This week and its preceding weekend have been filled with tweaking a workshop I am giving called “The Lecture is Dead. Long Live the Lecture!” in southern New Jersey. In hashing out my ideas and designing the days, I came across some great statements in regards to how we present information in presentation form from some of the “pro-jocks” in the business and from some random places. I thought I take a few moments to share them here:
I learned by watching lots of presentations, and one thing I figured out early on is that most CFO-level speakers — particularly CEOs, particularly male CEOs — really suck as speakers. They’re boring; they’re long; they wander around. I saw speech after speech, and I discovered that if there’s anything worse than a speaker who sucks, it’s a speaker who sucks and you have no idea how much longer he or she is going to suck. That’s a horrible feeling.
To prevent you from getting that feeling, I’ve developed a Top 10 format. All of my speeches are in Top 10 format, because if you think I suck, I at least want you to be able to track my progress through the speech so that you know approximately know how much longer I’m going to suck.
If there’s one thing I really don’t like it’s transitions in Powerpoint. Nothing says “I’m a knob” like some jazzy wipe from one ugly hard to read slide to another. I see it all the time.
The “2009 High School Survey of Student Engagement,” conducted by the Center for Evaluation and Education Policy at Indiana University, reveals that 66 percent of the students surveyed said they are bored on at least a daily basis in school, with 17 percent reporting that they are bored in every class. Two percent of the students said they are never bored in school, raising suspicions that they could be Russian spies. (Kidding about that last part.)
In essence, it’s become a rousing process of finding great methods, ideas, and examples and then eventually letting the groups play with them. Some great slides were created by Monday’s groups; I am anxious to see what Friday’s session produces.