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Learn why the best presenter’s don’t need ‘props’

 In Delivery

. . . you don’t need PowerPoint.” (Steve Jobs, as quoted in Walter Isaacson’s article, ‘Jobs well done’, Australian Financial Review, Review Lift-out, 8 June 2012, p. 11).

A few posts back I shared David Rose’s stance on presentations and the use of PowerPoint (http://www.kellyspeech.com.au/2012/06/why-the-heck-are-you-up-there/). Steve Jobs echoes this point with the above quote.

Now just because you don’t need PowerPoint, doesn’t mean you would never use it to better drive home your key message of your presentation. Nonetheless, if you know you subject/topic well, you should be able to lucidly and logically speak your ideas in simple language, without the need of visual aids or props.

Simple language is important. The mark of someone who knows their subject well is that the person can explain the subject simply, and in a variety of ways to suit a particular audience. (Regarding particular audiences, here’s a task you might find enlightening. Find a willing seven year old, and explain what you do in your work, in a simple way, so the child understands it.)

Conversely, the use of acronyms, complex language/sentences, buzz words, management-speak words, is the mark of a person who doesn’t know his/her subject well and needs to ‘hide’ behind these devices.

The ‘how to apply’ for this post: Before your next sales presentation/message delivery, ask yourself (a) How could I improve my understanding of this topic? (b) Then audio-record yourself speaking your opening words (the first 30-60 seconds). (c) Play back the recording and check it for logical, lucid ideas expressed in clear, simple language.

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