I’ve seen a few bad presentations (PowerPoint) recently. Most PowerPoint presentations ARE bad.
If you must use PowerPoint please:
Start building the presentation with an objective. This needs to be a real objective that can be stated in one sentence. If you can’t get that far, you’re already dead in the water. Don’t fear clarity. If the objective is to get a sale or gain more business, make sure every slide is headed toward that goal. Don’t EVER bother a client with a presentation about how cool your company is.
NEVER take anyone’s time unless you have something remarkable to say. If you want a sale, make sure you include—and build around—a remarkable reason for them to act. If your presentation is a progress report or similar, include something remarkable.
Remarkable does not mean add a bunch of dancing baloney. PowerPoint animation is cute, not remarkable. Too much animation and your presentation leaves cute and goes directly to annoying.
Say it with as few words as possible. You do the talking, not PowerPoint.
Clearly state your objective in one sentence. (The words may be slightly different from your planned objective.)
Close. If you are there to get business, ask for it. If you are there to sell an idea, ask for consent. If you are there to present the annual report, end with a remarkable statement and THEN ask for approval. Informational presentations need a close.
Shameless Promotion: Have an unremarkable presentation? I can work with you to make it remarkable.
Chris Reich, Autor of TeachU’s Business Talk Blog