Would You Have a Go at This or Let It Be?

Posted on Nov 21

Imagine for a moment that I give you a box.

It measures 30cm x 20cm x 5cm.

It is brightly coloured and has a lid which at the moment is closed.

You go ahead and open it to find it contains lots of jigsaw pieces – and nothing else.

There is no picture of what the jigsaw is about, you can’t tell if all the pieces are there or if there are any missing because you don’t know how many there should be.

What do you do next?

Here are two possible scenarios…

1) you may decide to go no further because you can’t see any point.

You don’t have enough information to proceed and just leave it at that. You quickly lose interest.

2) you may decide to tip out all of the pieces and have a go anyway……

Which would be your preference?

Whichever you decide to do shows something about how your brain prefers to process information.

One is not better or worse than the other- just different.

If (1) is more like you

then you need to have the Big Picture to go ahead.

You need to know where it is going before you’ll even begin to engage with it.

You need to see how all the bits fit together first.

If (2) is more like you

then you crave the detail.

You like to receive information a bit at a time and don’t need the Big Picture. Sometimes that just gets in the way.

So what?

This is an example of one of 19 filters we use, called meta-programmes, to filter  incoming information.

It’s called  Abstract /Specific or Big Picture/ Detail.

We tend to provide information to others in the way that we like to process it…

If you are a detail person this will come more naturally to you and you will automatically provide your audience with lots and lots of detailed information

but this will switch off the Big Picture people in your audience and they won’t be listening to you because you are not connecting with them.

And vice versa.

If you are a Big Picture person you will automatically talk about the overall, overarching ideas without talking about the details which means that the detail people won’t engage with you.

So either way you lose part of your audience.

If you want to be outstanding when you present then you have to be aware of this and the implications it has for how you present your information.

If you want to get through to all of your audience then as the speaker you need to provide both The Big Picture of what your presentation is going to be about followed by the detailed information.

So the key is….

Big Picture first

Details second

and then you will connect and engage with all of your audience in a way most people don’t know how to do!

Until next time,

with best wishes for your success,


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Posted on Nov 21 in Business Presentations, Communication skills, Presentation Skills, Public Speaking, Sales

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