You’ve seen the whiteboard advantage—complex problems are made simple. Difficult decisions are made easier. Boring presentations are transformed. Get 6 easy and quick tips to gain this almost unfair advantage.
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Most people are nervous about drawing in front of peers or high-profile clients. We don’t want to look foolish. We don’t want to embarrass ourselves. And we definitely don’t want to blow the opportunity.
So instead of taking a calculated risk, building our skills, and practicing to perfection, we make the seemingly logical choice. We avoid ever picking up a marker. We steer clear of whiteboards. And we pray that this trend will go away soon.
But, since you’re reading this article, you have already identified yourself as a winner. You are ready to put in the time and learn the skills that give you a competitive advantage. I’m talking about: whiteboard interactive presenting.
Make it easy for your clients to choose you: go to the whiteboard. But don’t do what everyone else is doing. Be better. Be professional. Here are 5 tips that if used correctly give you an almost unfair advantage.
Tip 1. Know Before You Go
Plan your whiteboard presentation—before you’re standing in front of a group. Just like building a house, use a blueprint. For whiteboard presenting, use a presentation storyboard. Know specifically what you will show—and when you will show it. This helps you relax. And it is a recipe for success, especially in front of an important client.
Tip 2. Explain What You Draw
Just about any complex problem, project or process can be made clearer with a picture. But don’t leave the interpretation up to chance. While you’re immersed in your content and presentation topic, remember that this is the first time your audience is seeing it. Explain the significance of what you are sketching. Explain the ‘obvious.’
Tip 3. Escape Chicken Scratch
Far too many presenters believe that any old writing on the whiteboard is better than nothing. Well, it isn’t true. Your illegible writing will destroy credibility as fast as showing up in gym shorts.
If your lettering is awful and people routinely tell you, "I can’t read a word you write," pay attention. Most people hate to give such candid feedback. Your busy client may not tell you to your face. They’ll just decide to take their business elsewhere.
Tip 4. Free Up Your Inner Artist
Not everyone is born with artistic talent. Not everyone has the natural gene of cartooning or caricature. But that’s still no excuse for stick figures and funky drawings.
While this may have worked 10 years ago, or even a couple years ago, times have changed. If you think that apologies and crude drawings help your cause, think again.
Fortunately, you don’t really need tons of drawings and sketches to make an impact. A few well-crafted images will help you make your point. When you learn these, you’ll quickly impress clients with your ‘artistic skill.’
Tip 5. Understand Visual Frameworks
A whiteboard is NOT a giant piece of paper. It is not best used for scrawl, lists and a few random words sprinkled here and there. Visual frameworks are an essential piece of successful presenting.
Once you learn the power of displaying conversation, you’ll unlock rich conversations, intense collaboration, and rapid decision-making. Without this knowledge, you’ll just use the board for gathering and pushing information—without full authority.
The best news? There is a simple set of principles, rules and tools for how to open up conversations, command attention and win results.
Using these rules you’ll know how build rapport, streamline decisions and close more deals. Are you ready to give powerful whiteboard presentations and gain the ‘unfair’ advantage?