August 26, 2015 Anil Saxena

Not All Of Us Can Be Presentation Picassos

Many of us know someone that can put together outstanding presentations in almost no time.  They whip them together like Gordon Ramsey making a delicious meal or Picasso painting a masterpiece. For most of us (at least for me), creating compelling presentations takes some serious thought and lots of preparation.  One of the best tools I’ve found to jumpstart the process and develop convincing content is an app called Haiku Deck.
Haiku Deck can be on the Apple Apps store (sorry Android users, I’m sure they are working on one).  It is an awesome tool that builds presentations though pictures.  The concept is really simple.  Once a theme is picked, simply type in a word or phrase and Haiku Deck will provide a series of pictures that represent it.
• Want to show change – show the metamorphosis of a caterpillar into butterfly
• Want to show adaptability – show a chameleon changing colors
There a many pictures available in the free version and even more in the inexpensive paid version.  It is a powerful tool to develop storyboard for a presentation that filled in with charts or other details as needed.
According to John Medina’s best selling (and overall awesome book) Brain Rules, building a presentation using pictures follows two key rules of the brain:
• People don’t remember boring things
• Vision trumps all other senses

Pictures are quickly “lodged” (not a scientific term) into memory and easily recalled.  Pictures help to link your ideas in the presentation to solutions or concepts that the potential client will remember as yours.  Telling a story with pictures is what the brain wants! Your audience is doing while you are talking anyway. Presenting like this just helps things along.
The quick answer is, don’t worry about them.  More often than not, the potential client isn’t really going to read what you have on the slide.  They are looking to see
• Do you know what you are talking about?
• Are you a good fit culturally?
• Will you make them look good?

If you have to deliver data and figures, make sure you have them.  But in most cases, all those extraneous words on the page will distract from YOU.  That is  the magic and genius of Haiku Deck.  The app doesn’t allow for a lot of text, so you HAVE to know your stuff.  You want the audience to listen to you and not read ahead anyway, right?
Therefore, you will need to voice over details and create a leave behind rich with data.  Make sure that the leave behind has the some of the picture used in the presentation to cement the link.
If you are like me and aren’t a virtuoso of presentations, leverage Haiku Deck to build a compelling story that uses the most powerful sense to lock your ideas into the audience’s memory!
What programs do you use to improve your presentations?  Please let me know!!!

Anil Saxena is the President of Cube 2.14, an organizational development consulting firm that works with clients to increase both customer and employee engagement while decreasing turnover, improving customer retention, and increasing profitability within organizations.

Saxena is a certified High Impact coach and trainer and a Joint Application Design facilitator. He is also certified by both Rush Systems and IBM as a focus group facilitator. He is an inaugural member of Northwestern University’s Learning and Organizational Change program, and he earned his bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from the Illinois Institute of Technology.


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