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HBR Guide to Persuasive Presentations (HBR Guide Series) (Harvard Business Review Guides) Paperback – October 2, 2012

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Frequently Bought Together

HBR Guide to Persuasive Presentations (HBR Guide Series) (Harvard Business Review Guides) + HBR Guide to Better Business Writing (HBR Guide Series) + HBR's 10 Must Reads on Communication (with featured article “The Necessary Art of Persuasion,” by Jay A. Conger)
Price for all three: $40.81

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Editorial Reviews

Review

“This concise, yet packed little book might contain all you need to know about giving a better presentation… If you do any kind of public speaking, or want to, this book will be extremely helpful and useful.” — 800 CEO READ

About the Author

Nancy Duarte is a skilled CEO, inspired presenter, and gifted educator. Principal of Duarte Design since 1990, Nancy Duarte is a sought-after speaker whose own presentations live up to the expectations established in her books. Those books include slide:ology: The Art and Science of Creating Great Presentations and Resonate: Present Visual Stories that Transform Audiences.

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Product Details

  • Series: Harvard Business Review Guides
  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Harvard Business Review Press; Harvard Business Review Guides edition (October 2, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1422187101
  • ISBN-13: 978-1422187104
  • Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 5 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (78 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #10,704 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

33 of 36 people found the following review helpful By Zen Faulkes on November 5, 2012
Format: Paperback
I'm a massive fanboy of Nancy Duarte. But I was not frothing at the mouth in anticipation of her new book after she revealed that much of it was contained material from her previous two books.

Much of HBR Guide to Persuasive Presentations is an executive summary of Duarte's previous two books. As I went through, I often thought, "There's the presentation structure from Resonate.... ooh, and there are diagram types from Slide:ology." That said, even in sections that cover old ideas, there are new examples. The book is right up to date, using examples from earlier this year.

The last two sections of the book - "Delivery" and "Impact" - are the ones of most interest, because they have the most new material. There's a good section on giving webinars and other remote presentations online. How can you give a presentation that people will listen to... when people are much more likely to check email during that time? There's a discussion on working with an interpreter to deliver a presentation to people who don't speak your language.

Online crowds might be interested in her sections on following-up presentations with social media tools. For example, she encourages speakers to create a hashtag for their presentations - but not "canned" tweets. She cites research that people want to determine what's important, so suggesting tweets to the audience makes it less likely people will use it. There's also good discussion about the pros and cons of monitoring the backchannel during a conference, for example.

HBR Guide to Persuasive Presentations is a very different beast from Slide:ology and Resonate. The size of the book is something you can readily throw in a backpack or purse, rather than the oversized trade paperback of the predecessors. The production is spare.
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Format: Paperback
This is one of the first volumes in a new series of anthologies of articles previously published in Harvard Business Review or, in this instance, a series of tutorials provided by Nancy Duarte in which she shares information, insights, and counsel about how to prepare and then deliver persuasive, high-impact presentations.

As is also true of volumes in other such series, notably HBR Essentials, HBR Must Reads, and HBR Management Tips, HBR Guides offer great value in several ways. Here are two: Cutting-edge thinking from 25-30 sources in a single volume at a price (about $12.50 from Amazon in the bound version) for a fraction of what article reprints would cost.

The material was selected and to help those who read this book to improve their abilities to convince members of an audience why the given ideas matter to them, win over tough crowds, balance emotional and analytical appeal of the given "message," craft memorable phrases and examples, create powerful visuals when needed, strike the right tone, hold an audience's attention, and measure the impact of the presentation.

Duarte organizes her material within seven sections. All of it is of outstanding quality and value. These are among the dozens of passages of special interest to me, each prefaced by "How to...":

o Present Clearly and Concisely to Senior Executives (Pages 11-20)
"Help them make big decisions on a tight schedule."

o Anticipate and Prepare for Resistance (33-36)
"Think through opposing perspectives."

o Create a Solid Structure (65-66)
"Storytelling principles provide a framework."

o Determine the Right Length for Your Presentation (99-102)
"Keep your audience engaged by budgeting your time.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Jon Angelo Gjetting on October 23, 2012
Format: Paperback
HBR Guide to Persuasive Presentations is an practical hands-on book on tips, tricks and methods improving your presentation technique.

For the busy presenter start with to the chapters were you have most potential for improvement. It is a quick read.

Having worked with some of the biggest corporations in the world, designing, crafting and improving their leaders presentations in more than 10 different countries.
I have seen a some the worst imaginable presentations as well as some of the most persuasive, informative and inspiring presentations too. For both the masters and novice presenters Duarte is a trusted Sherpa guiding you towards the peak.

TIP. HBR Guide to Persuasive Presentations is an nice companion to Duartes inspiring book Resonate.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Karen on December 28, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is really the only Duarte you need to buy, if you're looking at her body of work and wondering. No, it doesn't have all the layout stuff that Slideology has, but after reading all her stuff (library and purchased), I feel like this would have been the one to focus on (although it was published AFTER I had read through all her others). I feel it's the most practical, and jettisons some of the fluff you find in her other books. I have highlighted, dog-eared and stickie-taped throughout this whole book.
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Format: Paperback
I grew up in a media centric family and have been an ardent student of communication since my teens. I learned a great deal through osmosis from my father, his advertising buddies, and my grandfather (founder of the Chicago Times, aka Sun-Times). This interest has never flagged, has been a constant companion, and has served me very well throughout my life. I know firsthand that effective communication is the key to influencing others and getting things done.

My interest in the recently released HBR guide to "Persuasive Presentations: Inspire Action, Engage Your Audience, Sell Your Ideas" piqued when I learned that its author, Nancy Duarte, would be the headliner at a Silicon Valley networking event. Nancy, I learned, gained national attention earlier for her oft-quoted book, "slide:ology: the art and science of creating great presentations."

There is no doubt that Nancy is a communications expert. Her guide to "Persuasive Presentations" is impressive, not only for its content, but more importantly, for its usefulness. This 221 page book covers all the basics for a great presentation and has them organized for quick and easy access. "Persuasive Presentations" will serve as an excellent introduction for the novice and as a great reference resource for more experienced communicators. I have ordered copies of "Persuasive Presentations" for each of my direct reports.
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