Death by Powerpoint!? A new way of speaking.

by Louise Crooks
Have them on their feet!

Have them on their feet!

Its part of my mission to make sure that you as a business owner are doing everything that you can to maximise your marketing skills, and help you build your relationships with potential clients.  Speaking is one of those tried and tested ways to immediately gain credibility and trust, to create a meaningful connection with your audience, which has a high possibility of leading to a fruitful relationship.  Part of speaking, sometimes includes having a powerpoint presentation to go with it. This is not completely necessary but some organisations or groups you might be speaking to, like you to have a powerpoint presentation to support your presentation.

My friend and colleague Lily Iastridis, who coaches individuals on speaking, has written a great note in her latest newsletter, on what happens when you use Powerpoint a certain way in presentations. It will either kill it, or enhance it! Which one are you doing?

Here are some of the points she makes:

1) Do not use Powerpoint as a prompter. If your slides state exactly what you are going to say, you, the presenter, make yourself irrelevant. Anybody can do your presentation for you that way, and the audience can simply read the slides. If you’re going to go that way, why not simply write up and circulate an interoffice memo?

2) Do not let Powerpoint interfere with your relationship and your impact upon the audience. After all, how much impact would the Gettysburg Address have had, given as a Powerpoint?

3) Do not use Powerpoint as a “data dump.” Too much statistical data is confusing and quickly becomes boring.

If you are guilty of any of the above, don’t be too hard on yourself. Another critic created a Powerpoint on its misuse that at one point even displayed a picture of Bill Gates himself speaking in front of a slide so overcrowded with statistical data on world hunger that the audience could not have possibly absorbed all of the information.

Instead, review your Powerpoint and reorganize it in the following way:

1) Use Powerpoint to help your audience visualize ideas, not to state them. Powerpoint is an excellent tool for imagery. Avoid using text as much as you possibly can.

2) Keep your slides simple and clear. This is actually far more difficult than one may think. If needed, create a separate handout for your audience.

3) Use Powerpoint to emphasize your main points, not to make them all for you. Don’t make yourself interchangeable with your Powerpoint presentation. Your presentation is your opportunity to present yourself as a leader and expert in your subject area. Don’t squander that chance!

Remember, if your equipment fails, you should be able to complete a fantastic presentation without your Powerpoint, no problem. Powerpoint should be a supplemental tool, not one that competes with or diminishes your presence.

If you would like to contact Lily for any other questions on editing a Powerpoint or delivering seminars, workshops and presentations you may contact her
at, or visit our website, to learn more about her products and services.

Lily provides wonderful content and value with the information she shares on speaking. In fact she has a workshop coming up shortly in Manhattan, that you may want to check out!

Coach Louise

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