Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Presentation Tip 2: Change the Order of Your Presentation to Fit Your Audience

From Wilder’s Presentations at: www.wilderpresentations.com

What makes a presenter special, especially when talking to a group that wants to engage instead of just listen?

Suppose you are talking to someone higher up in your company, a new prospect, or managers from a company that has acquired yours. These are audiences who like to ask questions almost as soon as you start. You may not be used to this, so when someone asks you a question you don’t know what slide the information is on. How do you stay in charge rather than fumbling around in the slide sorter trying to find the right slide?

There are two PowerPoint features than can help you out. If you are the visual type, print your slides six to a page and number them. Do File>Print>Handouts>Slides Per Page 6.

Then, when presenting, you can quickly look down and see which slide you want. Just type in the slide number and press enter to show the slide. To go back to where you were, type in that slide’s number and press enter.

Don’t need an image to remember slide content? Then all you need to see is the slide’s title. Use Ellen Finkelstein’s method: First, be sure you have small thumbnails of your slides on the left hand side of your screen. View>Toolbars>Outlining to see the Outlining toolbar. Click the Collapse All button on the outlining toolbar to see slide numbers and titles.

File>Print>(Print What) Outline View to print only the slide numbers and the title of the slide.

What are the pitfalls of this system? If you don't have clear, informative titles, the slide title names won’t mean anything. Don’t put transition phrases or words like summary and background in your titles. Don’t use the same title on more than one slide—what if you have three titles that only say summary?

A great benefit of using the outline view to navigate through your slides is that you will be forced to create titles that actually state the point of the slide - and that may help you reduce the content on each slide to one main point.

For more tips from Ellen Finkelstein, sign up for her informative PowerPoint newsletter at www.ellenfinkelstein.com.

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