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Painting pictures for listeners without using PowerPoint

I’m going to get into nothing but hot water over this. But heck, it’s cold outside and maybe a little heat is called for. Let’s start with I DO believe. Some people have an eye for what’s going on in life and others have an ear for it. You may have an eye for automotive design. On the other hand, you may not have as acute an eye but you do have an ear…like, of course, your ear for music.

I’m vaguely troubled, however, by the theory that students should be taught in a way that matches their learning preference or that presenters should present in a way that matches an audience member’s learning preference. Instead, no matter what the learning preference is, when you’re talking, you’re basically in the role of a teacher. And the teacher in all of us should be able to delight a listener’s eyes AND her ears. If you think that using PowerPoint is necessary to get your point across, you’re selling yourself short. If you do it right, she’ll say, “He painted a pretty good picture of what’s going on out there.” Suppose you worked for a company introducing a new smart watch. Before the proposed watch design appears on screen, imagine saying, “America’s first frontier was the sea. We began as a string of coastal communities dominated by the Atlantic Ocean. It was a storm wracked wilderness that made the forests of the interior look like a beckoning refuge. In a similar fashion, the watch we’re introducing to consumers next week will beckon them to come to it’s amazing features. And here it is.”

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