry takes advantage of this more through more networking products. we are all willing to travel but it is becoming more cost effective to audio & video theads conference of the material. seth also says this is becoming a very good interaction through onlin presitations, you can acheive all of your goals and still have discussions online in greater numbers while never leaving your base.No need to hold large expensive geographical changes. just write a blog and you can get the point accross and even better while saveing the company a large expence in doing the same thing and geting better results.

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