The most important thing presenters should learn is that the way we communicate has changed over the last 50 years. Organizations & presenters MUST learn to communicate and live in the 21st Century, not the 20th!
Fallacy 1: A Presentation is the place for a long, detailed, information packed communication.
Wrong!: A presentation is for concepts. A meeting with slides is for details. Each is a different communicative activity with different implicit & explicit rules and expectations.
Fallacy 2: A long presentation means a better presentation.
Wrong!: If you can’t communicate the message in 20 minutes (max) you can’t do in in two hours!
Fallacy 3: Lots of written text on the slides helps the audience.
Wrong!: A presentation is NOT a reading lesson!. If the presentation is mostly text, convert it in to a PDF and send it to the attendees and save everone’s time. People read at their own speed, they listen at the speed of the speaker they are listening to.
Fallacy 4. The audience must verbally participate in the presentation.
Wrong!: A presentation is communication in only ONE direction: from presenter to audience. If it is bi-directional, it is a meeting with slides. Presentations are NOT actively “participative”, the attendees should participate mentally – by thinking: hypothis Formulation & Resolution.
Fallacy 5. Asking questions to the audience stimulates their participation.
Wrong!: Questions to the audience lead to side-tracking which converts the presentation into a series of dialogues between the Presenter & the questioner which bore everyone except the questioner. The only questions asked should be rhetorical: asked and immediately answered by the presenter.
Fallacy 6. The verbal / written language is the most important part of the presentation.
Wrong!: Remember… Body language (Non Verbal communication) carry a great part of the communicative content. Moving around the room, the backward/forward presenter’s dance, etc., provide subconscious information to the audience which influences their decisions about your presentation.
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