Posts Tagged ‘Learning’

Myths About Technical Talks

In Business Presentations, Communication, Public Speaking on May 18, 2017 at 12:54 PM

too much data

Myths About Technical Talks

Speaking Tip 100

Talks about technical subjects, especially when delivered to technical audiences, tend to be, well, technical.  Speakers go into great depth on the details of the subject while often missing the one thing the audience is really interested in: what it all means.

Many years ago I was working with a scientist who banded birds and tracked their flights across the Pacific from California to Japan. In his presentation, he discussed the 46 types of transmitters he decided not to use. When I asked him why he did this, he replied – “my audience wants to know about the tools I used”. I explained the audience was more interested in what he learned by tracking the birds, a detail he overlooked.

In 1992, Hewlett-Packard labs in Palo Alto, California conducted a survey to determine what technical workers want to hear from other presenters.

“Contrary to conventional wisdom that says the technical audience is eager for a “data dump”, the survey results reflect people’s preference for talks that are well organized and easy to follow. Technical speakers who try to show how much they know by making their presentation complex would be more successful if instead they focused on simplifying their message. It’s a classic example of ‘less is more’”. *

Rather than wanting more technical detail, techies wanted:

  • More concise information
  • More effective style
  • Better visual aids

When dealing with technical information, rather than give the details, tell your audience what it all means. Avoid explaining the ins and outs, the details, and technical specifications – just tell your audience what it means to them. If your audience wants to know the details, they will ask.

Good presentations focus on what their audience wants to know rather than what the speaker thinks they should say.

* Frederick, Gilbert, “The Technical Presentation”, Technical Communication May 1 1992

iSpeakEASY helps people present information in an exciting and relevant manner. Our clients accomplish more in less time. Contact us for information on individual coaching or group workshops.

© 2013 by iSpeakEASY. All Rights Reserved.

Are You Trying To Change The World (or a piece of it)?

In Business Networking Groups, Fund raising, Increased sales, marketing, Public Speaking on April 22, 2012 at 1:16 PM

It takes more than passion, knowledge. and a good cause to bring about change.

We like to think that if we tell people about our cause, they will want to join forces with us because what we are doing is so right.

  • Saving our parks
  • Protecting animals
  • Helping children
  • Raising money for schools
  • Reviving a community theater
  • Making the community a better place to live

The truth is that truth and knowledge is not enough. Passion is good, but even that is not enough to move people.

It takes a well crafted, properly delivered message to get people off their good intentions and moving in a new direction.

iSpeakEASY offers a special workshop designed for “Leadership” and other groups advocating a good cause.

Words, information, and passion are good, but they are not enough. We will help you put these into a short yet powerful message, train you to deliver them well in less than 2 minutes – the amount of time a City Council will give you to speak under “public comments”.

Make your knowledge and passion work toward change.

Click HERE for information on how YOU can learn to change the world in 2 minutes or less.


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