PowerPoint is a powerful tool allowing you to make your point in an interesting and dramatic way. Because it is frequently used poorly, we tend to hate talks with PowerPoint. Here are suggestions to help you increase your success with PowerPoint.
- Outline your presentation before you open PowerPoint.
- Use arrows, circles and highlighting to help key elements stand so you don’t need a laser pointer.
- Remember that you are the main attraction, not your slides.
- Develop your talk to have a clear message that can be delivered without PowerPoint.
- Multiple slides should be used to explain a complex topic.
- Animations and special effects should be used sparingly.
- Use different backgrounds to keep your show interesting, but make sure they are not distracting.
- Put a black slide at the beginning and end of your show – this eliminates that embarrassing slide that says “end of show -click to exit.”
- Include text sparingly: A picture is worth 1000 words.
- Use bullet points instead of paragraphs with a limit of 5 words per line.
- Graphs should show trends, not complete data sets.
- On complex slides, use the animation feature to allow information to display one at a time.
- Start your talk with the projector off (or the black slide projected) and room lights on to give the audience time to know and like you.
- Stand in front of the room facing your audience the entire time.
- Turn your laptop so it faces you, not the audience. This allows you to see what is projected while looking at the audience.
- Allow your audience time to understand your slide (or read the text) before you begin speaking
- End your talk with the lights on. Project the final slide, turn on the lights and conclude your talk. This reestablishes you with your audience.
- Have a backup plan in case you have technical problems.
- Ask some one to handle the lights for you.
- Scope out the room early and set it up so it works for you..
- Arrive early to set up and test your equipment.
- Set your show up before you are introduced
- Practice using the remote control (and always use a remote control).
- Sit in the last row of seats and look at your slides. If you can’t see them clearly, your audience won’t either.
You can build a sturdy house with a hammer or you can build something that will fall apart quickly. It is not the hammer that makes the difference, but how it is used.
iSpeakEASY offers workshops and individualized coaching to help you design and deliver effective PowerPoint presentations. CLICK HERE for information.
© 2011- All rights reserved. -This speaking tip is one in a series provided to you by iSpeakEASY. We help people profit from their words.