At first glance, Garr Reynolds’ new book, The naked presenter, is another entry in the “how to deliver presentation” genre. But as I read through the book, I found myself making notes. The notes were not about how to improve my presentations, but about how I approach change management.
As an organization development practitioner, I spend my time working with change management. This morphs through training – to teach something new, facilitation – where knowledge and ideas are exchanged, and, communication – designed to inform, motivate, and effect behavior change. Reynolds writes about all of this and more. He integrates information from interpersonal neurobiology, personal observation of his surroundings, and jazz musicians.
He does write about making effective presentations and improving public speaking skills. But the most important idea I encountered in the book is that “lessons are everywhere.” It is up to each of us to inquire into everyone and everything we encounter, asking how it impacts who we are and what old and new lessons we take away.
Each of us has many opportunities to connect with others. Knowing who we are and what matters is the foundation. Knowing why we are speaking, along with how and what we are communicating, allows us to build and effect change.
If you like to walk around the neighborhood block backward, seeing the roof lines and landscape from a new perspective, I recommend reading this book and watching for patterns that reach far beyond presentation design.