Sat in on a C-level strategy session today. Presenter gave a presentation that usually is on the road, but was being given for a different (internal) audience to make sure folks knew what message the field was getting. The presentation has been getting rave reviews on the circuit.The presenter’s method is to use a whiteboard to draw a diagram to pigeonhole markets and show the intersection and connections between them and the product line. No PowerPoint! So far so good. But a whiteboard presentation given from a stage in front of an audience in a 400-seat auditorium isn’t readable. The closest audience member was perhaps 25 feet away. People can’t connect to things they can’t see. To make matters worse, evidently the markers weren’t tested, for they didn’t work, and the readability dropped even more. What would have gone over great in a board room of a dozen was almost completely ineffective as a message medium when sized up.The principle is that not every communications method will work for every audience. Rhetorical questions also don’t work as well as the audience size ramps up.

Make sure your methods will work for the style and form of your audience.

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