PowerPoint Presentations: How to Use This Tool More Effectively

Many of us use PowerPoint to convey a message to both small and large groups. Too often we see "death by powerpoint" in the corporate environment where people don't use it effectively. Get clever when using your PowerPoint ? this article has 20 tips for becoming a more engaging presenter when you use this tool.

Only use a maximum of six (6) words on each line. Too many words is too much clutter and hard for your audience to read.

Only use a maximum of six (6) lines of text on each slide. If you have too many lines of text your audience will spend their time reading your slides and not listening to you speak.

Keep slides clear and uncluttered. Avoid using many graphics or too busy with information - make your message clear.

Use animation where relevant but don't overdo it. This feature can really highlight a key message... or distract your audience if not done correctly.

Use sound effects and movie clips to enhance your presentation. This is a great technique when it works! Be sure to test your presentation in the live environment before you show your audience. Just because it worked at home or your office... doesn't always mean it will work when your audience appears.

Don't talk to your Powerpoint ? remember you have an audience that can read. Don't insult the intelligence of your audience and assume they can't read your slides. Use different words to the ones on your slides.

Keep your slides to a minimum ? people want to hear your message not be distracted by too many slides. They have come to hear a real person, not an electronic presenter. Only use slides to enhance and reinforce your message.

Don't use dark coloured backgrounds - this makes it hard to read from the back of the room. Be aware of the effects of different background colours.

Use large font only as small font is too hard to read from a distance.

Change the font size of words on the same slide to emphasize key words. Don't make every word the same font - if you want to make words stand out, use different colours and fonts.

Don't rely on your PowerPoint ? technology can sometimes fail us ? know your content and also have a hard copy of your presentation with you at all times.

Get creative with photos and images

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