Book Review: How to Give a Great Presentation by Nick Morgan

Thursday, December 1, 2011
posted by Geetesh Bajaj at 4:00 AM IST



There is a new trend with ebooks — they are getting smaller all the time! Typically ebooks were just electronic versions of regular books that had a hundred pages or more and needed more than a day or two to read, especially if you had other full time work to take care of. Now, ebook authors have realized that it’s no longer necessary to take a concept that fits into 16 pages, and extend it to an entire book — so you get ebooks that are direct in their approach, get straight to the point — and you learn something new within an hour! Also the fact that you can start reading the book as soon as you buy it — and then you can act upon what you learned from the book soon after you read it!

How to Give a Great Presentation by Nick MorganNick Morgan‘s new book, How to Give a Great Presentation fits the description in the preceding paragraph. It is compact, and direct in its tone. Nick starts by looking at how typical users assemble rather than create slides — he stresses the importance of a clear point of view about what message the presenter wants to get across to his or her audience. What I liked most about this book is that you can actually read the entire book if you need to create and deliver an important presentation tomorrow — even if it takes an hour to read this book, and even if you have already read it before, the amazing advice in this book may be quickly forgotten unless you read it often! Talking about forgetting, this is what Nick says in the book:

Neurological studies show that we only retain about 7 ideas at a time, and once you tell us the eighth, we forget the first one. Imagine how little we retain of a series of 30 PowerPoint slides with 10 bullets per slide, and lots of sub-bullets.

Here are a few more sentences that I marked in this book:

The reason your sentences should be complete, declarative ones is that they force you to take a stand. Far too often, people headline their PowerPoint slides with titles like “Outlook,” and forget that no one but themselves knows what that outlook is. That makes presentations fuzzy, unclear, and hard to follow. Writing a complete sentence will fix that problem.

Armed with the outline, you’re ready to power up PowerPoint. This step is very simple: one slide per sentence. Put the sentence at the top of the slide, then add a picture (or a graphic) that reflects the emotion, people, places, or actions involved. Real photography, or good stock photography, is always better than clip art, which looks amateurish. Avoid bullet points on your slides – instead, put those in the speaker notes if you don’t want to forget some crucial detail. Keep the slides for pictures and headlines.

This book is available as an Amazon Kindle book, an iTunes iBook, and a Barnes & Noble’s Nook Book — and it costs only $1.99 — it’s worth much more than that!

See Also:

Public Words: Conversation with Nick Morgan

Nick Morgan at the Presentation Summit 2011

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