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It’s You or The PowerPoint


By Tom Nixon

Recently I got the chance to see a video of Elaine, the vice-president of the company I was beginning to work with, present to a room of prospective clients. Slide after slide went by, each filled with 5-10 bullets. Elaine read the full text on every one to her audience. I am sure those possible clients sitting in that room were neither impressed with Elaine nor with her message about her company.

Too much (bad) PowerPoint — not enough Elaine.

It is easy to create a mediocre presentation in PowerPoint. Simply take everything you know, dump it into dozens of multi-bulleted slides and you are ready. No presentation skills necessary. Just read to the audience from one slide to the next. But the focus will not be on you and that is a problem.

You should be the star of your presentation. The audience wants to hear your unique perspective. Instead they are experiencing a distilled, text-heavy, bullet point version of you. Not a good substitute.

The typical PowerPoint deck grabs maybe 70%-80% of the audience’s attention leaving just 20%-30% of the focus for you. Don’t let PowerPoint steal your spotlight. Use slides to assist you as explanations or backgrounds or embellishments. Don’t give away your power.

As far as the audience is concerned it is you or the PowerPoint. Make it you.

Tom Nixon has over 3 decades of experience assisting clients with meaningful business communications. Contact Tom to see how he can work with your business leaders and subject matter experts to create stunning visual presentations (PowerPoint, Keynote, etc.) and enhance their on-stage delivery.