‘Slideument’ is Garr Reynolds’ term for the printout of slides that is often given to the audience after a presentation. It’s a deliberately horrible word, reflecting the fact that the slideument is a compromise giving the worst of both worlds: because they know the slides will be printed, many presenters cram them with text, which makes them terrible presentation aids; but there isn’t room to explain the ideas properly, so they make an inadequate handout.
Here’s what a slideument of this Presentation Skills workshop would look like:
Garr’s solution is to create a separate document with a written summary of the presentation, illustrated with some of the most important images from the slides. Of course, this involves more work – but doing an outstanding job usually involves more work. Your audience will thank you for it – and keep hold of the document (which should of course include your website address and contact details…).
Here’s a snapshot of a pdf document I created for a presentation last year:
Another benefit of writing out your presentation is that it helps you clarify your thinking and correct any weak points in your argument. I would never read a text to an audience, but once I’ve laid my ideas out in writing I find it much easier to talk fluently about them when I’m on stage.