Most of us have been in the presentation there something really smart is being presented. The problem with these presentations is that most of the time they are very boring. In fact they are not only boring but painful to look at. Loads of figures in the standard white tables with no colours. We don’t tend to remember these types of presentations very well. But the ones with less data more beautifully presented tend to stick with us longer.
Anatomy of the boring data
After doing a lot of work behind the scenes and seeing results in unpolished format we forget that this is just part of the job. We spend only couple minutes creating simple presentation. Some times it is good enough. But presentation can make or brake your project. If you want your presentation and information to be remembered it must never be boring. And presenting data in boring and overwhelming way will do just that.
Beautiful data is the way to go
After spending a lot of time with your data you will get very used to it. That’s why sometimes it’s hard to see if something is wrong with how your data is presented. To find these problems you need to step back a bit. When preparing for the presentation you should always think about your audience. Ask yourself how much detail they need. Only if they are very familiar with data when more detail is ok. But most of the time you can find something in your presented data that can be taken out and it wouldn’t make a difference.
Once you have less data related clutter in your presentation. Spend some time on trying to understand your audience a bit more. Look into data from different angle. Find which bits will represent your work in the best way for your audience. Less points of data works better as your time is limited.
After you found your key points present you need to find the way to present them. There are many different options of presenting your data beautifully. Charts can give audience view of changes over the periods of time. Pictures containing real-life situations, cartoons, infographics will make your point easier to understand and remember. Long list of bullet point will make everyone bored and sleepy.
Find ways to represent your data could be a challenge. Spend couple minutes to see whats available you and relates to your audience. One advice before you jump into creating visuals. Try to keep balance between flashy and dull. If your data will be presented to flashy your figures might get forgotten. If dull no one will remember you presenting after a day or two.
As you never can be sure about your own work show it to friends of family members to get different opinions. This will help to find and fix how your data looks, spot some spelling and grammar mistakes and overall make it more professional.
How to know if it works?
When presenting anything the audience will tell you everything. How you presentation looks like. How you speak and what joke you made during the presentation. Even how you stud and acted on the stage. It will all impact on how your presentation will be taken by audience. The overall picture is very important and beautiful data is just one piece if the puzzle. Don’t take it too seriously and make it as fun as you can. Always remember most of the time you are going on the stage to entertain people and if you do it right they will remember your work better and longer.
Some links to give you some ideas about beautiful data: