I’ve done a number of presentations this year and I’m asked the same question: “Will you have a PowerPoint to present?” My answer is usually “yes.” But, it was a discussion with my wife about a PowerPoint presentation that really got me thinking.
She asked after my most recent talk, “What if you DID NOT have one?” I shuddered and thought, “I can’t just NOT have one. What would I refer to?” But, she made a great point: Do we really need to use PowerPoint during a talk and is it always effective? So, I was officially conflicted.
I decided to reach out to trusted colleague Deirdre Breakenridge; she’s done a few presentations (understatement). I wanted to get her opinion on which way to go. Deirdre stressed the importance of knowing the audience and to have the resources prepared that will get their attention.
I think Deirdre’s points are very valid, especially when it comes to understanding your audience. One of the things I’ve done is prior to any talk is to chat with the head of the group. What are the people like? What information are you looking to learn more about? Is it a big room or more intimate setting? All these things are important.
Let me know your thoughts on PowerPoint and how you use it or don’t.