Anyone who has ever made a presentation is aware of all the necessary preparation, including being able to respond to unforeseen circumstances.
A new wrinkle in the presentation universe has arisen with state-of-the-art devices, both handheld and deskbound, which enable users to take part in presentations in ways never envisioned just a quarter-century ago.
It was while he was making a presentation at the American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) Not-For-Profit Industry Conference that Eric Fraint, president and founder of Your Part-Time Controller LLC, examined the methodology of dynamic vs. static presentations; in other words, those that allow the audience to become actively involved with the material presented vs. those that do not.
Fraint said that one is not necessarily better than the other. It depends on the story, the audience and indeterminate external factors. With that in mind, he emphasized the following:
* First, it is necessary to determine the story. Gather all the data. Remember that to an accountant the numbers tell the story that it might be difficult for a lay reader to tease out;
* Computers, tablets and smartphones now make dynamic presentations possible;
* With a static presentation a user or reader is presented with a printed report, or a PDF, which they can view but not change. Static reports must later be updated by the preparer and redistributed if there is new data; and,
* Dynamic presentations let the user or reader drill down, highlight data and focus on items of particular interest.