Handling Transitions

Stephen B. posted a couple of questions about Conference Room style presentations, arising from my ChangeThis manifesto Presenting to Small Audiences:Turn off the projector.  I will deal with his first question today:

How should the presenter handle the transition between slides within the handout? Repeatedly instructing the audience to turn to the next page feels a little 'clunky'.

One way to solve this is to vary your language.  Some times you'll say "turn to the next page"; other times "on page 3 we will see how… etc." Keep in mind that with conference room style presentations, you end up with far fewer slides than with  ballroom style:  typically between 3 and 6, and occasionally even 2 or just 1 outstanding slide.  So your audience won't be turning the page very often. 

An even better approach is to design your presentation storyline using the S.Co.R.E. approach (Situation, Complication, Resolution, Example). I describe this method in detail in Advanced Presentations by Design, and there is a brief summary of it in step six of the new Design a Presentation feature of the Extreme Presentation website. 

Score example

(S.Co.R.E. card example from Advanced Presentations by Design)

The benefit of this approach is that you will usually be transitioning on a complication. You’ll be building up your audience’s interest right at the page turn, so that they are curious to see what comes next.  For example, you might say: “You probably think that our staff will see this program as just another "flavor of the month."  Let me show you why this will not be the case, on the next page, page 3.”

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