Perfect your Presentation with a Rubber Duck

Computer Programmers write hundreds of lines of code with complex logical equations. When there’s an error in the code, it can be very difficult to track down the error. One missing parenthesis can turn a complex functioning program into a blank screen. Enter the Rubber Ducky.

The Pragmatic Programmer suggested a method of debugging code, now called “rubber duck debugging,” or “talking using an inanimate object to force programmers to explain their own code. Often times, the vocalization helps identify problems that you might skip over when reviewing the presentation in your head.

How might this help you prepare for your next big presentation?

Explain your methodology

Does your sequence make sense? Do your topics flow naturally into one another? What might’ve come naturally when you first sketched out your outline, can be affected by the materials that you used to flesh it out.

Find your verbal stumbling blocks

Guinness lists “The sixth sick sheik’s sixth sheep’s sick” as the world’s most difficult tongue twister, but you might not realize it while reading through the page. Are your talking points painting you into a corner? Now’s the time to identify particular problem areas in your presentation and rework or reword them accordingly. If you’re having trouble explaining a slide, fix it now, while you have time to make layout changes.

Predict questions

Do certain questions arise naturally during your presentation? Looking at your presentation through the eyes of your audience (or a toy waterfowl) will help you see . If the question is preoccupying enough, maybe you should address it upfront to avoid distractions. If not, remind the audience upfront that a Q&A will follow.

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