Less PowerPoint – more leader. Stop using PowerPoint! It’s that simple.
- It goes without saying that if you distract people whilst you are talking to them, they won’t be able to focus on what you are saying and they certainly won’t find you compelling. That’s exactly what is happening when you put a slide up on a screen or hand over a deck and then talk over it. You become a narrator, not a leader.
- If someone is reading, they can’t look at you or listen to you at the same time. We all know this – so why put word slides on a screen and then speak? Your audience might hear what you are saying, but they are unlikely to be influenced by you, because if they are glued to the screen they won’t see the conviction (or lack of it) in your eyes.
- Having slides on display encourages a speaker to talk more – take the slides away and you will probably say less, increasing the clarity of your message and creating better understanding.
In our work with senior executives, helping them reduce and eventually stop using Powerpoint is a behavioural change which delivers immediate and lasting impact, whether this is more inspired staff, clearer understanding of strategy, or increased investor confidence.
In most cases it does require specialist coaching and the development of much stronger delivery skills. But if you want to create impact as a leader – move from being interesting to compelling – then next time you speak, try getting rid of the slides!