Presentation Hack

The little things can make big impact.

I've spent a bulk of my policing career assigned collaterally to various training units. In 2001, I became a Firearms Instructor...and slowly gained more and more trainer responsibility. I eventually began The Illinois Model as a hobby venture to provide outside consulting to various police departments, organizations, and associations. Part of that is moderating small intimate workshops and giving presentations at large-scale conferences.

Along my journey, I continue to learn lessons on running a classroom and giving lectures and presentations. My Presentation Hack column is my way of sharing these lessons, tricks, and tactics with those of you committed to becoming a better public speaker, trainer, conference presenter, or classroom teacher.

Here are some of the posts in my column:
  • Webinar Slide Design -- Coming soon. Send me your questions to be addressed! 
  • Giving a Briefing -- Can you give (& receive) a briefing that's been stripped of the insignificant details? Or are you afraid of omitting something from your message? 
  • The Allure of "Exposure" - Do you speak at conferences with the long-term hopes of networking and being discovered? Do you take a short-term approach of I work = You pay
  • Giving Your Audience Digital Links - How can we more easily share cited resources or followup materials with our audiences? Emailed files and thumb drives are a thing of the past!
  • Invitation to Debate - How can we better invite our audience into fruitful discussion & debate on complex topics?
  • Evidence-Based Slide Design? - There is actually research about designing slides!
  • Slides versus Handouts - Projected slides makes terrible handouts. And vice-versa! Also some hints on designing workbooks. 
  • Your Last Slide(s) - Making a stronger ending to your presentation is not too hard. Using the right types of slides can help.
  • Have Any of You Idiots Not Seen This? - Addressing imbalances in knowledge in the audience.
  • The Looping Intro Slideshow - How to better spend those minutes before your presentation as your audience fills the room. I recommend an auto-playing slide deck with a handful of minimalist slides.
  • Storytelling, Imagery, and Design Principles...For Academics - Why do academics suck so badly at designing slides and telling stories? 
I hope these lessons help in your journey!

Lou Hayes, Jr.
The Illinois Model


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