While most of the world is spending the beginning of 2014 obsessed with slimming down after Christmas excess, here at Eyeful we’re excited about expanding.
Our head office team in Desford is looking for two people to join our eclectic and occasionally eccentric team as we enter one of the most exciting phases of business growth so far.
Our HQ team consists of a delightful bunch of creatives who give their very best to every project and form the hub of a worldwide team that delivers fantastic presentations and outstanding customer service.
We are currently looking to recruit a PowerPoint Presentation Designer and a New Business Generator to join the team and full details of both vacancies can be found here.
So, if you think you’ve got what it takes to be part of a rapidly growing, world leading, specialist presentation team – we want to hear from you.
Regular readers will know how we love to wrap serious messages in seasonal frivolity.
So without further ado, here’s a Halloween offering about one of the scariest (and least effective) of presentation shockers….Presentationstein
Turn the sound up, sit back and prepare to be horrified at what could well be happening to your presentation…
P.S. If the whole thing looks spookily familiar, simply breathe in through the nose and out through the mouth thinking happy thoughts until the panic dies down…..then get in touch and we’ll help you lay the monster to rest.
Here at Eyeful we love to push the boundaries of PowerPoint because, in the right hands, it can create some truly amazing presentation visuals.
Whilst much of the world is happy to blame PowerPoint for poor presentations we believe that’s akin to blaming cars for speeding. The brilliance (or otherwise) of a presentation is not about PowerPoint (or Keynote, or Prezi, or the infamous napkin) it’s about getting the best from whatever tool you’re using. And, if we may say so ourselves, when it comes to squeezing every ounce of brilliance from the seemingly mundane, we’re just the people for the job.
Here’s an example of what happens when we give one of our PowerPoint aficionados the seed of an idea and the opportunity just to have fun.
No story, no compelling message and no structure, just the chance to make PowerPoint work that little bit harder as well as play around with some video clips of cute cats. Happy days.
This week Disney has been trialling its ‘interactive cinema experience’.
For those of you not up to speed, the idea is that film goers take their iPad or PC into the cinema (or the front room) and using the Disney Second Screen app they can enhance their cinematic experience.
The app can best be described as live time DVD extras, each movie has an interactive reel full of behind the scenes info, games and trivia, which runs concurrently with the film.
Apparently we’re all going to love trying to concentrate on two things at once.
Without opening the whole ‘multi-tasking’ debate I’m a little sceptical that anyone (especially children who are the initial target audience) can successfully achieve this. And on a side note it would also be sad to see the last ‘mobile free’ bastion disappear, ‘sorry I was in the cinema’ is practically the only viable excuse left for being incommunicado in a modern, tech hungry, world.
We all know that a lot of the tech advances that start as entertainment filter through to business users and maybe this is one that will actually work better for business than it does for kids.
Recently John McCain was caught playing poker on his smart phone in a senate committee meeting. Despite the fact that I personally feel that anyone prodding at their phone during casual conversation (never mind a meeting) should need an anaesthetic for its removal, it’s actually fairly widely accepted that this goes on. Many people simply cannot bear to be disconnected from the wonders of modern communication for more than a few minutes; we’re all very busy people (cue the Friday funny below).
But are we missing a trick here? If you’re presenting and your audience is going to be emailing, texting and tweeting anyway then maybe the best way to keep them engaged is to hijack the very device they’re surreptitiously using.
We’ll need to hang on a while and see how the second screen revolution progresses before we start devising dual level presentations, and when we do there’ll be a lot of hard work involved in getting in right. Twice the interaction could easily mean twice as boring or half as engaging.
In the meantime we need to keep those phones and tablets where they belong by making sure that every presentation we give connects with its audience and holds their attention. By achieving this we could restore a tech free oasis in a world that badly needs it ‘sorry I missed your call/email/text/tweet, I was in a presentation’….
Here at Eyeful we believe that the only way to find out if something is any good is to ask.
So we quizzed recent attendees of one of our’ Creating Effective Presentations’ training sessions to see what they thought – and here’s what they said…
“Compared to other training it was one of the better and more effective ones I have received. I have taken away a great deal of understanding and knowledge from this course that I believe will help me a great deal in future client presentations. The trainers on the course were exceedingly well versed in their presentation skills and they had a great deal of experience which really shone through in their delivery. They spoke passionately about their fields of expertise, which is essential in capturing the attention and imagination of the participants.”
“It was really interactive, which made it more engaging and memorable.”
“The course gave a great overview of creating an effective presentation.”
“The course made me realise that it’s one thing to create an engaging presentation and another to be able to stand there and deliver it.”
“Definitely – I wish I had this kind of training when I was at university, students and even lecturers would really benefit. I think most people would benefit from this workshop, especially people who often have to deliver client facing presentations.”
