Archive for presentations

SlideShare Zeitgeist 2010 – Tips for Powerful Presentations

[tweetmeme]Thanks to SlideShare for its summary of the best presentations of 2010 in “SlideShare Zeitgeist 2010” and its presentation tips for making slide shows more powerful.  Included are SlideShare’s “Best” lists, and stats about usage (note:  Zeitgeist is a German word meaning general outlook).  But what I found most helpful to avoid “death by PowerPoint” are the last three slides:

  • Popular presentations have an average of 63 slides.  Yikes!  I have to believe that’s because they are being read online and not presented in a live format.  Otherwise at about slide 49 I’d be out the door.
  • Popular presentations use few words. The average is 24 words per slide.  I guess this accounts for length of the most popular presentations.  So you should ask yourself — if you’re presenting to a live audience — could I just say this instead of using a slide?
  • Popular presenters do their own thing when it comes to fonts. Presenters use a variety of fonts with Helvetica dominating at 24%. Type faces go back centuries but Helvetica was only invented in 1957 and is a relative newbie as type fonts go.  (This blog is written in Helvetica).  Would welcome your comments about what makes for a powerful presentation.
  • SlideShare Zeitgeist 2010

    View more presentations from Rashmi Sinha.

    Why CEOs Think Differently Than We Do

    [tweetmeme]Marketing and communications executives are being challenged by their CEOs to help chart the future of their organizations. It is their skills as conceptual thinkers that enable these communicators to envision the possibilities for supporting the organization’s goals.  If this is the case, then why do so many chief executives resist the recommendations of the very people they have selected to help drive change throughout the organization?

    Of course, there can be many reasons, from ill-conceived ideas to lack of budget, to the indifference of line managers. But another reason may be the real culprit. While communicators may be conceptual thinkers, their CEOs are more likely ruled by logic and hard facts. They tend to approach problem solving in a linear fashion.

    Sound recommendations may fail because they aren’t organized the way CEOs think. That is why it’s so important to structure recommendations for marketing and communications programs that immediately demonstrate how they will benefit the organization because that’s the chief executive’s bottom line, especially during these tough economic times.

    Here are some tips for delivering a winning presentation to get approval for important recommendations:

    • Opening: outline the broad subject of the presentation
    • Presentation objective: this is the overall statement of how your ideas will benefit the organization. This is where a lot of presentations go wrong because the presenter leads with what he or she wants. Rather, the statement should answer top management’s question: why should I listen to this presentation; what’s in it for the company?
    • Key message points: think of your message as newspaper headlines supporting the benefits outlined in your presentation objective. How will the recommendations increase sales, save money, build a brand?
    • Supporting evidence: use facts, sales projections, statistics, etc., to back up your key messages.
    • Recommendations: summarize your key points and then propose a course of action for approval. Know the decision you want in advance.
    • Discussion: This is the most important part of your presentation. As you lead the discussion, you will build commitment for your recommendations, address any objections, and refine your proposal based on the discussion so that you get a favorable decision.
    • Summary: summarize the agreed-upon desired action. Even if all your recommendations aren’t accepted, don’t leave the meeting without a commitment to some sort of action. For example, if you can’t get your entire program approved, try to come away with a pilot project.

    Remember, your overall goal is to link your programs to the company’s goals. Appreciate your incremental wins and then prepare for your next presentation.