What is the best, new tool in presentations?
An interesting post at The Harvard Business Review on Presentations discusses other new and exciting tools that may help in effective presentations. Sadly, I think they miss the point completely.
“Guns don’t kill: bulletpoints do” is a tagline I use when discussing presentations. The software in and of itself of course is not the problem; great presenters can engage and communicate with little or no support from the media behind them. However, the vast majority of us are poor presenters and it is my contention that the software, and sadly that means the ubiquitous Powerpoint, makes worse presenters of the majority.
The rationale behind this statement is that whilst the software gives opportunity for interactivity and effective communication, the reality is that the all pervasive use of the software over the last decades has actually changed the way that presenters think and construct their presentations. We have learned to think in powerpoint and audiences expect their information delivered in powerpoint. Consequently those pioneers moving out into the presentation wilderness often use the newly discovered tools in exactly the same way as they used .ppt
What is required to go beyond “Next Slide Please” is to (re-)consider story rather than its illustration. It is not about the software used but about the way the story is to be told.