Wednesday, 1 September 2010

Executive training

Every executive is subjected to in-house training. Not official training where you have to pay £2,000 to listen to experts in your field give sound advice and set exercises, but bad media luvvie training. This type of training is where a friend of the company comes in for a free lunch and an opportunity to feel important and spout BS for a few hours.

With this open mindedness laid out for all to see, I have compiled an account of what happened:

A man with 'cool glasses' messy hair, a denim blue shirt and dark blue jeans turned up to the office. He described himself as a freelance media hyphenate, pitch doctor and classicist.

Mr Hyphenate gave a presentation about presentations using a Macbook with a screen saver which said something to the effect of 'I love my Macbook, hands off!' He then proceeded to present in PowerPoint complete with awful fonts, terrible sounds, and bad clip art. He also professed that he couldn't be bothered to put and videos in.

The presentation was called 'Telling tales, making meaning - a presentation about story telling'. This was to be the beginning of much needless alliteration. Some phrases that Mr. Hyphenate used in the next 3 hours:

  • Insightment
  • 'Communication is the transfer of emotion' - one of many, many, many quotes attributed to no-one in particular with a very vague meaning at best.
  • num63rs
  • Are you a radiator or a drain?
  • Arithmocracy
  • 'Permission to speculate' - he has a T-shirt with this slogan written on. Really.
  • Editorialising 
  • 'I could talk about Homer for hours, but I won't' - well that's a relief, I might have learned something.
  • Semavores - Humans who devour meaning
  • Meaning magnets
  • DRIP culture - Data Rich Insight Poor
  • Data provocateurs
  • 'Attitudes not Platitudes'
  • Informed Imagination
  • 'Be led by the thread' - In reference to the 'Golden thread' that should run through every presentation.
I've lost count of the number of inverted commas I've used. I don't even know if I'm being sarcastic anymore.

By slide 165 of the Godforsaken PowerPoint 'deck' that we were subjected to, Mr. Hyphenate was onto his piece about keeping a presentation short and succinct. Shortly after this, staving off boredom shutdown (apart from taking copious notes), was drawing a picture of a caged ape trying unsuccessfully to blow his brains out with a cap gun bought from Poundland.

The final thought of the afternoon was to 'Make your words like harpoons - easy to go in hard to get out'. The afternoon of 31st August 2010 has detrimentally affected my mental state, much like a whale left brain-damaged by the poor aim of Japanese fishermen. In this instance, the Japanese fisherman wasn't Japanese, and was wearing a denim shirt.

My colleagues and I had to endure so many acronyms yesterday that I now communicate in abbreviated code. So Hyphenate this Mr. Hyphenate.

Neurological Evaluation Verifying Existing Retards
Agonising Grunts Accepting Injury or Near death
That is all.