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Presentation Zen: Simple Ideas on Presentation Design and Delivery (Voices That Matter) [Kindle Edition]

Garr Reynolds
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (235 customer reviews)

Digital List Price: $23.99 What's this?
Kindle Price: $9.80
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There is a newer edition of this item:
Presentation Zen: Simple Ideas on Presentation Design and Delivery (2nd Edition) (Voices That Matter) Presentation Zen: Simple Ideas on Presentation Design and Delivery (2nd Edition) (Voices That Matter) 4.4 out of 5 stars (110)
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Book Description

This is the eBook version of the printed book.

FOREWORD BY GUY KAWASAKI

Presentation designer and internationally acclaimed communications expert Garr Reynolds, shares his experience in a provocative mix of illumination, inspiration, education, and guidance that will change the way you think about making presentations with PowerPoint or Keynote. Presentation Zen challenges the conventional wisdom of making "slide presentations" in today’s world and encourages you to think differently and more creatively about the preparation, design, and delivery of your presentations. Garr shares lessons and perspectives that draw upon practical advice from the fields of communication and business. Combining solid principles of design with the tenets of Zen simplicity, this book will help you along the path to simpler, more effective presentations.




Editorial Reviews

Review

"Please don't buy this book! Once people start making better presentations, mine won’t look so good. (But if you truly want to learn what works and how to do it right, Garr is the man to learn from.)"
Seth Godin
Speaker and Blogger
Author, Meatball Sundae

"Garr is a beacon of hope for frustrated audiences everywhere. His design philosophy and fundamental principles bring life to messages and can invigorate careers. His principles of simplicity are as much a journey of the soul as they are restraint of the mouse."
Nancy Duarte
CEO, Duarte Design

"Presentation Zen is just fantastic. Best of all it's not another recipe book about “how to make slides” — this is about re-imagining how your entire presentation will work together as a persuasive and integrated show, from conception through delivery. Awesome."
Merlin Mann
43folders.com

About the Author

Garr Reynolds is an internationally acclaimed communications expert, and the creator of the most popular Web site on presentation design and delivery on the net: presentationzen.com. A soughtafter speaker and consultant, his clients include many in the Fortune 500. A writer, designer, and musician, he currently holds the position of Associate Professor of Management at Kansai Gaidai University in Japan. Garr is a former corporate trainer for Sumitomo Electric, and once worked in Cupertino, California as the Manager for Worldwide User Group Relations at Apple, Inc. A longtime student of the Zen arts and resident of Japan, he currently lives in Osaka where he is Director of Design Matters Japan.

Product Details

  • File Size: 3029 KB
  • Print Length: 229 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Up to 5 simultaneous devices, per publisher limits
  • Publisher: New Riders; 1 edition (April 15, 2009)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B000WJSCZE
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #122,549 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
298 of 307 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This should be required reading for all presenters... January 1, 2008
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is everything that I want my presentations to be when I'm up on stage... Presentation Zen: Simple Ideas on Presentation Design and Delivery by Garr Reynolds. This will make you rethink everything you've known (and likely done) about how a presentation should be designed.

Contents:
Introduction: Presenting in Today's World
Preparation: Creativity, Limitations, and Constraints; Planning Analog; Crafting the Story
Design: Simplicity - Why It Matters; Presentation Design - Principles and Techniques; Sample Slides
Delivery: The Art of Being Completely Present; Connecting With an Audience
The Next Step: The Journey Begins
Photo Credits; Index

There's so much good stuff here that it's hard to figure out where to begin. Reynolds advocates for a departure from the ordinary style of presentation involving PowerPoint. You've all sat through those (or given them)... Pages of slides, chock full of text, gratuitous use of special effects, etc. Presentation Zen is more about simplicity and storytelling. Your slides should support *you*, the speaker. If someone can get all the information from your slides, why do they need you? Your slides should not overwhelm the audience, but should draw their attention to the point that you are making in your talk. Couple this approach with the ability to tell stories rather than recite facts, and you can put together presentations that will be appreciated, remembered, and best of all, acted upon.

He also gets into how best to design appealing and arresting slides. Reynolds uses sites like iStockPhoto to avoid the overused and cheesy clipart that comes part and parcel with PowerPoint.
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161 of 168 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Useful but disappointing February 26, 2008
Format:Paperback
I found Presentation Zen disappointing. It seemed to violate in writing style many of the principles it seeks to correct in slide design, reading more like a meandering conversation over drinks than a well-laid-out, step-by-step primer. For example, the book was frustratingly repetitive, with even the simplest points restated through multiple chapters (really, how many times do you have to suggest using post-it notes?). Some central points came and went quietly in sidebars, and others completely lacked explanation or justification (i.e. the rule for using six words maximum per slide). Every time I thought I was about to discover a new and enlightening concrete principle of visual design with valid reasoning, it seemed the point from the previous chapter was repeated instead. Moreover, exceptions or alternate approaches also weren't considered, such as times when using a whopping seven words on a slide might be useful, or when more complex slide builds and transitions could help an audience grasp a concept. In addition, many of the points made in the book, such as the value of "taking risks," seemed obvious and trite.

