Dear Great Boss,
If you’re reading this note that means that I’ve died, moved on or won the lottery. So it’s time for me to finally share a secret with you. Not sure it this qualifies as a big secret because everyone else knows this except you.
This might come as a big surprise to you. I and the rest of the staff have done our best to protect you from the brutal truth. Apparently our conspiracy of silence and sycophancy has succeeded.
You might believe that you are a great presenter. Naturally whenever you asked for comments or feedback on your presentations we dutifully responded with “You are a great speaker.” “That was a great presentation” And the greater sycophants added “You’re a great boss”.
Technically, those weren’t lies because great does not mean good or even better than good. For instance, there was the Great War, the Great Depression and the Great Plague. Your presentations were in this category of great.
You might want to sit down while reading this. Your presentations suck. If fact they suck - greatly.
That could be a great surprise to you.
You might wonder, “Was it one bad presentation or one little thing?” No.
Take your pick:
- Your jokes stink.
- Your slides were boring and confusing.
- It was annoying when you read your text slides to us.
- The clichés you tossed around were unoriginal and uninspiring.
- Your words were often insulting and condescending.
- Your attempts at rapport felt insincere and manipulative.
- You didn’t speak with us. You spoke at us.
Why do I tell you this?
Because these repeated mistakes cost the company money, created stress for people and wasted resources.
I found traits to respect and appreciate about you. I hope that you might now respect and appreciate these truths that I offer you about your presentations.
I hope that you might stop basking in the glory of those great presentation reviews and start delivering more effective presentations.
PS: Don’t expect to receive honest and constructive feedback about your presentations from the staff because they still work for you and will praise you as great.
PPS: If you think you’re great, check out the horrors of the Great War, Great Depression and Great Plague.
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