Review: Resonate


resonate: Present Visual Stories that Transform Audiences by Nancy Duarte is one of my presentation bibles.  Since I mention resonate so often, I thought I’d finally write my review of the text in order to explain why it is so incredible.  Here are my five key takeaways from resonate:

1.  The presenter is not the star of the show but, rather, acts as a supporting character to the star: the audience.  The presenter’s role is that of guide, adviser, instructor, teacher.  When we get away from “me-centered” behavior and instead focus on the audience needs, presentations resonate.

2.  Duarte created the Sparkline as an analysis tool for speeches.  The Sparkline is a shape that moves back and forth between the present, the “what is,” and the future, the “what could be.”  Duarte explains the Sparkline shape in her TEDxEast Talk.  Watch here.

3.  The first few chapters emphasize storytelling in all presentations as the medium that connects and resonates with audiences.  Duarte uses the Hero Cycle to explain the process the audience goes through during a presentation.

4.  Duarte defines the necessary components of a speech introduction and explains that the three modes of persuasion, ethos, pathos, and logos, must be used in order to effectively persuade.

5.  My fifth takeaway from resonate is the process of creating a presentation from the “generating ideas” phase to the “visualize message” phase.  Duarte does a masterful job of explaining this process.

For those of you who love resonate as much as I do: what are your favorite lessons from the text?  Purchase your copy of resonate here.


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