Thursday, May 21, 2009

Case Studies vs. Practice Talks

Case study talks are almost always boring. The premise behind them I guess is that we, the talk attendees, are looking for validation that the tools we use are great and that they can be effective in places where other tools might not be. But I don't look for validation from my talks - I look for information I can use, or if nothing else, a good story I can take home.

Case study talks are often light on both.

Compare this to a Practice talk. By that I mean a talk about a practice - a particular, detailed set of tools or methods that someone uses every day at their job and helps them be effective. In my experience, these presentations tend to be very well received with a good set of questions. It's likely that the talk is going to include some unfamiliar piece of technology but you can be sure that any questions about details will be answered with "In my experience..."

Of course many talks are practice talks in disguise. But "in my experience" the presenter will do well to let as much of the practical information they have about the topic at hand to bleed through as makes sense given time and the talk level. That will help their introductory talk or case study transition into something more powerful.

No comments:

Post a Comment