Wednesday, May 03, 2006

When PowerPoint is a Life and Death matter

There was a Fox New story today that relates the thoughts of a US soldier serving in Iraq. I thought this paragraph he wrote was particularly interesting: "Approximately three days ago, I put together a PowerPoint briefing for my commander. It had the right info, but was not displayed in the proper manner. It’s a lesson I have learned on this staff, and over the last six years in general: How you present information is often just as important as the information you present. When it comes to this job, if your audience, be it your boss or soldiers under you, don’t understand the information you are trying to send across, they might make a decision based on the information they thought they heard, and it can cost lives." (full story at,2933,194135,00.html) Now your presentations may not cost people their lives if done poorly, but do you know the real cost of poor presentations? I have an article that will help you calculate the cost of time wasted due to poor presentations at your workplace (see it at I challenge you to do the calculation and not be shocked. The toughest thing I have to do is to convince senior managers and executives that the poor presentations their people deliver cost a lot. I'll keep plugging away at it, help me if you can.


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