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Archive for the ‘“circuit rider” scipmark’ Category

I’ve just stumbled across a wonderful example of how tools such as Powerpoint and graphs and charts can be a tool for powerful and highly effective communications. I urge you to watch it through to the end to remind you just what makes a great presentation work – and also because it’s about world poverty and raises all sorts of questions about its causes and effects.

I’m preparing notes for a workshop on presentations, which will combine a session I run on the use of powerpoint with a workshop that someone else delivers that focuses on body language and confidence-building. We’re taking the best bits from each to produce a two-day course for staff and volunteers from community and voluntary organisations in Brighton & Hove.

Whilst Powerpoint may be a staple tool of business there are many people in the voluntary sector who do not use it, and in fact are often anti-Powerpoint. This may be because they don’t have access to the tools, or often because they feel an aversion to it – having suffered too many times at the hands of a poor quality presentation made worse by awful slideshows.

The availability of cheaper laptops and projectors means it is now becoming more common for people to use them – we hire them out at SCIP and have seen a massive change in the numbers being borrowed in the past few years. Today a new laptop plus projector may cost no more than about £700 , and it’s a great tool for community work and outreach.

But, instead of being liberated by the opportunity to prepare and share information in such a flexible way there is still an underlying assumption that Powerpoint = boring, and an antipathy towards its use. Mainly this is because too many people have suffered as people use all the gadgets at their disposal without any consideration about how it helps tell their story. Rather than embrace the technology and use it as a tool it has become someting you have to apologise for.

I think this video shows how we need to look beyond the technology to see that it is the story and the storyteller that matter – but also how they can use the tools available to help you listen, learn and respond. It subtly underlines that you need to be in control of your tools – this is a master craftsman cleverly combining highly technical skills to make an incredibly powerful point.

TED | Talks | Hans Rosling: New insights on poverty and life around the world (video)

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