p cubed value of a presentation

Your presentation is the product of three component parts; the story (p1), the supportive media (p2) and the delivery (p3). The product of these three parts gives us the value of your presentation (p cubed). Relating this concept was the topic of my very first blog post in March 2013. It bears revisiting.

“Thank you for your excellent presentation!” We would all love to hear that as we step from the stage but what does it take to achieve this? It is not about flashy slideware, it is not simply about a list of facts culled from a textbook nor is it about just making the audience laugh. A great presentation is made up of three component parts and its overall greatness depends on each being of significant value. No one part carries the day.

If we consider the story, say Romeo and Juliet, that is an excellent p1. The set of the Royal Shakespeare Company at Stratford with the best props and costumes and lighting is p2. And the delivery by the Company of the RSC with passion and timing is p3. Together these make a great presentation, p cubed.

If the same play on the same set is delivered by a bunch of 11 years olds, missing their cues, falling over their costumes and forgetting their lines the p cubed value is much poorer. Except if you are their parents. The p cubed value of your presentation is not what you think it is but how your audience perceives it.

If you have the best list of facts and put them on your slides to read them out and your audience is bored and remembers none of it; then your presentation fails, no matter how much effort you put in to preparation and practise and delivery. If you have a simple story, only one picture and shake as you speak but do so from real emotion but your audience are moved and change their world because of this, then you have made a great presentation. The value of your presentation is what the audience thinks, not you.

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