Some really good insight into why we all hate powerpoint…

Renegade HR:  The Folly of Powerpoint

I truly think that bad and misused PowerPoint is a symptom of a bigger problem:  either lack of intrinsic understanding of what you’re talking about or lack of writing skills.  Maybe you even have both problems.

The same goes for long-winded white papers.  At least in the case of the white paper, the individual circumstances of your audience are an unknown, so the lack of understanding on at least one side is understandable.  Ultimately, however, if you are defining what the problem is and how to solve it, you should have the depth of understanding to break down your message into very simple terms.

Which brings me back to PowerPoint:  If you are presenting on a topic in which you don’t have a strong enough understanding of the topic to put less than 100 words [YIKES!] on each slide, you probably shouldn’t be presenting on the topic.

Every one of the four tips mentioned in the post (tell stories, stop using bullets, stop using words, go naked) only works if you have enough understanding of your topic to let go of your slide show.

Otherwise, you’re just reading aloud the big print version of a research paper.