How to visualize Numbers in Presentations

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Visualizing numbers in presentations or public speaking can be quite challenging. The major problem is that we are usually presenting numbers that we are very familiar with, but our audience usually isn’t. Furthermore, this gets more complicated, because the perception of numbers is usually quite off. Basically, every number beyond 1 million is usually perceived in a wrong way: “Despite their importance in public discourse, numbers in the range of 1 million to 1 trillion are notoriously difficult to understand.” [source]

In the following video I explain how to counter these problems with different approaches. The general approach is that you make your numbers relatable. This means you choose numbers your audience knows very well. Additionally, I talk about what kind of different visualization techniques you can use ranging from the formal charts, graphs and areas to the more creative approach of using symbols or even simple pictures that carry a meaning. Remember, numbers usually don’t carry any meaning with them, thus the audience will forget them quickly. It is your job as speaker and presenter to attach a certain meaning to them that makes them sticky for the audience.

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