Which slides can you swap for a S.T.A.R. Moment?

Does your presentation include a S.T.A.R. Moment – Something They’ll Always Remember? This is a concept introduced by Nancy Duarte in her book Resonate.

I was recently reminded of the power of S.T.A.R. Moments when I ran across this Southwest Airlines ad.

What amazing timing! It really illustrates the speaker’s point about on-time arrivals.

I was recently working with a client preparing to present to venture capitalists. Part of his presentation included talking about a project where he only had 1.5 months funds left before he would be out of business. Thankfully, he landed additional investors in time to save his company.

I wanted to dramatize this moment, and so I suggested he use an hourglass. With the sand running out, he would present that part of his story, building the audience’s suspense.

“You mean a slide with an hourglass on it? How would we do that” he asked.

“No,” I said, “a real hourglass.”

He’d explain his project was running out of money, turn over the hourglass, and then use 55 seconds to narrate his efforts to locate funding before his company went ker-splat. All the while, the audience would have their eyes on the sand draining from the hourglass. His timing had to be perfect – exactly what was needed to give the investors something they’d always remember.

The presentation worked. The investors were sold on his ideas and agreed to back him in helping to open new markets.

PowerPoint is great for information transfer. But stories and props are usually more dramatic. Which of your slides can you trade for a S.T.A.R. Moment?

About the author: Bruce Gabrielle is author of Speaking PowerPoint: the new language of business, showing a 12-step method for creating clearer and more persuasive PowerPoint slides for boardroom presentations. Subscribe to this blog or join my LinkedIn group to get new posts sent to your inbox.

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