I had a very positive experience recently applying Manager Tool learning to a recent seminar presentation I made at NEOCON East in Baltimore about recent project work and Next Generation Thinking about Workplace Design. I followed Mark's advice from a podcast from maybe two to three years ago to stand at the door and personally introduce myself to everyone entering the room. (There were about 75 ish people). It loosened me up and everyone else as well for my 9am first session start. Doing this helped remind me my presentation wasn't about me but about them and their choice to come see my presentation.

I received very positive feedback afterwards from the session survey forms. Over half of the attendees responded. Does anyone else have positive or negative experiences to share regarding this advice from Mark et al.? Did it help you in your presentation?

Of course, the one thing I didn't do well is I showed way too many images.  I had 40 slides for my hour-long presentation and just barely finished at the end of the hour.  That meant a little over a minute for each slide.

I had some audience questions along the way which was great but I didn't get the chance to have the 5-10 min juicy discussion about workplace design and feedback I so badly wanted to create.

If I could do it over again, I would triple dog dare my self to have 10 slides and really try to directly engage my audience with less image backup.

Architects, like many other business people, like to hide behind images and miss oppourtunities for active dialogue.  No surprise here.  It's easy to follow a power point.  It's hard to speak to people with engagement and extreme focus.

I also used the how to do a great handshake advice, the mingling with group advice...It all helps!

Any feedback?

Thanks Guys for the Podcasts!

asteriskrntt1's picture

Well done Freysm... takes a lot of courage to do the meet and greet.  I am sure you will improve your slide deck over time.  And I am guessing your slides were infinitely more interesting that what I experienced the other day :)

I was at a high-end finance presentation on Monday.  The 2 presenters were at the top of the banking food chain and had just put together an IPO (initial public offering) and were sharing the details of how it all came together. 

The first presenter's mobile microphone did not work and no one heard a word he said.  He walked in front of the screen numerous times and smacked it for impact.  Then walked back across the screen to the podium without talking (not that we could hear him) and resumed his presentation.

The second presenter did 10 slides in 21 minutes.  But it was really 19 slides as on multiple slides, he crammed 3, yes 3, charts onto 3 slides, then 2 on two others.

Not only were they horrible charts with red/green (really bad for most colour blind peeps - about 8% of men are full-on colour blind and 25% more have some limited colour impairments), but they were super small.  Given this was a finance group, it was easily 85% male. 

They were full of data (ok, now i want to talk about the debt/ebitda ratios for the 8 companies we wanted to price the IPO against) and did not lead to any sort of conclusions or thought path.

The last slide was a list of about 12 banks who were involved in the syndication and the list was read to the audience.  No explanation as to how or why each came to be part of this deal or why we should care.  I am just thankful I get to see these from the audience side and hopefully will never do a presentation like this from the lectern side of things. 




r-simmons's picture


Thank you - your advice has proven invaluable (again).

jclishe's picture

40 slides for an hour talk, yikes! I generally shoot for about 15 slides per hour.

I realize this is an old thread, but the recent casts on offsite presentation prep was very informative and helpful. I give a lot of offsite talks, but I'm fortunate in that I work for a Fortune 50 organization and our marketing department handles all of the venue logistics, to the point that we even have dedicated resources who arrive at the hotel a day early to perform all of the room setup. These resources cover specific geographies and the resource that covers the geography that I speak in is fantastic. So I fortunately don't have to deal with much of the headaches that M&M talked about in the cast, but even still there's a lot of great info the series and I highly recommend it for anyone that does offsite talks.

It's kind of funny, unfortunate actually, how universal the issues are when dealing with events and hotels. I was nodding my head up and down thinking "yup, been there" throughout all 3 podcasts.