I have been praising Point, Click & Wow! ever since I started reading it. For example, in my tip, “Create a fast-moving presentation,” the topic of the fast-moving presentation was based on part of Chapter 1.
The book focuses on the business presenters who need to create and deliver successful presentations for their work. The subtitle is “The techniques and habits of successful presenters” but it’s more than that. Rather, it’s a blueprint and even a workbook that takes you through the process of developing a successful presentation.
I’ll go out on a limb and say that I think that this is one of the best books I’ve ever read on presenting. Here are my reasons for saying that:
- The book is useful for any business presenter.
- You’ll learn about all aspects of presenting, from researching the audience and creating the content through delivery to different types of audiences.
- The forms and checklists that the author includes are invaluable for making your you get the whole job done correctly. With special permission from the author, I can offer you the Presentation Overview form contained on the book’s CD (PDF format). It’s a great tool for starting your presentation off in the right direction. In my opinion, if every presenter used this form, we’d see a transformation in presenting overnight. Of course, there’s more to it than this; the form is simply a way to start out right. Well begun is half done.
- The stories and examples from the author’s coaching practice are meaningful and inspiring.
Here’s a summary of the chapters:
- Chapter 1 explains how to focus on your key messages. The Presentation Overview form mentioned above is part of this chapter.
- Chapter 2 covers connecting to the audience. The author discusses 7 ways to connect to an audience and then reviews how to connect for specific types of presentations, such as selling, technical, financial, and academic presentations, among others.
- Chapter 3 covers some basic PowerPoint features that can help you create successful presentations. These are tips for avoiding unprofessional-looking mistakes, for saving time, and for engaging the audience. For example, the author covers custom shows, hyperlinks, and useful animation.
- Chapter 4 explains how to create a series of effective slides for a company so that employees don’t have to spend hours creating their own slides.
- Chapter 5 covers principles of effective slides, including the amount of text, appropriate colors, slide organization and layout, titles, images, and more.
- Chapter 6 discusses technology and includes an excellent technology checklist.
- Chapter 7 is all about rehearsing.
- Chapter 8 is called “Demonstrate Executive Presence” and was new material for me. The author explains different types of “presence behaviors” and explains 5 types of decision-making styles, based on The 5 Paths to Persuasion by Gary Williams and Robert Miller. She explains how to craft a presentation for thinkers, charismatics, skeptics, followers, and controllers. Interesting stuff!
If you’re looking for a structured book on successful business presenting, I suggest that you buy this book.