A Technology Blackout Taught Me A Lesson in Storytelling And Research
Our work network, email and internet connection went down today.I didn’t think those things happened in 2012 … but apparently they do.
It was a technology black out. People wandered the halls making awkward conversation. Some left early, paralyzed by the inability to email or save documents to the network.
Unfortunately for me, I had to deliver a research presentation over the telephone. The presentation was meant to take advantage of a trusty PowerPoint deck. But technology had left the building.
I could have rescheduled but I was presenting to Directors, Managers and a bunch of business leaders who have very busy schedules - so rescheduling would have meant a long delay. I decided to force my way through.
Losing all visual presentation helpers - like my PowerPoint presentation - teaches you to quickly tell a better story. I had nothing to show people (and people are very visual) so I had to quickly try and tell a story with the data or I’d lose people.
I think I threw in a few more adjectives than I normally would … and tried to tell a better story over what I might have said with a PowerPoint friend.
Being forced to rely on my words, I found my hands flying all over the place (lucky no one could see me) and my story gradually becoming more creative.
I’m not sure if I pulled it off - or not. I’m sure I stumbled a bit. But losing the visual component seems to encourage better storytelling and was an interesting lesson in delivering research to an audience.