What is the best way to project your image?

clipart jpegwiz/Shuttestock

Projecting your image means projecting your inner sole. Sometimes this is enjoyable at other times the idea that you need to stand up and speak is onerous and full of fear. For others it is an opportunity to promote their business and show their ability. Out comes the PowerPoint package, time to show our image in full technicolour. But…

…Is it really easy or done well?

Once behind that podium we feel in command and flick through each slide with gay abandonment. Slide after slide has heavy text and the odd image of us on holiday show everyone that we travel widely, or have a fast car or that we are good at sports. Those bullet points soon come into play and the audience glazes over, nods off or concentrates on their Smart phones. Small screens glare as flashes light up across the phalanx of seats in the auditorium. And on he drones…

What is the best slide in the deck?

digital projectors have replaced the old 35mm projectors

Strangely enough it is the non-slide, the one I call ‘black’ that is the most important, let alone the best slide in your deck. As British actor Mark Strong says at the start of the introduction to Vue cinemas’ big screen attractions –

…makes you notice doesn’t it. A little bit of darkness. Refines the senses. Focuses the mind…

An old adage

Suddenly the voice becomes the important tool, not the PowerPoint slide. It is the voice that is remembered, not the slide. It’s not all bad though because a good PowerPoint presentation can enhance any talk. Not least because we are driven by that old adage,

Hearing something a hundred times isn’t better than seeing it once.’  This turned into ‘a picture paints a thousand words.

Projecting your image through the combination of talk and use of pictures is critical to good presenting. You can go without images, but in our modern world imagery is important.  

And so for the zillionth time I reflected on the talks I attended, let alone had given myself. Some were truly bad despite all efforts and I include my own as examples. The translated talk I gave in Helsinki in Finnish, the joke I cracked that fell flat to a group of rheumatologists, the first talk I ever gave and wanted to hide in the toilet, before it started! Then there was Jim who failed to understand the concept of time and technology. The CNN reporter who was less interesting than his audience at question time. We all have memories.

Forty years experience. Two years researching

I decided to put 40 years of my own experience together to help novices get the best out of projecting their own images and consider with the help of those wiser than me how best to speak with a remote control in hand. After two years, my book Projecting Your Image. Conferences to Village Halls has launched both as an e-book and a paperback version. Knowing that Amazon publishing charges three times for colour than black and white, the paperback (in B&W) is down to a respectable £6.99 and the e-book £1.99.

This book does not promise to make you a brilliant speaker but if you avoid all those common mistakes  and know the rules, it is doubtful you will make a bad job. Anyway to my readers on Social Media it is available for all budding speakers, from Amazon today.


And now a companion book cum-manual designed around public speaking

Look out for the companion book ‘Thinking as We Build. PowerPoint is not just a slide package.’ to be launched March 2020 in paperback only.

Out from Busypencilcase Communications through Amazon books in March as a paperback companion to Projecting Your Image.


David Tollafield was a Consultant foot specialist as well as a Senior University Lecturer with over forty years of experience. Now retired he concentrates on writing, foothealth journalism, reflecting and public speaking. During 2020 he will be speaking about the art of the ‘talk’ with PowerPoint in mind. If you wish to engage him to speak contact Rob at Busypencilcase_rcb@yahoo.co.uk


Published by Busypencilcase Communications Ltd and printed and distributed by Amazon (KDP) Kindle Digital Publishing. January 2020

Price: e-book £1.99 Paperback £6.99+PP

Updated 14th February 2020