Planners and Performers
post # 352 — April 12, 2007 — a Client Relations post
There’s a spectrum of presentation styles, between planners and peformers.
I’m the latter.
Personally, I have difficulty sometimes working with and through human resource and training departments who, when we’re working on putting together seminars or speeches, want to:
- Specify learning objectives
- Develop a teaching plan
- Identify in advance every slide that is going to be used, in which order
- Know which questions are going to be asked of the group at which point
- Otherwise establish a fixed methodology or flow for the session
I know these people are doing their job, and that many of them are highly trained in “adult learning.” I also clearly see the need to capture the content, the process and the flow when a company or firm is trying to roll out a program which is going to be delivered many times in different locations.
I just find it hard to slot my delivery style into such a structured, planned approach.
I’m prepared to be accountable for achieving goals when making presentations: I just hate being locked in specifying in advance exactly what’s going to be said, in what order. I never know that until the (interactive) performance begins.
I can also work with “planners” to help THEM develop programs that can be given (by others) multiple times.
But when the stage lights go up and the curtain rises, it’s a performance! With all the strengths and uncertainties that are implied by that word.
By the way, this doesn’t only apply to formal seminars. For me, it applies to all client meetings: I prepare, but I stop way short of preparing a fixed, formal presentation. Even there, I take the performing approach, rather than the (structured – ‘who’s going to say what when?’) planned approach.
Does anyone have experience or insight as to how to capture the benefits of both approaches?