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How to Make Awesome PowerPoint Presentations

How to Make Awesome PowerPoint Presentations

Awesome PowerPoint presentations usher in what everybody desires: the attainment of goals. These presentations—if prepared and administered efficiently—are worth more than millions especially to big brands. Of course, the results are mirrored on smaller brands.

That said, it’s worth investing time and effort to create a well-crafted PowerPoint presentation. Why? These tools while primarily used for marketing, are geared towards effective communication. If they are utilized wisely, they can catapult a company’s sales performance for the long haul. Consequently, ballooning sales volume translates to business growth.

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This is a simple guide on better PowerPoint presentations:

1. Simplify.

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2. Tell a story.

3. Clarify points within the body.

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4. Have a grand finale. Incite action. Solicit emotions.

Let’s usher in more detailed explanations about the guide above.

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  1. Draft your talk. Create an organized draft. You’ll use it as basis for your PowerPoint presentation.  
  2. Organize. Lay down a plan. Base on your draft, draw up a plan on how to create your presentation. The principle at work here is similar to the one used in making movies. Draw up an illustration board, even just on a piece of paper. (I’m serious, you can use any kind of paper.) Boards guide you to arrange your slides in an organize manner. You might think it’s a waste of time; on the contrary, it facilitates the process. Next, on your board, create sketched frames. On each frame, you sketch how your graphics will appear. Make it detailed. Include a space where you will put the text.
  3. Make clear, easy to understand frames which are not boring. Remember these points: aim to have a clear message using graphics, make sure your letters are legibly printed, use appropriate colors, use visuals that will help ignite interest from your audience, make sure your slides enhance your talk rather than diminishes it’s impact, pacing must be just right. Not too fast and not too slow.
  4. Go directly to the point. Follow this guide:  Don’t over introduce your presentation, have an intro that is short, yet thorough, and after the intro, go straight to your main topic. Your presentation should not veer away from the core of your topic. One of the most common mistakes of PowerPoint presentations is that they branch out to other topics that are not at all connected to the main focus of the presentation.
  5. They should enhance your talk. Always remember, your PowerPoint presentation is a tool to help you get across your message. It’s not the star of the show, your message is. So don’t make the mistake of making your PowerPoint presentation drown your star. It should act like a supporting actor in a movie. He makes the lead star shine even more. He enhances his character.
  6. Use strong visuals. Your visuals should be big enough for the size of your audience. If you have a way to check your venue, go check it before you create your visuals. In business circles, this is known as actual ocular inspection or AOI. Doing this will help you decide on what font size to use and the right size for your graphics. It will also help you plan on how big your body gestures should be. The standard is, the bigger the audience, the bigger your gestures should be.

Here’s a simple guide:

  • Easy to identify
  • Easy to comprehend
  • Connect the ideas, words, symbols, graphics, graphs, and other elements you will use in your talk.
  • If you are weak on graphics, I suggest you hire a good graphics artist. Remember, as Frederick R. Barnard said, “A picture paints a thousand words.”
  • Use appropriate colors, shapes and internationally accepted symbols.

Here are some more insights about PowerPoint presentations: In conversations, you may metaphorically dance with the thoughts of whom you’re talking with. This will help you formulate thoughts; but in a PowerPoint presentation, you’re on the spot. Fail to deliver a clear and easy to remember message and your audience will go home confused and your reputation tarnished.

So what makes an awesome PowerPoint presentation?

  • Your audience understands your topic much better.
  • They remember the main points.
  • They are inspired to take action (this is the emotional response you desire).
  • The audience is equipped to share your message (i.e. your message is crystal clear and concise, therefore it’s easy to remember and to share).

To summarize everything, awesome PowerPoint presentations are short, punchy, and clear.

More by this author

Anthony Dejolde

TV/Radio personality who educates his audience on entrepreneurship, productivity, and leadership.

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Last Updated on March 29, 2021

5 Types of Horrible Bosses and How to Beat Them All

5 Types of Horrible Bosses and How to Beat Them All

When I left university I took a job immediately, I had been lucky as I had spent a year earning almost nothing as an intern so I was offered a role. On my first day I found that I had not been allocated a desk, there was no one to greet me so I was left for some hours ignored. I happened to snipe about this to another employee at the coffee machine two things happened. The first was that the person I had complained to was my new manager’s wife, and the second was, in his own words, ‘that he would come down on me like a ton of bricks if I crossed him…’

What a great start to a job! I had moved to a new city, and had been at work for less than a morning when I had my first run in with the first style of bad manager. I didn’t stay long enough to find out what Mr Agressive would do next. Bad managers are a major issue. Research from Approved Index shows that more than four in ten employees (42%) state that they have previously quit a job because of a bad manager.

