Links of the Week: Week of Nov 5-11


This week, three articles caught my attention: a Q&A with Nancy Duarte on TED Blog; a storytelling post featuring Ira Glass from Ethos3; and an article on using the rhetorical question in presentations from Andrew Dlugan of Six Minutes.

New on TED Blog this week is “How to give more persuasive presentations,” a Q&A with Nancy Duarte.  Duarte’s brand new book, the HBR Guide to Persuasive Presentations.  The interview asks Duarte about the three keys to a strong presentation; what she learned from her own TED Talk; how to overcome presentation anxiety; the best way to begin creating a presentation; and a question about her book’s audience.

My favorite part of the interview relates to Thursday’s post: “Effective Visual Communication: Vintage Slides from GE.”  Duarte explains, “When you look at even how businesses communicated in the ’30s, ’40s and ’50s — they were so much clearer and well-crafted. I recently went to the Stanford Library and I got a bunch of old GE Board meetings from, like, 1957. And I thought, “These are so beautiful!” Their presentations referenced history, they quoted things, they crafted their words in such a beautiful way. Then PowerPoint entered into the mix and suddenly there wasn’t any desire to craft anymore. I think TEDTalks have brought the desire for the craft back” (Source).  It’s so interesting to me that we knew how to present well until PowerPoint and Keynote – the very programs designed to help make presentations stronger.

The second article that grabbed my attention this week comes from Ethos3: “Telling Stories Like Ira Glass.”  Since Chiara Ojeda and I use this very same clip of Glass in our online class, I was excited to hear the Ethos3 analysis.  Watch the clip below:


Ethos3 explains that in the Glass video, the two essential components of storytelling are the anecdote and the moment of reflection.  Ethos3 explains, “Use these storytelling building blocks in your next presentation. As Glass shrewdly points out, no matter how prosaic the topic, if you put it into a story framework, it has momentum and suspense automatically. Your audience will be compelled to listen to hear what comes next” (Source).

The final article of the week comes from my favorite Andrew Dlugan of Six Minutes.  Dlugan’s article is “How many ways can you use rhetorical questions in your speech?” He gives you nine different ways to use the rhetorical question in your next presentation.  From getting your audience to agree with you to stirring emotions to engaging people to think, the rhetorical question is a device we can all begin implementing in our presentations.

What great articles have you been reading lately?


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