Yesterday I heard a great story from a manager at the European Commission. He was invited to be one of the speakers at a conference in the South of France. He was originally speaker number10…but the organisation had decided at the last moment to let the mayor speak as well which made him speaker n°11. When it was his turn, obviously, they were way out of time but they still wanted him to do the presentation. It was late, it was sunny, people were hungry… so he decided not to do his prepared presentation. Instead he simply asked whether the audience had any questions they absolutely wanted an answer to. There were quite some questions, he answered them, and that was it. Afterwards he was congratulated for his marvelous presentation and he was referred to as ‘the guy who didn’t present’… and they ALL remembered him!
What is it about consultants and these very detailed PowerPoint presentations? I have seen many presentations by now with data dump but consultants are ‘king of details’… Their answer is that their customers expect that. Now my question is ‘dot they really?’ My advise would be of course to keep the presentation short with simple slides and give the customer lots of time for their questions for which you can use more ‘detailed’ back up slides.