A funny thing happened last week. I actually suggested to several co-workers that they add PowerPoint slides to their presentations.
As we prepared and rehearsed our presentations for a major meeting, I marveled at the design of each of my colleague’s presentations. And almost every presentation was planned without the use of PowerPoint. The sessions were full of small group conversations, case studies, videos, review games, poster sessions with flipchart and simulations. I had very little to offer in the way of feedback or suggestions for improvement, except… add a few PowerPoint slides.
Sometimes when learners break up into small groups, they don’t hear the instructions initially, they forget the instructions or they didn’t pay attention to the initial instructions. It can be helpful, especially for visual learners, to have instructions written on a PowerPoint slide in order to remind them of what they’re supposed to be doing. Otherwise, there was very little need for PowerPoint slides during this 2 ½ day training session. PowerPoint has become a tool that our organization has proven it can live without.
Of course, PowerPoint is still a powerful presentation tool. Now that we’ve proven we don’t need it, the question now becomes: how can PowerPoint be re-introduced to add value to future presentations? One key answer to this will be to incorporate improved graphic design to our visual aids (no more bullet points, no more standard templates, intentional font choices, etc).
The Train Like A Champion Blog is published Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. If you think someone else might find this interesting, please pass it along. If you don’t want to miss a single, brilliant post, be sure to click “Follow”! And now you can find sporadic, 140-character messages from me on Twitter @flipchartguy.