If You Wanna Connect Fuggedabout PowerPoint
by Dana Bristol-Smith

Have you seen yourself lately on video? If you've come to a Speak for Success program, I know that you have.

Videotaping---and most importantly, watching the video, is critical in order to improve your presentation delivery. The impact of seeing yourself doing something that just plain doesn't work---is all that is typically needed to make positive changes.

In a recent program, our video reviews were very revealing. What was striking about these playbacks was that during the first minute of each presentation, the presenter spent, at minimum, 50% of their time disengaged from the audience by turning around and looking behind at the screen on the wall with their PowerPoint.

These presenters were standing at a podium with a monitor screen in front of them---but most of them hardly glanced at it.

In many conference rooms, boardrooms, and training rooms, the screens that our PowerPoint presentations are projected upon are pretty large---often one to two times the height of the presenter. Unfortunately, the large screen pulls our attention away from a speaker---but it shouldn't pull the speaker's attention away from us!

Presenters who engage and connect with their audiences usually don't use PowerPoint. But if they do, they master it so that it doesn't drain away the attention of the audience and energy of the presenter. If you want to know how to do that well, click here.

Could you be so bold as to go without PowerPoint?

Motivational speakers, politicians, ministers, and savvy business leaders use vocal inflection, rate, volume, energy, and physical movement to convey emotion and emphasis. Can you imagine how boring a political speech would be if the speaker used PowerPoint?

Political speeches are all about influencing, motivating, and trying to get people's votes.

Is that very different than trying to sell an idea at your organization?

Do you have to:

  • Get people's buy-in?
  • Address their issues and pain points?
  • Elicit support?
  • Ask others to champion your ideas/proposals?
  • Sing your praises? (Okay, I'm getting carried away).

Maybe there is something good that we can learn from politicians.

Try this: Fuggedabout the PowerPoint when you want to motivate, sell, inspire, and get buy-in from your audience.

We want and need to engage in a human connection and we really don't need technology to do that. Sometimes it just gets in our way!


About the Author
Dana Bristol-Smith is the founder of Speak for Success, an organization that works with companies that want their people to communicate with confidence and credibility. You can email Dana at:dana@speakforsuccess.net