02/10/13 – Royalty With A Touch of Technology
For our 3rd session this season we took a giant leap from our comfort zone with not 1, not 2 but 3 speakers using an Overhead Projector. Add one high tech topics session and a cherry on the top in the form of a visit by our ASC Midlands District Vice President, Mr Brian Micklewhaite, and the night could be described as another ‘night of firsts’ (see the last club report!). Our first speaker was Sarah Burwood with her speech entitled “Do Clothes Define Us?”. Sarah made excellent use of the power of PowerPoint to demonstrate, through various pictures, the way clothing can affect the way we think about a person and about the impression we make through observation. The speech also touched gently on the subject of the Burka, which could be described as a rather sensitive issue. Our second speaker was Dr Lyndon Wall with his speech entitled “My Plastic Brain”. A technical speech which used pictures to help de-clutter the technical jargon that can so easily be associated with medical terms. A touch of humour and the addition of a prop in the form of a life sized human brain further added to a well thought out speech. Our final speaker was Phil Brown with his speech entitled “I Blame It On Mr Potato Head” which also included a change of technology by plugging in his iPad to the projector and using Keynotes as an alternative to PowerPoint. This speech took a look at the history of advertising to children and highlighted the potential dangers of this business practice and what might we be able to do about it. All 3 speeches are part of the Advanced Section (F4) under the ASC speakers guide and, without consultation, all seemed to focus on human relationships and the brain. There were many lessons to be learned from the experience on the evening but provided an excellent and exciting night. In the 3 years I’ve been a member of the club I have only seen the Projector rolled out on 1 occasion! A far cry from the almost expected business presentation where PowerPoint is a cultural requirement. But what of the lessons that could be learned by all of us. Here are a few to consider….
- Make sure the technology works!
- Prepare your venue earlier if technology is used.
- Avoid presenting to the screen.
- Make sure the slides add value to your speech.
- Practice with the technology.
- Avoid slides with sentences or lots of details.
- Remember, you should be able to give your speech without the need of the overheads (always useful if the technology fails you).
- Finally, a nice little litmus test, if you were to hand out your overheads to the audience such that they can read it and understand it without you presenting it to them, then you no longer have a job as a speaker!
The Topics session was chaired by our very own Roy Gibson who presented a variety of pictures, from the Loch Ness Monster to a Lama in a taxi (yes … lama in a taxi!) with our intrepid topic takers speaking for 2 minutes. The evening was a great success. An education for everyone and a sure thing to be repeated in the future. If you weren’t there …. You really did miss out. Philip Brown Club President