Presenting To Win: The Art of Telling Your Story and Designing Your Slides, 3rd Edition PDF by Jerry Weissman

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Presenting To Win: The Art of Telling Your Story and Designing Your Slides, Third Edition

By Jerry Weissman

Presenting To Win The Art of Telling Your Story and Designing Your Slides, Third Edition

Contents

■ Foreword: Past Is Prologue…………………………………………………………………….. xxii

■ Preface to the Third Edition: The Primacy of the Story………………………. xxvii

■ Introduction: Show and Tell……………………………………………………………………xxxi

The Twofer…………………………………………………………………………………. xxxii

The Primacy of the Story……………………………………………………………… xxxii

Presenter Focus…………………………………………………………………………. xxxiii

Book Conventions……………………………………………………………………….. xxxv

■ Chapter One: Persuasion……………………………………………………………………………..1

Selling…………………………………………………………………………………………….. 1

The Five Cardinal Sins of Stories………………………………………………………. 3

Point A to Point Bsm…………………………………………………………………………. 5

■ Chapter Two: The Power of “You”……………………………………………………………….9

Point of View…………………………………………………………………………………… 9

Audience Advocacy………………………………………………………………………… 10

What’s In It For You……………………………………………………………………….. 11

Quantify the “You”…………………………………………………………………………. 16

The “You” Rule………………………………………………………………………………. 19

■ Chapter Three: The Art of Telling Your Story………………………………………….. 21

Creativity………………………………………………………………………………………. 21

Thinking, Fast and Slow…………………………………………………………………. 22

FrameForm: Establish the Context…………………………………………………. 25

Brainstorming: Capture Your Ideas…………………………………………………. 27

Distillation: Define Your Key Ideas…………………………………………………. 31

■ Chapter Four: The Story Arc……………………………………………………………………. 37

A Legacy of Sequence…………………………………………………………………….. 37

Inductive Logic: The Why?/Why Not? Rationale……………………………… 40

Inductive and Deductive Logic……………………………………………………….. 46

■ Chapter Five: The 12 Flow Structures…………………………………………………….. 47

Logic…………………………………………………………………………………………….. 47

Deductive Logic: The 12 Flow Structures………………………………………… 48

Choosing a Flow Structure……………………………………………………………… 70

■ Chapter Six: No Second Chance …for a First Impression……………………….. 73

First Impressions Last……………………………………………………………………. 74

Seven Opening Gambits…………………………………………………………………. 74

Beyond the Opening Gambit………………………………………………………….. 88

Opening Gambit Summary……………………………………………………………… 94

■ Chapter Seven: Beginning, Middle, and End………………………………………….. 95

The Same Old Story……………………………………………………………………….. 95

Tell ’em What You’re Gonna Tell ’em………………………………………………. 97

Tell ’em……………………………………………………………………………………….. 102

Tell ’em What You’ve Told ’em………………………………………………………. 103

Verbalization………………………………………………………………………………… 104

Timing…………………………………………………………………………………………. 107

Spaced Learning………………………………………………………………………….. 107

■ Chapter Eight: Finishing Touches: Internal Linkages……………………………109

Bricks and Mortar………………………………………………………………………… 109

Internal Linkages…………………………………………………………………………. 110

■ Chapter Nine: Finishing Touches: External Linkages……………………………. 119

The Power of Customization…………………………………………………………. 119

The Illusion of the First Time……………………………………………………….. 120

External Linkages………………………………………………………………………… 122

Customization in Action……………………………………………………………….. 125

Preparing for Customization…………………………………………………………. 126

Language…………………………………………………………………………………….. 128

The Ten Steps of Story Development…………………………………………….. 132

The Four Key Questions………………………………………………………………. 133

■ Chapter Ten: Design Your Slides as a Science……………………………………….137

Seeing Is Believing……………………………………………………………………….. 137

The Twofer Redux………………………………………………………………………… 138

The True Role of Slides………………………………………………………………… 142

The Presenter Focus Model………………………………………………………….. 143

Less Is More………………………………………………………………………………… 144

Nurture and Nature……………………………………………………………………… 146

Minimize Eye Sweeps…………………………………………………………………… 151

The Suasive Meta Design Techniques……………………………………………. 152

Graphic Design Elements…………………………………………………………….. 154

■ Chapter Eleven: Design Your Text as Headlines…………………………………….157

Headlines…………………………………………………………………………………….. 157

Bullets Versus Sentences………………………………………………………………. 161

Text Problems and Solutions…………………………………………………………. 163

Visual Style………………………………………………………………………………….. 174

■ Chapter Twelve: Design Your Numbers as Visuals…………………………………179

