Want to use a cartoon in your presentation? Here are some things to consider:

  • Humor in a presentation can work, but be careful what sort of jokes you pick. A cartoon that was very funny late last night when you prepared the slides, could not fit the meeting context the next morning after that earlier remark that did not go down well. If you hardwired the wrong cartoon in your slide deck, make sure to click-skip really quickly.
  • Do you have the copyright for the cartoon you just found on Google Image search?
  • Does the cartoon actually add something to the presentation, or is it a business cartoon cliche?
  • Can the audience actually read what is written on the cartoon from the back row?
  • And finally, do you give the audience enough time to read it? As soon as you put a cartoon on the screen, everyone will start squinting to read what Dilbert has to say, and no one is listening anymore what you say at the same time. It might be best to pause your presentation until the first giggles start emerging from the audience. And remember the audience reads the cartoon for the first time, and needs more time than you to understand it. If you have to, you might have to read out the cartoon to the audience.

Cover image by Samantha Lorette on Unsplash

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