About a week ago, I had the opportunity of making a presentation to more than 300 banking professionals on industry guidelines. I’ve been in my current company for 17 years already and I’ve been an emcee and/or a moderator but never a speaker in a conference. Yikes!
I wondered whether I should do my usual “death by bullet points” type of presentation? I didn’t think so. I was right smack in the middle of a presentation made by the country manager of an international card network and the principal consultant of an international consulting company. I knew I wanted something different but I didn’t know how.
I was rescued by Dan Roam’s book “Show and Tell”, a book about making extraordinary presentations. I stumbled upon the book on my last trip to Singapore while I was in the airport waiting for my flight back home. I didn’t know who Dan Roam was (apparently he has a bestseller called “Back of the Napkin”).
I was working on my outline using the book as my guide but I was not yet completely sold whether I will use the presentation style as suggested. A week before the conference, I had the misfortune of getting sick and had to rest for several days. When I was finally able to get back to my presentation, I had very little time to prepare. At the last minute, I had to check with my boss and some of my colleagues what I had in mind. I needed to check if I would still be credible if I applied what I learned from “Show and Tell”.
The three rules of show and tell:
1. Lead with the truth and the heart will follow.
2. Lead with a story and understanding will follow.
3. Lead with the eye and the mind will follow.
So, what’s so wrong about these rules? They make perfect sense right?! Of course! What I had to consult was the choice of the picture style – pictures vs graphics vs drawings. I did try to check out available images. Firstly, what was available kind of all kind of looked the same. Secondly, I could not find the “perfect” images for what I had in mind. I ended up drawing my presentation!
Here were some of the images I used for the presentation:
This is how one of the slides actually looked like:
My presentation was well received and a lot of people have a hard time believing that I actually drew the images they saw in the presentation.
That’s me! Sorry, the official pictures are not out yet. This was a picture taken by one of the attendees who sent it to me via WhatsApp.
So, it was not only the first time for me to speak in a conference, I actually shared my doodles with 300+ people! Extremely ironic for an introvert who has not shared with colleagues, friends and acquaintances in the field that she has a blog.
Whew! I was happy with that experience. It was not perfect but definitely a lot better than I imagined.