The Vital Importance of Numbers…………………………………………………. 179

The Quest for Imagery…………………………………………………………………. 180

Design Techniques for Numbers…………………………………………………… 181

The Left-to-Right Dynamic…………………………………………………………… 189

■ Chapter Thirteen: Visual Storytelling…………………………………………………….193

Show Versus Tell………………………………………………………………………….. 193

Continuity……………………………………………………………………………………. 194

The Storyboard Development Process…………………………………………… 196

■ Chapter Fourteen: Five Graphic Continuity Techniques………………………..205

The Primacy of Pictures………………………………………………………………… 205

Five Graphic Continuity Techniques……………………………………………… 207

Presenter Focus Revisited…………………………………………………………….. 219

■ Chapter Fifteen: Animate Your Graphics……………………………………………….221

Pictures in Motion………………………………………………………………………… 221

Cinema Techniques……………………………………………………………………… 222

Slideshow Animation……………………………………………………………………. 222

Animation and Audience Advocacy………………………………………………… 223

Nurture and Nature in Animation …………………………………………………. 225

Animation: Metaview……………………………………………………………………. 226

Animation: Nuts and Bolts…………………………………………………………….. 227

Animation and the Presenter…………………………………………………………. 231

■ Chapter Sixteen: The Virtual Presentation…………………………………………….233

“Now Joining the Meeting…”……………………………………………………….. 233

Seven Challenges…………………………………………………………………………. 234

■ Coda: Ending with the Beginning………………………………………………………….253

■ Endnotes………………………………………………………………………………………………….259

■ Appendix A: Video Links………………………………………………………………………… 271

■ Acknowledgments ………………………………………………………………………………….273

■ About the Author……………………………………………………………………………………275

■ Index………………………………………………………………………………………………………..277

Preface to the Third Edition

The Primacy of the Story

Case Studies: Vani Kola, Kalaari Capital • Don Valentine, Sequoia Capital It’s still the same old story.1

As Time Goes By Herman Hupfeld

A Trip to India

In the more than three decades since coaching the Cisco IPO roadshow in Silicon Valley, I’ve had the opportunity to deliver those same services in other similarly named technology centers around the United States—New York’s Silicon Alley, Dallas’ Silicon Prairie, Seattle’s Silicon Forest, Salt Lake City’s Silicon Slopes—and in other centers around the world—London’s Silicon Mall, Paris’ Silicon Sentier, Israel’s Silicon Wadi. In each of those hot spots, I learned something new about my own techniques, but in Bangalore’s Silicon Plateau, I learned something old.

The first time I arrived in Bangalore in January 2015 was quite an auspicious occasion: India’s Republic Day, the anniversary celebration of the Indian Constitution. Everywhere in the city, flagpoles, lampposts, antenna towers, suspension cables, windows, and entire buildings were festooned with flags, bunting, streamers, and banners in India’s bold national colors: red, white, and green. Adding to the kaleidoscopic decor—and excitement—were large posters welcoming President Barack Obama, who had arrived that same day to participate in the festivities. To add to all the celebrations, when I checked in to my hotel, a traditional Indian wedding was in full swing, with a roiling sea of people dressed in riotously colorful saris and dhotis, punctuated by dozens of bright pink turbans bobbing up and down among the joyful celebrants.

The next day, when I began the program for my client, there was no letdown in the city’s pulsating energy, or in any of the days after that. Bangalore bustles and buzzes with the relentless vitality of people in constant motion (except for the traffic), all propelled by the booming high-technology industry. Everyone knows everyone, and everyone is busy doing business with everyone else. One of the most active members of this vibrant community is Vani Kola, a VC whose firm, Kalaari Capital, focuses on early-stage technology companies. I had met Vani many years earlier, in Silicon Valley, when she was the CEO of Nth Orbit, her own startup company. Now living in Bangalore, Vani had learned, through the hyperconnected grapevine, that I was in town and called to invite me to an industry event she was giving for a large group of CEOs from Kalaari’s portfolio companies at a hotel in the Whitefield area of the city. Never shy, Vani asked me to deliver some after-dinner remarks about presentation skills. I obliged with a brief presentation and then opened the floor to questions.

