Over time, I’ve become less dependent upon PowerPoint and more dependent upon interactivity, when presenting or facilitating meetings, seminars, workshops or keynotes.
Today, in meeting settings everywhere, people boot up their computers and click through bullet points that (for the most part) bore everyone to tears because of the lack of contextual, interactive discussion in between. Worst of all, in the time that it takes to prepare those presentations, important work doesn’t get done.
I think all of us (at one time or another) have been changed by great presentations. Perhaps it was a TED talk that delivered a message that was unforgettable. Maybe it was a speaker or facilitator, who brought such significant insight that it moved us to immediate action. Maybe it was a professional, who delivered a keynote presentation that caused us to immediately go do something we wouldn’t have ordinarily done on our own.
I think that the PowerPoint to often creates a safe place to hide in plain sight right there in the conference room or behind the podium. Why? Because it doesn’t require the presenter to take the risk of really getting involved with the room.
Patrick Lencioni, author of The Five Dysfunctions of a Team, uses a term regarding leadership that few leaders are willing to actually do. It’s called ‘getting naked’, meaning are you willing to take the risk of being transparent and show vulnerability in order to really connect, understand, support and actually influence significant change.
Isn’t that really the primary objective of any presentation; to bring about some kind of change?
After all, if that objective isn’t achieved, then what’s the point behind the PowerPoint?