From Research Lab Critiques to Startup Pitches: My Slide Story

Starting my own business was a dream I’d always nurtured. But never did I think that my time at a government R&D agency would play such a pivotal role in my startup journey, and all because of…presentation slides!

Slide Struggles: The R&D Chronicles

Imagine this: I’m in a room filled with experienced scientists and officials, excitedly presenting the results of weeks of research. Yet, before I could even delve into the details, I’d be halted – usually by the second slide. My superior, with a puzzled expression, would barrage me with questions. Sometimes, they’d jump the gun, inquiring about points I was just about to cover in the subsequent slides.

Now, don’t get me wrong – feedback is a gift. But the cosmetic criticisms were particularly stinging. “Why this color?”, “The graphic is too amateur!”, “Is this slide just a photo?”, or “Feels like I’m reading an essay here!” It felt like navigating a tightrope walk where balance was elusive. Too much text, and it’s an overload. Just graphics, and it’s too vague.

The Startup Slide Revolution

Fast forward to my entrepreneurial journey, and presenting became second nature. Whether I was pitching to potential investors, engaging with customers, or sharing insights at lectures, the slide deck was my trusty sidekick. And here’s the twist in the tale: the relentless feedback from my R&D days turned into the treasure trove I didn’t know I needed.

Those seemingly endless rounds of critiques transformed into lessons. The balance of graphics and text, the narrative flow, the choice of colors – everything started making sense. It was as if the past was training me for these very moments.

I’ve now come to a point where I passionately design my own slides. Why? Because they’re an extension of my thoughts, my story, my vision. And who better to tell that story than me?

Conclusion: Embracing The Journey

Today, when I look back, I smile at the irony. What once was a source of frustration has now become a skill I deeply value. The critiques, the questions, the interruptions – they were all shaping a more resilient and adept version of me.

To all budding entrepreneurs out there: Embrace every feedback, every critique. You never know where those lessons will come in handy. After all, in the words of Steve Jobs, you can only connect the dots looking backward. My slides, my story. And what a journey it’s been!

Author: Mazlan Abbas

IOT Evangelist

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