It's a sign of the times.
Recently, a graduate from one of my presentations workshops spoke at a major conference in Taupo. He completed his introduction, reached the first specific point in his content, then flicked on a PowerPoint slide to illustrate that point. When he finished the point he turned PowerPoint off. The slide was no longer relevant and would distract the audience from the next point. What could be more sensible?
But as he started to speak, the conference organiser immediately rushed across the stage to help him, thinking There's nothing on the screen so something must have gone wrong. She took some convincing that he did it on purpose!
That's how dysfunctional meetings, presentations and speeches have become since the arrival of PowerPoint and other electronic audio visual aids.
I'm on a crusade now, to get presenters to stop hiding behind electronic aids. Yes, PowerPoint is a brilliant aid - but only if it illustrates a specific point and then vanishes. As a society we must grow the courage to return to presenter-based presentation. People sell ideas way better than non-stop slide shows.
Want to know how to do it? See previous blogs of mine. Particularly PowerPoint Tip 8: make PowerPoint your servant, not your master.