What gets senior execs riled up

 In Mindset

“Few things seem to get CEOs riled up more than lengthy PowerPoint presentations. It’s not the software they dislike: that’s just a tool. 


What irks them is the unfocused thinking that leads to overlong slide presentations.

There is wide agreement it’s a problem: “death by PowerPoint” has become a cliché.”

The above quote is listed under the heading of ‘A simple mindset’ – one of five qualities that Adam Bryant maintains the best CEOs share, in his article Distilling the Wisdom of CEOs.

The other four qualities are: ‘Passionate Curiosity’, ‘Battle-Hardened Confidence’, ‘Team Smarts’ and ‘Fearlessness’ (The article was adapted from Bryant’s book, The Corner Office: Indispensable and Unexpected Lessons from CEOs on How to Lead and Succeed, Times Books). Here is the link to the article:


The phrase “unfocused thinking’ resonates with me. Many business people don’t think. They don’t think prior to a business pitch or before a boardroom presentation – about what is the key message(s) they want the audience/person to retain and/or act upon.

Of course, they also have to deliver the message with conviction, in a simple way at the start of the presentation. If they did think – they’d cut down, and in some cases not need PowerPoint slides when they present.

Your ‘CALL to action/ HOW to apply’ for this post: Read Bryant’s article and use it as preparation material before your next presentation, meeting or interaction.

Check out this post on how to use a bedtime story in a presentation


p.s: This month I’ll be presenting at a roadshow around Australia, run by an major bank at their Centre of Excellence day for their personal lenders. My presentation’s title is: OWN the room. Listen when your customer speaks – Speak and present so you customer listens.

Please contact me if you’d like to know how this presentation could be tailored for your team members.







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