I thought I’d follow up on the security presentation I mentioned a week ago when I was home sick. I have to say that by all accounts, our session, Managing and Minimizing Risk, was a great success. We had a packed room, so much so that we had a few people sitting out in the hallway listening.
We received a lot of good feedback afterwords, both on the topic and the presentation itself. I’m a firm believer that presentation plays a huge role, because it won’t matter how good your content is if the crowd is sleeping or bored to death. Overall, I feel this was one of my better performances to date. I know I should have spent more time practicing, but at some level I must like the rush I get from “winging it”.
This was my second presentation using the drop-dead simple PowerPoint style of big white text on a black background (I just found out one name for this technique – the Takahashi Method). The first time I saw someone present like this was Jason Fried’s (of 37signals) The Building of Basecamp session at Web Design World Seattle earlier this summer. If I remember correctly, he has been influenced by information design expert Edward Tufte (see The Cognative Style of PowerPoint). Here are a few slides to give you an idea of what the security PowerPoint looks like:
So, what else has led me to my current presentation philosophy? There are a number of books and sites, including these:
- Really Bad PowerPoint, by Seth Godin ($1.99, or free with the purchase of Free Prize Inside)
- Attention Spam
- Why Business People Speak Like Idiots by Brian Fugere, Chelsea Hardaway, and Jon Warshawsky
- The Cognitive Style of PowerPoint by Edward Tufte
- The Art of the Start, by Guy Kawasaki (see his 10/20/30 rule – it’s great!)
- Recently, Presentation Zen
- Steve Jobs, Apple CEO
- Creating Passionate Users
Finally, a couple of other websites for tips: