Monday, 23 December 2013

Successful PowerPoint Presentations

Death by PowerPoint is a slow, painful way to go, and we’ve all been a victim of it at some point. I certainly have, on far too many occasions!

Giving an interesting PowerPoint presentation, however, is surprisingly straightforward, so long as you follow a few basic guidelines. The problem with many presentations is that they can confuse your audience, stifling opportunities for discussion and boring them senseless. Definitely not the things you set out to achieve.

Firstly, let’s identify reasons for using PowerPoint: 

  • To take attention off you
  • You can email slides to those who can’t attend
  • To remind you what to say next
  • To maintain some sort of structure
  • To add a level of professionalism to your event
  • It can capture and enhance the attention and interest of your audience
  • It can help emphasise specific points
  • You can use images (even video) to better explain things

But let’s not forget about the disadvantages:

  • It can make you look amateurish if you’re unfamiliar with the required technology
  • It can be less effective if a lot of detail is required
  • It can distract from you if too much is happening on the presentation
  • A poor presentation can prohibit discussion
  • It can lead to you speaking to your PowerPoint, and not to your audience

Here are a few useful hints and delivery tips:

  • Use a wireless remote control to free yourself from the laptop
  • Don’t turn your back on the audience
  • Gesture towards the screen when you want to draw attention to it
  • Stand still when you want your audience to focus attention on screen
  • Move about to make your audience focus on you
  • Make your presentation interactive by including questions or exercises
  • Project your voice and show enthusiasm
  • Give your audience more attention than the screen
  • Know your subject
  • Be prepared for questions
  • Rehearse your presentation

For more advice on PowerPoint presentations, visit our website. We offer a Successful PowerPoint Presentations workshop that is available from as little as £350 per group.

Visit Gary Bedingfield Training website at