“I would recommend this to anyone that works with PowerPoint on a regular basis.”
“Very good, the trainers were friendly and easily approachable.”
“I felt the emphasis on knowing your story, before you even open PowerPoint, was a very strong. It cemented the fact that PowerPoint is the tool and not the most important part of a presentation.”
“I really enjoyed the design elements of the work shop as I’m sure for most other people did, too. Just some shortcuts that we learnt and some of the tools available in PP that I wasn’t aware of are really going to be handy in ensuring we save time whilst creating PPs and making the finished product look a lot more professional. Some of the points in the more theoretical elements of the training were quite obvious if you think about it but the way that they were delivered made it very memorable and ensured that the key take-away was that the content of a presentation is the most important part, which a lot of people forget as they get caught up in design.”
Not only that but all the attendees agreed that the session was informative and most of then found it enjoyable too.
If you’re interested in how our training can help you get more from your presentations you can read all about what training we offer or cut to the chase and drop us a line.
Last week we offered everyone a chance to blow the whistle on poor presentations and it seems that this is just the sort of cathartic release that PPSD (post presentation stress disorder) sufferers need to help them move on with their lives.
The replies so far have covered the complete remit of human emotion and are helping us get a (quite ugly if we’re honest) picture of the state of business presentations today.
In recognition of the fact that there are so many others who need our help, we’ve decided to extend the deadline, so that those of you yet to unburden yourselves can experience the blessed relief that comes with sharing.
Ending the suffering is easy, just click through this link and fill in a simple form. It’s easy and there’s no need to plan a complicated escape route, start contacting far flung embassy’s or console yourself to living in an airport…..
‘Poor Presentation causes International Incident’ is not a headline we ever expected to see, yet it’s actually happening…..
Online Espionage aside, we were wondering just how bad presentations can be, and decided it was time to give a voice to all those who have suffered in silence.
So as Edward Snowden continues his search for exile in far flung corners of the globe we’re offering you the opportunity to whistle blow without incurring any airfares.
Simply click through this link and tell us about the worst presentation you’ve ever seen. You don’t have to name names if you don’t want to, we’re interested in the crime not the criminal. Just tell us what made the presentation so bad and we’ll try to set the world to rights on your behalf.
If you’re unsure on what makes a bad presentation, or you’re unfortunate enough to have never seen a good one, take a peek at our 10 commandments below to see what’s what.
As if saving you the trouble of planning an escape route wasn’t enough, we’ll pick one of you out of the hat to receive some chocs and flowers as a thank-you.
The last seven days have been a real ‘tour de force’ for anyone interested in communication. I’m not talking about cutting edge tech or new software – the last week has highlighted the very best in simple, effective communication. So the next time you’re presenting it might be worth remembering simpler times….
This whole train of thought was set in motion by the story of Gustav and the important role he played during D-Day. Gustav delivered the first news from the Normandy beaches back to the UK.
But Gustav wasn’t a radio operator, an encryption specialist or a spy – Gustav was a pigeon. During one of the most complex and dangerous military campaigns of all time, the first indication of how things were progressing was delivered by a pigeon.
The fact that Gustav was given the Dickin Medal for his efforts (the animal equivalent of the Victoria Cross) shows just how important this communication was.
In a situation more complicated, dangerous and challenging than anything you’ll ever face in a boardroom, effective communication came down to paper, pencil and pigeon.
Communicating by flags is not a new idea either and one of the most impressive examples of how this simple system works when others would fail was seen last week at the Isle of Man TT.
The TT presents some unique communication challenges – the riders are spread out along the 37.73 mile course, they are all wearing helmets and ear plugs, and they are travelling at speed (130mph or thereabouts). Houses, hedgerows, moorland and mountains all pass by faster than the human brain can thoroughly process them. Catching the riders’ attention without causing an accident is no mean feat – and the safety of everyone concerned relies on flags.
With an audience focussed on winning the most dangerous race in the world, effective, safe communication comes down to a stick and some cloth.
Which brings us surprisingly to Britain’s Got Talent and the 2013 winners Attraction. Attraction won by using one of the oldest communication mediums available – shadow theatre.
Believed to have originated in the Han Dynasty China (206BC – 220AD) shadow theatre has been used for centuries to convey complex, emotive stories. It works because it does not require the audience to be literate or share a common language with the presenter (making it perfect for the plethora of BGT audience jokes that I am studiously avoiding).
So when your audience doesn’t understand your language, does effective communication come down to prancing about in a leotard?
Well, much to my personal relief, the answer’sno. But shadow theatre is the pinnacle of visual communication and achieves a level of audience connection and investment that we should aspire to with every image, chart and graph we include in our presentations.