A PPT slide deck is a horrible way to convey anything significant. How about a link to audio, or better yet something like an Articulate Presenter or Breeze presentation that combines the audio and the slide deck? I would very much be interested in what you had to say in your presentation, but a PDF of the slide deck doesn’t do much for me.I can completely understand his sentiment. How many times have I told someone that emailing around a PowerPoint slide deck to the sales people doesn’t constitute training. Yet, here I am posting my slides. Why am I willing to do that? The short answer is because the content already exists in that form and I’d like to leverage what I’m already doing – which is not unlike what we all face. But let’s drill down on this a bit.
Before I get too far, let me express a personal bias, shortcoming, style, or whatever you want to call it that has a big impact on how I decide to spend my time when I'm creating content:
I’m far too impatient to sit through an audio (MP3 or embedded) that goes along with a presentation deck.The amount of content transfer vs. the time it takes is just too long. I also have a hard time sitting in a meeting, classroom or any other venue where I feel the pace is too slow. Having had to sit through a recent back-to-school night where the teachers were basically reading you what was in the notes was almost too painful to bear. Where’s the fast forward button like I’m now used to doing on TV shows? And before you tell me that with some presentations you can jump around, I know that and I use those controls when available, its still just that normally unless I’m extremely interested in a topic or it’s a particularly engaging presenter:
I’m more interested in written words that I can scan and drill-down on much more quickly.As an example, take a look at Masie’s recent piece. While I think this is pretty good, I’d rather have had it written out for quick skimming and drill down – Is he going to say anything interesting on this topic? I skim, then I read in detail once I find some interesting stuff. Hard to do in audio. But several people mentioned in the blog world that they liked Masie's piece. Similarly, several people mentioned that they liked going through my presentation on What's Next in eLearning for ASTD Los Angeles even though you likely would need to have Interwise to be able to go through it.
Now don’t get me wrong, I do like in-person exchanges on particular topics so that through Q&A you can find out what you want. Of course, I tend to be a person who is happy asking questions so that I drill down on topics that I find interesting. It’s almost the same as my reading style:
- skimming = initial discourse
- drill down = Q&A
So finally, let me get to the question … I’m creating content on topics all the time. Around the general topic of What’s Next in eLearning (or eLearning 2.0), I’ve created three presentations (one of which is recorded), written lots of blog posts, written an article (coming soon) and had lots of discussions. I have limited time to spend. So, my questions are:
- Given my content and my limited time, how should I choose my medium to provide the best value to people reading my blog?
- Do others share my bias about PPT + Audio value vs. written word?
- Should I personally spend more time recording audio that goes with presentation materials?
I’d would welcome any thoughts that folks have on this topic.
And this is especially timely for me, since I'm going to be making choices around it as I begin to pull together content for ASTD TechKnowledge and my blog on the topic of blogging and social bookmarking.