The Dream Type Of Manager

My best manager was a total opposite. A man who had been the head of the UK tax system and was working his retirement running a company I was a very junior and green employee for. I made a stupid mistake, one which cost a lot of time and money and I felt I was going to be sacked without doubt.

I was nervous, beating myself up about what I had done, what would happen. At the end of the day I was called to his office, he had made me wait and I had spent that day talking to other employees, trying to understand where I had gone wrong. It had been a simple mistyped line of code which sent a massive print job out totally wrong. I learn how I should have done it and I fretted.

My boss asked me to step into his office, he asked me to sit down. “Do you know what you did?” I babbled, yes, I had been stupid, I had not double-checked or asked for advice when I was doing something I had not really understood. It was totally my fault. He paused. “Will you do that again?” Of course I told him I would not, I would always double check, ask for help and not try to be so clever when I was not!

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“Okay…”

That was it. I paused and asked, should I clear my desk. He smiled. “You have learnt a valuable lesson, I can be sure that you will never make a mistake like that again. Why would I want to get rid of an employee who knows that?”

I stayed with that company for many years, the way I was treated was a real object lesson in good management. Sadly, far too many poor managers exist out there.

The Complete Catalogue of Bad Managers

The Bully

My first boss fitted into the classic bully class. This is so often the ‘old school’ management by power style. I encountered this style again in the retail sector where one manager felt the only way to get the best from staff was to bawl and yell.

However, like so many bullies you will often find that this can be someone who either knows no better or is under stress and they are themselves running scared of the situation they have found themselves in.

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The Invisible Boss

This can either present itself as management from afar (usually the golf course or ‘important meetings) or just a boss who is too busy being important to deal with their staff.

It can feel refreshing as you will often have almost total freedom with your manager taking little or no interest in your activities, however you will soon find that you also lack the support that a good manager will provide. Without direction you may feel you are doing well just to find that you are not delivering against expectations you were not told about and suddenly it is all your fault.

The Micro Manager

The frustration of having a manager who feels the need to be involved in everything you do. The polar opposite to the Invisible Boss you will feel that there is no trust in your work as they will want to meddle in everything you do.

Dealing with the micro-manager can be difficult. Often their management style comes from their own insecurity. You can try confronting them, tell them that you can do your job however in many cases this will not succeed and can in fact make things worse.

The Over Promoted Boss

The Over promoted boss categorises someone who has no idea. They have found themselves in a management position through service, family or some corporate mystery. They are people who are not only highly unqualified to be managers they will generally be unable to do even your job.

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You can find yourself persistently frustrated by the situation you are in, however it can seem impossible to get out without handing over your resignation.

The Credit Stealer

The credit stealer is the boss who will never publically acknowledge the work you do. You will put in the extra hours working on a project and you know that, in the ‘big meeting’ it will be your credit stealing boss who will take all of the credit!

Again it is demoralising, you see all of the credit for your labour being stolen and this can often lead to good employees looking for new careers.

3 Essential Ways to Work (Cope) with Bad Managers

Whatever type of bad boss you have there are certain things that you can do to ensure that you get the recognition and protection you require to not only remain sane but to also build your career.

1. Keep evidence

Whether it is incidents with the bully or examples of projects you have completed with the credit stealer you will always be well served to keep notes and supporting evidence for projects you are working on.

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Buy your own notebook and ensure that you are always making notes, it becomes a habit and a very useful one as you have a constant reminder as well as somewhere to explore ideas.

Importantly, if you do have to go to HR or stand-up for yourself you will have clear records! Also, don’t always trust that corporate servers or emails will always be available or not tampered with. Keep your own content.

2. Hold regular meetings

Ensure that you make time for regular meetings with your boss. This is especially useful for the over-promoted or the invisible boss to allow you to ‘manage upwards’. Take charge where you can to set your objectives and use these meetings to set clear objectives and document the status of your work.

3. Stand your ground, but be ready to jump…

Remember that you don’t have to put up with poor management. If you have issues you should face them with your boss, maybe they do not know that they are coming across in a bad way.

However, be ready to recognise if the situation is not going to change. If that is the case, keep your head down and get working on polishing your CV! If it isn’t working, there will be something better out there for you!

Good luck!

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