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Why, oh, why?

9 May 2014

I think I’ll have a quick rant before I start my weekend.

 

This week, I spent a couple of days at a trade fair meeting people, drumming up business and gathering ideas. I also watched a few presentations.

 

Now starts the rant: I don’t understand why people still think that PowerPoint slides are meant to be filled up with text. These folks are smart professionals (I know, I looked at some of their credentials), yet they used techniques that have never been seen as effective and have been openly ridiculed for a couple of decades.

 

Now, I will admit that, for me, some of these talks were a blessing in disguise, because I could read the slide once it showed up and then I could check my email while the presenter spoke.

 

I get that presenting isn’t easy and many of us have issues with nerves and voice control and body language. But preparing slides that make life hard for the audience takes a blatant disregard for the audience’s needs.

 

End of rant.

 

I did see a couple of talks that were in the right spirit. A highlight was the presentation given by an HR entrepreneur. He presented with so much energy and he spoke with a rhythm that made his message clear even to me, although he presented in Finnish. The messages on his slides were so simple that I didn’t need to analyse them; he did that for me.

 

And what was great to see was that people appreciated his talk. It was one of the best-attended talks of the fair and most people appeared to be engaged.

 

So the fair was quite valuable to me: it introduced me to new people, pointed me towards new ideas, but most importantly, showed me that there’s a lot of work to do out there!

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