Learning from Don Draper: Presentation Skills

Saturday, May 6, 2017 | 10:45 a.m. - noon
CM | 1.25
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Don Draper was a master of the pitch—from selling Lucky cigarettes to Kodak’s carousel. In today’s fast-paced, media-centric world, there is greater scrutiny on how urban planners communicate about their projects to the public, whether at an environmental scoping meeting or via social media. With the rise of hand-held technology, social media followers, and graphic design programs, the public is accustomed to more sophisticated communication, and thus has higher expectations for conversations between public agencies and community members.

Strategic communication  is rarely a key focus of urban planning education programs, nor it is always required as part of  job training. However, communication strategies and presentation skills are a critical part of the daily practice of urban planning and may be the single most important asset to develop for career advancement. This session will provide lessons learned from the field of advertising to strengthen communication and presentation skills through the use of storytelling, graphics, science, humor, and empathy. Advertisers and marketers have spent years researching how the human brain receives and stores information. This session will shed light on the science behind 'memorable” messaging and “sticky” ideas so planners can structure their presentations to be engaging, digestable, and well received.


Georgia Sheridan , AICP , LA County Metro , Los Angeles , CA (see bio)
Shannon Davis , Los Angeles , CA (see bio)