From the category archives:

Presentation critiques

How Dan Roam nailed his SXSW presentation

April 14, 2010
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Dan Roam’s presentation was one of the highlights of SXSW 2010 for me. It was an elegant combination of rigorous thinking, conversational delivery and intelligent, integrated visuals. Rigorous thinking Dan Roam’s central message is that we can solve our problems with pictures. He’s shown how to do this in his seminal book Back of the [...]

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A critique of Malcolm Gladwell

December 4, 2008

Garr Reynolds from Presentation Zen has highlighted several presentations from Malcolm Gladwell. Malcolm Gladwell is a master storyteller in his books. He carries that through in his presentations. Watch the video – then read my analysis below for what you can learn from Malcolm Gladwell and his presentation style. What Gladwell did well So what [...]

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Six lessons in public speaking from Obama

November 9, 2008

America has elected the greatest political speaker for a generation. You may think that there’s nothing for you to learn from Barack Obama’s speechmaking skills – that speaking to 200,000 people at Grant Park, Chicago is too far removed from the presentation you might give to your staff, to your management team or to potential [...]

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Will Smith’s keys to a great presentation

August 26, 2008

Leo Babauta from the blog Zen Habits recently posted his Top 5 most inspirational videos on YouTube. I hadn’t come across this remix of a speech by Will Smith (the remix is by TeamJonny5 – I’ve edited it slightly). It’s only 1 min 19 sec so take the time to watch it because in this [...]

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What can you learn about presenting from Seth Godin?

May 24, 2008

To read a Seth Godin book is to have ideas sparked in your head on every page. Can he do the same in a presentation? I’m going to look at a presentation he delivered at TED. Have a watch and then read my analysis for what you can learn about presenting from Seth. My emphasis [...]

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Al Gore uses evidence to make his point

May 7, 2008

Al Gore’s TED talk is chock-full of evidence to make his point. I’m using the word evidence here loosely to include all the techniques he uses. There’s stories, examples, analogies, quotes, metaphors, and statistics. I did an analysis of how much of the body of his talk was composed of evidence. Here are the results: [...]

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Answer your audience’s questions

May 5, 2008

Effective presentations have a structure and flow. An effective way of building the structure of your presentation is to imagine yourself answering the audience’s questions. This is what Al Gore did in his latest TED talk. First you need to craft your Key Message. Then consider what the audience’s questions might be once you’ve stated your [...]

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A Simple and Concrete Key Message

May 3, 2008

An effective way to plan a presentation is to start by crafting the Key Message. The Key Message is the one thing you most want your audience to remember. You could also think of it as the five second version of your presentation. Al Gore’s latest talk at TED provides some great learning for crafting a [...]

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