Fewer words, greater effect.

I have a good business friend, an experienced manager and teacher with a Harvard MBA, whose deep thinking creativity and intelligence are admired by many.  But he dilutes his effectiveness with wordy PowerPoint presentations.  It has become a long running joke between us, as I often remind him that most of us have a very limited attention span and ability to recall important points from a presentation.

Note the title and tone of these insights.  Short, to the point.

Mark Twain said, “I didn’t have time to write a short letter so I wrote a long one instead.”  He cogently encapsulated the problem.

It is more difficult to reduce your thoughts to a few core sentences, but that is what you should do for maximum effect.

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3 Responses to Fewer words, greater effect.

  1. Alberto Casagrande says:

    I know you sent this to millions of fans.

    But I need to reply this time. I spent the last 20 years
    trying to convince the mgmt consulting and business
    world across all continents of the validity of
    what you just said. I lost.

    Still, I think you are right 100%

  2. Sharon Boers says:

    This one really rings a bell with me! When I do a web search and a link sends me to a video presentation I don’t have the patience to listen plus I don’t learn or retain the information as well as when I can view it in print, and a PowerPoint presentation doesn’t help.

  3. Peter Zucker, Ph.D. says:

    I agree with your premise Dave. How I love an executive summary that captures complex concerns in one page.

    When I worked as a prison psychologist at the start of my career (in Powhatan Correctional Center, VA) I was required to keep all complex psych testing reports to the court reduced to no more than 2-pages. Good practice.

    Peter Zucker, Ph.D.
    Co-Founder & Sr. Advisor
    Stars Behavioral Health Group

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