HBR Guide to Persuasive Presentations. Book Cover

HBR Guide to Persuasive Presentations.

Authors: Nancy Duarte
Publishing Year: 2012
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Reading time: Key takeways: Quotes:

What’s inside

Presentations are an essential tool when it comes to success in the corporate world. Presentations can help a company get new clients, investors or introduce a new product to the concerned members of the organization. However, presentations can seem tedious and dreadful. First of all, it is hard to generate ideas and to arrange fragmented thoughts into a logical sequence to make sense. And if you can produce presentable content, there are problems like fumbling, time mismanagement, losing focus from the main points and so on. These hindrances come in the way of a good presentation, which will hit the right chords with the target audience. Through these insights, you will learn the most extensive methods and techniques for a successful presentation. You will learn to present ideas coherently, strike the right balance between analysis and emotions, create memorable visuals and hold your audience's attention.

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Lesson 1- What is a Presentation?

We always assume that we, the presenters, are the star of the show when we present. We feel too important in our role as presenters. However, we are wrong. Ken Haemer, Presentation Research Manager, AT&T, once said that a presentation design without consideration for the audience is synonymous with writing a love letter and addressing 'to whom it may concern. Do not underestimate the power of the audience, as they will determine whether your idea takes flight or dies at the end of the presentation. Your presentation should always consider the needs of your audience and why they would get on board with your idea.

  • Start by segmenting your ideas along the lines of politics, age, ethnicity, gender, and other socio-cultural factors. Also, take into consideration their values, attitudes, and interests. Do a background assessment of their industry, locations, and needs and then assess which group will have the most profound impact on the adoption of the idea.
  • This brings up the idea of knowing your audience. Use your contacts and channels to get to know your audience personally. This is possible when presenting to a small audience. Use social media platforms and other means to get an overview of your audience. 
  • Keep your presentations conversational. It will be less boring for the audience if you can create an emphatic connection. 
  • Make sure you present concisely to senior executives as they are a tough nut to crack. First of all, notify the audience how you will segment the allotted time for summary, discussion, and so on. And get to the point without any extraneous introductions. Create executive summary slides to provide a brief overview of critical points.
  • Most people mistake the purpose of a presentation. Presentations are meant to convey ideas to the intended target audience and bring certain behavioural shifts in them. You are looking to alter their beliefs or a preconceived notion about a particular idea or product to which they might be sceptical at first. But through your persuasive presentation, you look to bring about shifts and transformation in them to suit your needs. 
  • You should always try to look for common grounds. If you can hit the right frequency, you will make your audience listen to you. Shared experience and common goals create an atmosphere of shared interests and goals. You may not always find it easy to develop common grounds. Often you will share one or two similar interests with the audience. You need to weave your presentation through an intersection of

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HBR Guide to Persuasive Presentations. Quotes

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About the author

Nancy Duarte, a communication expert and author, revolutionized the art of presentations. Known for “Resonate” and “Slide:ology,” her work redefines storytelling in business. As CEO of Duarte, Inc., she empowers individuals and organ...

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HBR Guide to Persuasive Presentations. Book Cover
Chapter List
  • Lesson 1- What is a Presentation?
  • Lesson 2- Basics of a Presentation
  • Lesson 3- Application of Storytelling Techniques
  • Lesson 4- How to Deliver the Message
  • Lesson 5- How to Make the Most out of Slides
  • Lesson 6- Practical Issues in the Real World
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FAQs

In the summary of HBR Guide to Persuasive Presentations. book, there are 6 key lessons. These lessons include:

  1. Lesson 1- What is a Presentation?
  2. Lesson 2- Basics of a Presentation
  3. Lesson 3- Application of Storytelling Techniques
  4. Lesson 4- How to Deliver the Message
  5. Lesson 5- How to Make the Most out of Slides
  6. Lesson 6- Practical Issues in the Real World

HBR Guide to Persuasive Presentations. by Nancy Duarte was published in 2012.

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In the printed version of HBR Guide to Persuasive Presentations. book have over 300 pages and usually takes 8-10 days to finish. However, with the Wizdom app, including its summary and audiobook, it can be completed in just 15 minutes.

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