See Full Story
Last week, I was at the HP analyst event where DreamWorks CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg got up on stage and gave an example of what every speaker should do -- tell a story. Behind him slides went by, and we even saw a preview of one of the coming movies. Looking back, it was one of the two best presentations of the event. The other, by Chandrakant Patel -- on powering a data center using cow dung -- was actually just as fascinating for much the same reason. Interestingly enough, on the prior day, the speaker with the most stage presence was Cathy Lesjak who, instead of the more normal numbers-oriented talk, wove a compelling story around HP's new strategy.
Remember, to be a great communicator, you've got to reach different kinds of audience members, simultaneously. For me, having a "script" on the screen helps me hear what the speaker is saying, and how the words coming out of his mouth link to the bigger concepts he is conveying (or will soon get to). And if my mind wanders (does that ever happen?), I can see what I missed. In other words, I like the visual roadmap that word charts can provide. Graphics and pictures are nice, too. Others in the audience will certainly have different preferences.