Beyond Boring

How To Use A Flipchart For Big Ideas

When you get ready to give a presentation, consider using a little flipchart to communicate big ideas.

It's a humble thing. The flipchart. It might seem as an executive, it's beneath you to use this low-tech tool. It might seem a little old-fashioned or even out of date. But it's not.

A flipchart is your trusty friend. Instead of leaving it to gather dust in the corner, pull your flipchart into the center of the conference room.

Flip ChartMany of my clients use flipcharts to emphasize key strategies. They use it to break the ice with teams and direct reports. And they find that it is a fast way to simplify complex ideas.

Use it to capture attention, emphasize key points, and get people to take action. With these 3 tips, it's easy and fast to build flipcharts into your executive presentation toolkit.

Tip 1. Capture Attention

Start strong with a colorful flipchart. Write a big number in bright colors. Put a bold scary fact on the chart. Highlight in yellow. The key here is to write big. Big letters. Big numbers.

Hint: walk out of the room. As you walk in, what do you notice? If it's the colorful flipchart, you're ready to go.

Tip 2: Emphasize Key Points

Use your flipchart to write and draw key points throughout your presentation. Go to the same chart and emphasize importance. Using the same chart, you can underline items, circle items, highlight in yellow, and put big red check marks next to bullet points.

Practice drawing simple additions while you speak. Draw these marks to it as you deliver your talk. You'll find this is fast and easy – plus you'll look very professional.

And the good news is: not much drawing ability required.

Tip 3: Ignite Action
One of the most powerful points of every leadership presentation is igniting action.

And the fastest way to do this is with a flipchart.

Pick the most important thing you want your audience to do with the information you are presenting. Write this BIG on your chart.

If you want to emphasize this even more, break action into no more than 3 parts. Offer 3 fast and easy steps to take action. Write these out. Put big red check marks next to each one. This breaks down one important action into three mini-steps.

This simplification is inviting and engaging for your audience. Participants will see that it's not so difficult to take the action that is required.

Encourage your participants to make a copy of this chart. The more you can show, tell, and encourage your audience to take action, the more results you'll see.

Take a moment right now. Jot down your ideas to use flipcharts for your next leadership presentation.

1. How will you capture attention?
2. How will you emphasize key points?
3. How will you inspire action?

Update your flipchart skills to win results in your presentations. With a small investment in your executive education, you can expect a dramatic improvement. For instant video access to learn how this works, visit