Slide Design – Best Practices for Exceptional Presentations

Slide Design – Best Practices for Exceptional Presentations

PowerPoint is a powerful business tool but only if you make the most of it. PowerPoint is a platform that makes slides; but it is you who will give the presentations. Remember that you create slides to support a spoken presentation. Here are a few things to help you create powerful slides to support your presentations.

1. Keep it uncomplicated- Using too many words or graphics is confusing. Also, figures and numbers do not translate well on screen rather refer to figures and numbers in your handouts, later. Consider using a graphic or image to convey a point when emphasizing a statistic in PowerPoint.

2. Sensible use of fonts- Use the same font for your entire PowerPoint slide designs. Regardless of what font style you choose, ensure the text is readable from the back of the room. Use different font sizes for headings and text.

3. Choose colors smartly- Having a white or light background with black or dark colored text works best. This will also maintain the visual intensity of the slides.

4. Avoid using cheesy clip art- Instead of using a frequently repeated image from the clipart library, use outside images and graphics for variety and visual appeal.

5. Limit the text- The best slides are those with no text at all. The slides are meant to support the speaker; similarly, well designed slides are worthless without the presentation that accompanies them.

6. Use bullet points properly- Bullet point should never contain full sentences but only deliver key ideas. The 6 x 6 rule should be applied i.e. bullet points should have no more than six words and no more than six bullet points should be there on the screen.

7. Have a visual theme- Similar to the library of clip art available in PowerPoint, instead of choosing an available template, go online to find unique PowerPoint presentation designs or create your own using a simple background and color scheme.

8. Avoid moving slide elements- Moving text or graphics around on the slide seem very distracting to the audience. Avoid the animation feature unless it is important to reveal your points slowly.

Following the above best practices to prepare and deliver your PowerPoint Presentations will ensure successful outcomes.