Mango Training gave a Visual Storytelling workshop for 1 and ½ days on 20th February and 21st February.
DAY 1: FULL DAY.
The first task of the trainer Mark Stradling, was to get ‘buy in’ from all the delegates. So, Mark asked the question ‘’The title of this training is Business Storytelling-Visually, so what is my objective for the next day and a half’’? A range of responses were put forward, and a few delegates came close. The answer is ‘’Change the way everyone thinks about business presentations’’. ‘’If we can achieve that, then you will be able to more easily transform from verbal language to visual language’’. The second task was to review all the individual 3 minute presentations that Mark had asked all delegates to create prior to the training. The presentations were on themselves, and there were some fun moments during the presentations. Overall the standard was good, and Mark reviewed the most common mistakes with the group namely layout, graphics, use of pictures, structure and visualisation. The group then moved on to the theory part of the training which is necessary to be able to change and transform presentations using visuals and storytelling. This session looked at the individual elements of Visual Messaging, Visual Cognition, Visual Storytelling and Visualisation. To more easily understand Visual Cognition, Mark demonstrated and described the processes that audiences go through during a presentation. The final part of the day was splitting everyone into groups, and firstly identifying existing SCB slides that everyone could now change and secondly transforming them with the tools and techniques they had learned.
DAY 2: HALF DAY.
The first part of the morning was a series of interactive and fun exercises and demonstrations including a ‘memory test’ to demonstrate that audiences cannot listen and read at the same time, a ‘disappearing card’ trick to show how audiences do not pay attention to everything during a presentation, and finding ‘hidden messages’ in pictures to demonstrate why it is important to try and find out what the audience knows about your presentation topic prior to delivering the presentation. Mark then revealed the next session which was called ‘What Happens Next’. This is where he shows real life slides from the financial and data industry that he created for clients, and asks delegates to correctly predict what the animation sequence should be in order for the key messages of the slide to be understood. This was a real ‘eye opening session’ and generated a lot of questions and discussion as to how the animation sequencing was created, how to actually create the various graphic and visual elements that were used, and the overall impact of how easy it was to understand the messages of the slide using the various tools and techniques. This then led perfectly into the PowerPoint™ workshop that would take up the rest of the morning. Mark suggested that he could save up to 20% of delegates time in creating presentations with ‘Mark’s Magic Tricks’. The session focused on techniques that most people do not know actually exist, yet which are real time savers. The group learned many new easy to use techniques including the power of using the ‘Shift and Control’ keys, using the ‘Selection and Visibility’ pane, ‘Animation and Motion’ techniques, correctly ‘Inserting Pictures’ into shapes, seamlessly ‘Moving between Slides’, and how to Focus the Audiences attention by ‘Blanking out the Screen’.
To close, Mark asked the group whether he had in fact Changed the Way they thought about presentations, and with a show of hands, it seemed unanimous that he did. Mark offered to complete the training with an additional half day to focus exclusively on PowerPoint skills, as this was an area where most of the group needed more help.