The very first one came from a serious-looking young entrepreneur who asked, “What changes have you seen in presentations over your years in business, and what changes have you had to make in your process?” At first, I was stumped. Over my many years, I’d been asked many questions, all of them pragmatic, never theoretical; all of them about the presenter, none about me: “How can I control my nerves?” “What do I do with my hands?” “How can I get my message across?” “How do I simplify my slides?” “How can I make my story more concise?” “How do I answer tough questions?”

My mind began racing through all the latest developments in presentation technology—virtual meetings, video teleconferencing, cloud collaboration, arena projectors, over-the-ear wireless microphones—but it didn’t stop. My thoughts kept racing, faster and faster, further back, past remote controllers and embedded videos, past the dinosaurs of 35 mm slides and the carcasses of overhead projectors and transparencies, and even further back, until it stopped at the beginning: Aristotle.

“It’s still the same old story…” I replied, appropriating the lyric from the famous song in the classic film Casablanca, “…it’s all about how you tell your story.”

The serious young entrepreneur smiled. “It’s all about persuasion,” I continued. “To produce results, to convince your audiences to do what you want them to do: to finance your company, buy your stock or your product or your service, form a partnership—or to donate to your not-for-profit cause. It’s not about your slide deck, or your body language and voice, or fancy video and audio. All of that is empty sound and fury if your story doesn’t work. And the way to create a persuasive story goes back to Aristotle.”

The Perpetual Source

Aristotle was required reading in the studies for my Master of Arts degree at Stanford University, where I had learned about Exordium, Narratio, Peroratio, Ethos, Pathos, Logos, and Teleology. But when I left Stanford to work in the television industry, including a decade at CBS in New York, Aristotle went onto the back burner. Years later, he came rushing back to front and center. During that pivotal lunch with Don Valentine, he told me that the challenge Cisco had of explaining its complex technology business to investors was not limited to high-tech companies. He concluded, “The problem is that nobody knows how to tell a story. And the bigger problem is that nobody knows that they don’t know how to tell a story!”

As I began helping craft Cisco’s story and the stories of other companies in Silicon Valley, I soon realized that Aristotle’s principles had been operating in the back of my mind all the while. They had simply morphed into different terminologies and new processes to arrive at those same basic principles—the same principles that fueled Abraham Lincoln’s towering rhetoric, Sir Winston Churchill’s inspiring orations, Franklin Roosevelt’s assuring fireside chats, and the Reverend Martin Luther King’s rousing speeches. The morphing continued as I worked with more and more companies, until they formed the methodology of my coaching programs—and then this book, first published in 2003, a second edition in 2009, and now this edition.

The Third Edition

The First Commandment of writing is rewriting. This new edition is the product of lessons learned from the thousands of presentations I’ve coached in the dozen years since the second edition, as well as the numerous new case studies I’ve compiled along the way. As a result, I’ve streamlined some steps of the story development processes and expanded some of the others. What has not changed are the original techniques, all of them based on those fundamental Aristotelian principles. I have also replaced the political examples in the first and second editions with new case studies from the business world and beyond. After all, I wrote this book for the road warriors who must deliver pitches that persuade, as well as for anyone who has to stand up and speak. Readers of the earlier editions will note that I have expanded the subtitle from The Art of Telling Your Story to The Art of Telling Your Story and Designing Your Slides. Although slide design constituted a third of the content in each of those earlier editions, I did not include it on their covers—intentionally— because of my persistent focus on the story. However, the equal persistence of the slide “deck” as an irreplaceable component of business has prompted me to add slide design to the subtitle and to update the original chapters. What remains unchanged are the same fundamental design principles based on the science of human perception: how eyes and brains process images. I’ll also provide more depth from my experience at CBS, where I worked in high tech control rooms equipped with vast color palettes, chroma key, electronic character generators, and computer-driven, on-screen animation. Most of these capabilities are now readily available in consumer software programs, but as anyone who has seen a recent business presentation can attest, most presenters apply these powerful functions with all the subtlety of an Instagram or TikTok video. Here, too, I’ll provide you with a simple set of principles that informed how we deployed all those sophisticated electronic capabilities at CBS: the cinematic fundamentals of composition, montage, and movement.

To illustrate all these design considerations, you’ll find new examples of my principles in action with some of my clients’ slides. You’ll also find updated best practices about slide animation in the current versions of presentation software from Microsoft PowerPoint, Apple Keynote, and Google Slides; and about the latest in virtual presentation platforms from Zoom, Cisco, Microsoft, RingCentral, and Google.

While all these design techniques are important, your slides exist to only support you and your narrative. If you take only one message away from this book, it is the primacy of the story. As I responded to the young entrepreneur in Bangalore: “It’s still the same old story.”

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