Home » Blog » Presentation Storytelling is Child’s Play

Breaking news – kids are amazing!

While sat at home working on a client project, my six-year-old daughter came to show me something on the family tablet. To my surprise, it was not a video watching another person playing a video game (as is so often the case) – instead, she was showing off her own very carefully crafted PowerPoint presentation.

I was gobsmacked.

Nobody had taught her how to do this; she had simply picked it up from watching her teacher presenting to her at school and asking some simple questions of her big brother. Furthermore, this wasn’t some cutesy Pitch Presentation to convince me to provide more sugary treats to the cupboards. Instead, she had created a presentation as if she was going to teach a class, adding screengrabs, interactive links, drawings, and joy-upon-joy, keeping content to a minimum on the slide (she’ll be taking my job before I know it).

This extremely proud parent moment got me pondering about when presentation storytelling is first introduced into our lives. It quickly dawned on me that we are on the receiving end of presentations for most of our modern lives. This normally starts in education where our schools are set up in an audience and presenter mode from as young as 3 or 4 years old. We all faced the teacher, and they faced us, ready to deliver another education nugget to our brains.

Interestingly many of us will have even experienced classes that would have easily pre-dated any mention of PowerPoint (don’t forget presentations don’t just mean PowerPoint!). Back in the day, the tools of choice were literal photo slides and overhead projectors, whiteboards and the agonising screech of chalk on a blackboard (shudder).

Today’s tech-savvy kids have various presentation styles filtered into their brains every day. When my daughter isn’t having her clumsy dad present the best way to spill curry on the dinner table, she is bombarded with presentations from all sides. Aside from teachers (true heroes in my opinion –more on the part they play in presentation education in a future blog), she has hundreds of diverse types of YouTube presenters/TV shows/advertisers/swimming instructors/dance tutors/sports coaches and more, each portraying a unique type of presentation. Some of those presentation habits will be both good and bad (the correct information backed up with examples, not speaking to the audience in the suitable format etc.), and time will tell what she has learnt from them all. Judging from her first attempt, she’s picked up some great habits.

But what of the rest of us grown-ups? Some pretty poor presentation experiences have already frazzled many adult brains over the years. Even today, you’ll find those same habits being splurged back into last-minute presentations (check out your local coffee house most weekdays around 8am – you’ll spot them with open laptops, surrounded by empty cappuccino cups and shaky hands!). Equally, you’ll find a batch of over-confident presenters with laptops closed making tea minutes before their presentation slots in their home offices.

The point is, there are several different types of presenters, and we here at Eyeful are certain that they need a variety of materials and guidance to either get them out of a sinking hole, bring their egos back down to earth or provide some reassurance. Unfortunately, the reality is that many of us will have had little to no presentation experience in our lives other than what we have watched and will have simply been thrown in at the deep end, typically by our workplace with no choice.

We couldn’t stand by and let presenters suffer anymore, with many still struggling with the basic presentation storytelling and PowerPoint skills that a 6-year-old would (apparently) breeze through. In response, we’ve developed a comprehensive range of presenation skills training courses that cover a wide range of needs, tailored to suit the type of presentation relevant to you i.e. sales and pitch presentation skills, technical, internal comms, marketing presentations and also bespoke presenation skills training too.  These presentation skills courses hone in on a range of important skills from building core presentation skills to engaging audiences and delivering compelling stories. Moreover, we make the training work for you based on where you are in your presentation development, from quivering wreck to unconsciously incompetent.

With technology developing at a pace, the presentation world will continue to change. Who knows how we’ll be presenting in 20 years? It will be interesting to see how today’s youngsters react in their adult life when creating business presentations of their own.

As for me, I’m already being upstaged by a 6-year-old whizz kid – long may it continue!

 

RECOMMENDED READING:

Dig deeper into Eyeful’s presentation training:
https://eyefulpresentations.com/presentation-training-courses/

How does your presentation measure up?
https://eyefulpresentations.com/resources/presentation-performance-review/

 

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