In order to succeed in the business world, you must learn to deliver powerful and effective business presentations. It’s about making an impact that influences your audience, whether you are an entrepreneur pitching investors, a small business owner pitching a product to a retailer or potential customer, a startup presenting a new initiative, or a manager asking for budget or staffing resources.
Here are five principles you must use to create powerful PowerPoint presentations:
1. It’s About You, Not the Slides
Whatever the purpose is for the presentation, it’s about your purpose or message, what you know, your passion, and your delivery. It’s not about what’s written on the slides.
Switch the focus of attention from the slides themselves and onto your message, your expertise, and your grasp of the content — not to mention your ultimate goal for the presentation itself.
You won’t be able to do that if you let the slides themselves dominate the presentation, if you read from your slides, or have so much text on your slides that the audience themselves read the slides instead of listening to you.
2. Let Your PowerPoint Slides Support Your Point, Not Make It
I’ve seen people, including experienced professionals at senior levels, essentially read from their slides when presenting. Or their slides have lots of points but the presenter ignores them and leaves the audience confused about whether to focus on the side or the presenter.
Slides that accompany a presentation shouldn’t be the focus of attention or prop up a poor presenter.
So, don’t develop slides so you can read them. Develop them to support you. Start with what you need to say by developing your outline, then create slides that complement and emphasize your points rather than starting with a slide and then scripting what you say around the slide.
3. Incorporate Graphics Into Your PowerPoint Presentation to Evoke Emotion
Slides don’t need to have bullets. If you do your presentation slides properly, they will be a guide or support to what you are saying. While you can accomplish that with short bullet points on your slides, you will have more impact with graphics and images.
And you don’t need follow the so-called rules of thumbs for the number of slides, since the time you spend on each slide is what should guide you.