A BSE-30 company (one that’s been awarded by the ICAI for excellence in financial reporting), put out this slide in a recent analyst presentation:

A slide which follows the typical “who-knows-what-could-be-important-so-let’s-show-everything” approach. A slide which has 16 rows and 6 columns – 96 data sets in all. Good luck if you expect the audience to remember even one of them.

You might say, ‘tables are tough to read, a chart is better’ and use the default charting application to come up with this:

That’s not much better is it? Multiple colours, bars, numbers and lines everywhere – what do you want the reader to focus on here?

Even if you simplify and just show the revenue and EBITDA numbers, as below…

… it still retains multiple elements of ‘clutter’. Clutter is any element which exists on the slide but doesn’t add any/adequate value. Let’s identify some of these elements:

Perhaps if we clean up the chart, it’ll become easier to comprehend:

That does look better. But it is still just a couple of data points. What is the overall story we want to tell here? Let’s go back to the P&L table:

 

Let’s examine some of the changes made in this slide:

So that’s our first example of a ‘slide makeover’ by Story Rules – where we will periodically look at actual corporate slides/presentations (taken from the public domain) and examine how we could improve them.

If you found this example useful, please subscribe for email updates of new blog posts from Story Rules.

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Featured image credit: Pixabay 

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