No, this post isn’t about must-have accessories or footwear or clothes that you wear as opposed to ‘what not to wear’ that flop actress turned fashionista Soha Ali Khan hosts on one of the lifestyle channels.
This post instead is focused on life skills.
If you thought you are done with power points after your basic computer classes, think again. The corporate sector thrives on it. There is nothing and nowhere that .ppt or .pptx (depending on which version you use) doesn’t exist. Power points are sacrosanct be it creative, communications, IT or any other department you can think about. So PRACTICE AND PRACTICE. Perfect those skills. But before you start to jazz up your presos with animations, remember:
Have a story board in place before you start to put together a slide
Remember, your slides are just helping you tell a story and is Not the story itself
Keep it Simple Silly (As in everything else, keep it simple)
- No more than 3 major bullet points
- Do not clutter your slides with text . (You do not want your slide to look like the standard disclaimer that insurance/banking firms throw your way)
- Go easy with the colors. Keep to the standard color palette that goes with the template you have chosen
- Keep to 2 fonts all through (Corporates usually prefer Arial and Calibri; Cambria and Book Antiqua) and don’t use fancy fonts like Wing Dings 😉
- A single picture is equal to a 1000 words
- Power Point has a nifty tool called Smart Art which helps you represent relationships – pyramid, matrix, etc
- Template layouts also allow you to craft a slide to make story telling easy
- Go on the web to get graphics that allow you to use visuals more effectively. Eg: Graphic below can be used for sales network, ecosystem partnership, etc..
(Courtesy: Google images)
- Keep the language simple
- Since text is usually in bullet points you can go easy on article usage but good grammar is still a must
- Do a spell check, fact check
- Avoid acronyms: More often than not companies think that the audience understands acronyms which are industry or company specific
- Light text on light background do not work, same goes for dark text on dark background
- To Go easy with animations and builds, they are distracting and can take away from what could have been a great presentation
- To Check for formatting. Eg; alignments of boxes and grids (Power Point 2010 makes it easy to ensure proper formatting as there is an inbuilt grid that helps to keep all the boxes, graphics, texts, photos, etc… in place)
- Different locations require different formats. Eg; 16:9 is great if you plan to show the presentation in a large room & big screen but if you plan to play your slides in a small room go with a 4:3 set up