Last week, we asked: What’s the biggest mistake you see people make when they’re giving a formal presentation?
- Too much content, not enough time: 24.69%
- Too focused on the slides versus the desired meeting outcome: 35.69%
- Poor stage presence: 7.6%
- Not reading the audience well: 7.33%
- Not having a clear and compelling story they’re telling: 24.69%
PowerPoint is evil. Well, the program itself isn’t evil — just the way we use it and rely too much on it is. Too much focus on too many slides and failing to have a clear and compelling story is a recipe for disaster. It’s easy to fixate on the presentation because it’s something tangible that we can manipulate. We seem to feel that if we include more content, we’ll be more compelling. Nothing could be farther from the truth. Focus on having a clear message, clean visuals and remember you’re there to get to an outcome — a “yes” from your stakeholders. If you don’t want your presentation to be a disaster, be sure to remember the purpose of the meeting in the first place and avoid the big, common presentation mistakes at all costs.
Mike Figliuolo is managing director of thoughtLEADERS and author of “One Piece of Paper: The Simple Approach to Powerful, Personal Leadership.”