Overall, like many tedious slide shows I've endured, I felt the book could have been half as long and made its points with the same clarity, and would have showed more respect for the reader's time. To its credit, it does offer some useful ideas on slide design, and some excellent graphic examples. It's also visually appealing, with beautiful slide reprints, tons of "good" and "bad" examples to learn from, and cleanly-designed pages. Still, I'd trade the appealing design for tighter, more solid, more useful content.
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323 of 372 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Lacking Gravitas January 18, 2008
Format:Paperback
Like many others, I have grown (very) weary of the so-called "death by PowerPoint" culture which saturates the IT sector in which I work. I would gladly substitute every minute of mindless suffering sitting through too many presentations by sales persons and various "engineers" with 150% more time at the Dentist's. Much as I hate visiting my Dentist, at least I'll be healthier afterwards.

Also like many others, I wager, I found out about Presentation Zen the book from Presentation Zen the blog of which I am a fan. I am sorry to report that I am a bigger fan of the blog than I am of the book. First, the good.

The book itself is pleasing with good binding and great color. It's easy to read with clear type and an attractive layout. Chapter heading and sub-headings are clear and the flow of the book's content is harmonious. The reader can tell that good quality work went into the typesetting and publishing--kudos to New Riders.

How about content? Well here a few shortcomings appear and although not enough to dismiss the book outright are enough to cause me wonder. At 230 odd pages, the first impression as I flipped through is how "light" it is, literally and metaphorically. There is a surprising amount of white space and while that's understandable from a design perspective, from a reader's however, it falls short of fulfilling the promise of content a similarly priced book should deliver on.

Focused reading reveals surprisingly little that is original. I stopped counting at 12 the number of books by other authors referenced and quoted from; and while that isn't a crime per se, it's certainly a shortcoming.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars great tips
great tips; and easy to read
Published 9 days ago by romantic
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing book
One of the greatest books I've ever read. Total game changer.
Published 1 month ago by Beachwood
5.0 out of 5 stars Great read!
This is a great book and will take your presentations to the next level, unlocking greater value from meetings. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Andy Rodgers
5.0 out of 5 stars Changing my Presentation Style
What I learned , reinforced by a recent keynote speech I attended, is simpler is smarter!. Presentation Zen stresses this idea and the reasoning behind it. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Jack R. Nicholas, Jr., P.E., CMRP
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book
Wonderful succinct tips for presenting. More up to date conceptual ideas which add a flair to presenting to anybody looking to enhance their style.
Published 3 months ago by Susan O. Bookshar
5.0 out of 5 stars A must for presenters
This is a go-to book for me whenever I'm planning a presentation. The down to earth writing is packed with helpful tips and reminders.
Published 3 months ago by Margo Bates
2.0 out of 5 stars The content
This book tells how to structure, deliver, and design your presentation.
Reading through this book, it seems that his opinion about presentation leans toward simplicity of... Read more
Published 3 months ago by Yasumitsu Tanaka
5.0 out of 5 stars If You Speak in Front of Audiences, BUY THIS!
Garr Reynold's advice has changed the way I present. I own a speakers bureau and have seen it all. The ZEN method of presentation is 180* from what most presenters use. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Robin Jay
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book for instructional designers
This has been a very helpful book for me, and I've shared it several times with my team of instructional designers.
Published 6 months ago by Amy
5.0 out of 5 stars FABULOUS book!
I'm so glad I got this book! This has opened up a whole new world for me. I was dreading putting together a PowerPoint. Feeling lost and tentative. Read more
Published 7 months ago by Udana Power
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More About the Author

Garr Reynolds is an internationally acclaimed communications expert, and the creator of the most popular Web site on presentation design and delivery on the net: presentationzen.com. A soughtafter speaker and consultant, his clients include many in the Fortune 500. A writer, designer, and musician, he currently holds the position of Associate Professor of Management at Kansai Gaidai University in Japan. Garr is a former corporate trainer for Sumitomo Electric, and once worked in Cupertino, California as the Manager for Worldwide User Group Relations at Apple, Inc. A longtime student of the Zen arts and resident of Japan, he currently lives in Osaka where he is Director of Design Matters Japan.



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