CALLED upon to give a presentation at work? Here’s how to hit the right note of business bullshit to drive the company drones wild.
Kick off with an abysmal joke
A forced reference to something in the news is good, or a lame quip about office life like ‘I’ll keep this short because I know you’re all desperate for the pub!’ when you work on an out-of-town business park, the nearest pub is 20 minutes drive away and everyone hates each other.
Give the audience eye-strain
Each PowerPoint slide should be so information-rich it’s impossible to take in if you’re not Data from Star Trek. If you suffer migraines just putting your presentation together, you’re on the right track.
Include a nonsensical business theory
Be sure to mention ‘virtuous cycles’ or ‘SWOT analysis’. Or just make up your own vapid business concept, eg. ‘P.E.A.S theory’ – ‘Profit Equals Advanced Successfulness’. No one will notice.
Make simple things stupidly complicated
Use hideously complicated diagrams, so that a 20-box flow chart in a forest of arrows and jargon words like ‘process’ and ‘feedback’ actually just represents Iain talking to Shelley about whether to order more Post-it notes.
Read out every number
Presenting financial information? Read out all the figures. Human beings love to hear a long series of unmemorable numbers and will gladly miss lunch for it.
Use a convoluted metaphor
Make your point with a metaphor about marketing’s ROI being like ‘trekking through the jungle’. Forget what the rope bridge represents. Get hopelessly confused about who the crocodiles and lions are. Make everyone deeply uncomfortable with your clip art of cannibals.