Use Comparisons

I had an interesting conversation yesterday with one of my clients. Last year the company orgnanised for the first time a 3 day conference on a European level where the country managers and team leaders could explain about their accomplishments of that year and the objectives for the next year. Of course they explained that giving a presentation. However, this year quite some months before the next event, the company asked me to help the speakers prepare their presentations because their first event had been very successful although the presentations could have been a lot better. One of the managers told me yesterday that he had done some research on the effectiveness of the presentations of last year. He asked quite a number of people what they remembered from these presentations and nearly everyone remebered ‘the coffe machine’…Now what is the coffee machine all about you might wonder ? One of the presenters of last year, Andy, was in my workshop. During the exercices I noticed that he alreday had great qualities as a presenter and I very much liked his style. Before the workshop , I had received the PowerPoint presentations they had made last year and of the 20 presentations there was only one that I liked, Andy’s…Why was his presentation so memorable ? Because he had explained a new machine and while preparing his presentation he noticed how much this new machine resembled an espresso machine. You just press the button and the machine does all the rest the result being a nice coffee. This was just so with the new machine. So he explained that talking about an espresso machine. Now this is very important information because it illustrates an important point I want to make how you can make your presentation memorbale : use comparisons. People remember new information much better when you compare it with something they know ! And why was his PowerPoint the only one I liked ? Because he had few slides and the slides he did show were either pictures (now I come to think of it, there was actually a picture of an espresso machine), or very simple word or figure slides. Words in a very big font and only some 2 to 3 figures on a slide, not a whole table…

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