Matt Foley: I am 35 years old. I am divorced and I live in a van down by the river.
Intro: Kelly Coughlin is a CPA and CEO of BankBosun, a management consulting firm helping bank C Level Officers navigate risk and discover reward. He is the host of the syndicated audio podcast, BankBosun.com. Kelly brings over 25 years of experience with companies like PWC, Lloyds Bank, and Merrill Lynch. On the podcast Kelly interviews key executives in the banking ecosystem to provide bank C suite officers, risk management, technology, and investment ideas and solutions to help them navigate risks and discover rewards. And now your host, Kelly Coughlin.
Greetings, this is Kelly Coughlin, CPA and CEO of BankBosun, helping bank C suite execs navigate risk and discover reward a sea of risk, regulation and revenue opportunities.
One of the benefits, perhaps the only benefit, of getting older, is having a huge portfolio of …mistakes. Some wise person said, “Many times what we perceive as an error or failure is actually a gift. And eventually we find that lessons learned from that experience prove to be of great worth.” I say baloney to that. The mistakes I have made cost me and my company money. So, I reject that idea.
And another wise man, Alexander Pope, an 18th century British poet, said “A man should never be ashamed to admit he has been wrong, because he is wiser today than he was yesterday” I say, forget that idea too. Wrong is wrong. And yes, I might be wiser, but I certainly am irritated and embarrassed at a few of my own mistakes.
And one of the BIGGEST mistakes I have made over my 25 illustrious years in the business world is with presentations. And my weapon of choice was Powerpoint presentations. And for all you prospects, clients, and conference attendees who have had to endure one or more of my busy, complex, unclear, and lengthy PowerPoint presentations, I now herewith formally apologize for the harm that was done to you through boredom, confusion, and frankly lousy theater.
As many of you know, I am a huge fan of using audio…the human voice as a great tool to communicate your mission, message, and mechanics (that’s my term for product features and benefits) of your company and your products and services. Your spoken word is so much more powerful than the written word. With your voice you can communicate with energy, emotion, empathy, excitement… coincidentally they all begin with the letter E. I don’t know about your writing skills, but if I try to communicate my value proposition using words that communicate energy, emotion, excitement…they just don’t work in business writing.
This is why live presentations are great. They allow you to communicate your mission, message and mechancs of your company and value proposition with emotion and energy…those E words…That said, if that message is not clear, concise and credible then you should just keep your mouth shut…take the advice of Matt Foley, Motivational Speaker, “I wish you could just shut your big yapper.” God, I love Matt Foley.
Many of the mistakes we make with presentations are easily controllable…and I certainly have made my fair share of these, even before we talk about non-verbal mistakes we make…by the way, I encourage you to listen to my two-part interview with Robin Kermode, where he talked about a couple non-verbal tips like squeezing your butt together to lower your center of gravity, and what to do with your hands and how to stand.
In my mind, after having made dozens of miserable presentations, there are five things that can dramatically improve our Powerpoint presentations.
To Write it, you can use an outline or a mind map or whatever works for you. I personally like the mind map approach, whatever works for you…write it out literally. Tell your story in an interesting way. If you haven’t listened to Paul Smith’s audio interview Sell with a Story or Joanne Black’s interview Pick Up the Damn Phone, you should. I interviewed both of them over the past six months. Their ideas can help you in writing your speech. So you write and rewrite your speech and then you need to connect it to your Powerpoint images. Copy and paste your script into your Powerpoint slide notes at the bottom of the slide page….What I like to do is copy the entire speech into the first slide…and then start cutting and pasting into the subsequent slides from this first one. If you haven’t created the slides, then this text will help you with the theme and message and image you want in that particular slide. Keep editing and reading aloud and rewriting and reading aloud again. This process is terrific for creating your talk and also, by the way, recalling the talk. And then once you have it and the slides are pretty good, record your voice making the presentation. You can either record this in Powerpoint or in another audio recording application. If you have someone else helping you with the Powerpoint slides, having this audio content will be incredibly helpful for them in creating the slideshow. So, back to the client that complained about lack of detail and content, when you provide your slide deck to interested clients or prospects, you also provide them the slide deck with the transcript AND you provide them the recorded presentation with the slides advancing with your audio overlay. It’s a great repurposing of the presentation and it offers you a way to repeat it and deliver it again and again with other prospects or clients throughout the company for those who couldn’t attend, liked it so much they wanted to hear it again or perhaps they had a martini at lunch and fell asleep…
So to summarize, it goes like this:
To get some help and guidance the non-verbal stuff listen to my interviews with Robin Kermode and Chris Carlson, both actors. To get some help on how to write it listen to Joanne Black and Paul Smith…you can find all of them on our website or just google bankbosun.com and their name: Robin Kermode, Chris Carlson, Joanne Black and Paul Smith.
Most bank executives have to make presentation all the time..to their board, shareholders, employees, regulators, cucstomers, prospects…I personally lover working on these presentations. To me it’s like writing poetry for business. You have a limited number of lines, words and time to communicate a powerful impactful and memorable message. So if you want help, give me a call.
Thanks for listening.
Outro: We want to thank you for listening to the syndicated audio program, BankBosun.com The audio content is produced by Kelly Coughlin, Chief Executive Officer of BankBosun, LLC; and syndicated by Seth Greene, Market Domination LLC, with the help of Kevin Boyle. Video content is produced by The Guildmaster Studio, Keenan Bobson Boyle. The voice introduction is me, Karim Kronfli. The program is hosted by Kelly Coughlin. If you like this program, please tell us. If you don’t, please tell us how we can improve it. Now, some disclaimers. Kelly is licensed with the Minnesota State Board of Accountancy as a Certified Public Accountant. The views expressed here are solely those of Kelly Coughlin and his guests in their private capacity and do not in any other way represent the views of any other agent, principal, employer, employee, vendor or supplier.