Spent the weekend catching up on my reading (things going crazy good at Airborne keeping me over-busy), and gleaned yet another pearl of wisdom from Chip Heath and Dan Heath. As faithful FOPs know, the brothers' now- classic book Made To Stick was one of the elements that helped concretize my theories about the powers of Surprise, which is why I don't miss anything they do...well, professionally, at least.
Their column in this month's Fast Company is ostensibly about improving PowerPoint presentations, but more profoundly touches upon the difference between being telling something or making others want to discover it, a key Pow! factor. To wit:
Great presentations are mysteries, not encyclopedia entries.
The best presenters don't structure their presentations by thinking:
'What's the next point I should make?'
Instead, they decide
'What's the next question I want them to wrestle with?'"
Compare this to just about every corporate PowerPoint presentation you had to suffer through, where the standard operating procedure seems to be: "Here's way too much writing that you will read in 30 seconds and that I will spend the next seven minutes repeating."
Yes, there are killer PowerPoint improvement books like Garr Reynolds' Presentation Zen, but you can still blow it following his minimalism advice if you give away more than you tease.
The Heaths' advice goes way further than what you see on a presentation screen. It's a secret to solidifying business relationships--hell, ALL types of relationships. Use frequently.