Developing Effective Presentation Slide Decks
If we remain attached to our past, we can’t learn anything new.--Garr Reynolds
a powerful tool for communicating concepts and ideas.
So, what’s up with all the criticism of it these days? Why do we see slide shows titled,Death by PowerPoint? Why do you suppose there’s 5,000 presentationsonSlidesharedevoted to PowerPoint? When’s the last time you saw a PowerPoint presentation that stuck with you --one that made a difference in how you think about or do your work?
Once upon a time
trainers and presenters were excited about and happy with this tool (software) called, PowerPoint.It came with built-in templates for font type and size, structure, color and backgrounds and made the job of preparing a presentation much quicker than preparing overheads. All we had to do was open a template, add our data, pop in afew pieces of clip art and, like magic, done. We could even print the slides as handout too. But over time, the new became status quo.
Then several things changed.
Not so much with the software but with other related capacities that expanded what was possible to accomplish. Storage capabilities increased dramatically. Bandwidth increased. Creative Commonscame along for free images and illustrations. Further, the research on learning, especially virtual learning, got muchbetter and the reality of the power of stories came to the forefront. Together, the learning landscape has shifted. It’stime for us to learn some new ways to communicate with participants better - in ways that engage, touch the emotions,and are memorable.
The problem isn’t actually with PowerPoint
as a software application but more about how we’ve grownaccustomed to using it. We were limited for so long that we fell into a rut. I’m guilty - I confess. I have not only subjected audiences to bullet points and clip art but I’ve also taught others to make this same fatal mistake. But nomore. There are better ways.
A breath of fresh air
While PowerPoint software hasn’t changed all that much, what we’ve learned about learning and the brain haschanged ... a lot. Current thinking is pushing us far beyond our former practices into new ones that facilitatecommunications and learning. More and more web-based learning, training and presentations (webinars, courses) are