Boondoggle


Friday December 22

Making better Powerpoints in 2007

ReallybadpowerpointDeveloping strategies and making recommendations is an important part of a strategic planner's job at an agency like i-merge. And like everybody else, Powerpoint has become our default tool to make our point. Sometimes we present in person, sometimes we send the presentation by mail, but Powerpoint is always the constituent part. Powerpoint however remains controversial, one of its main critics is Edward Tufte who has dedicated an important part of his professional life convincing people why Powerpoint is Evil. A more pragmatic critic of Powerpoint is Garr Reynolds who has a superb blog called Presentation Zen, dedicated to issues related to professional presentation design. More on his blog later on.

With the advent of Slideshare, dubbed as the YouTube for Presentations, Powerpoint-files have become even more ubiquitous. If you take a quick glance at the most popular "presentations", you'll see christmas cards, holiday pictures, and jokes along with recommendations and business presentations. All of them can be viewed, shared or annotated. Slideshare however, aggravates the inherent flaws of Powerpoint and the way it is used. Read Garr Reynolds extensive post on how Slideshare encourages the slideumentation of presentations.

The trouble is that for us (and undoubtfully also for a lot of you), slideuments have become the default way to communicate with clients and agencies. Slideuments are a compromise because we're afraid that state of the art slides (consisting of full size pictures and no more than 5 words per slide) or a well written document (with fully detailed text) won't communicate our point. The interesting bit of Reynold's Slideshare post however is where he proposes several ways out of this dilemma. Let's take his advice as an inspiration to improve the persuasive power of our Powerpoints after we've left the presentation room.

Comments

I suppose you know Seth Godin's view on powerpoint (since you use the really bad powerpoint logo).
In any case, a very interesting read: http://www.sethgodin.com/freeprize/reallybad-1.pdf

Posted by Steven Verbruggen 23 Dec 2006 14:54:47

Allemaal goed en wel. PPT's bestaan er in even veel varianten als dat er mensen bestaan. Maar let's be honest : als 't goed gedaan is, kan het soms héél goed zijn. Ik zag niet zo lang geleden Al Gore's film "An Inconvenient Truth". Indrukwekkend. En dan heb ik het eigenlijk nog niet eens over de inhoud (die uiteraard buitengewoon sterk is) - maar over de vorm. Deze film zou in alle bureau's gebruikt moeten worden als trainingmateriaal. De opbouw, chronologie, vormgeving, woorden en beelden, de mix van humor en ernst, ... le tout, quoi : wreed goed !

Posted by Walter 23 Dec 2006 20:26:32

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