|Photo of a poster at Bristol Parkway Rail Station|
Although 'death by powerpoint' is a much vaunted expression , it seems it is an 'urban myth' .
Commercial buying committees still favour it. The Buyers' views of Salespeople survey 2012 - shortly to be published - illustrates this.
But whatever the medium , it is HOW the message is used that matters most.
PowerPoint is just the medium not the message in a presentation.
Too many business presenters rely on PowerPoint forgetting that Slides are intended as a visual aid for your audience, they are not best used a a script.
Even if they help us to remember our content they may not remind us of the interesting embellishments to give a presentation some freshness and spontaneity.
Just relying on slides from PowerPoint can also be rather monotonous.
If we want to use PowerPoint in our presentation make sure we are in control of it not it of us!
Most of us in Business only use a minute part of what PowerPoint software provides.
It is like what I imagine would be like driving a Formula 1 Ferrari around the circuit but never getting out of first gear.
There are some excellent books now on PowerPoint but they are quite difficult to navigate around.
I would recommend Cliff Atkinson's " Beyond Bullet Points" ISBN 0-7356-2052-0 published by Microsoft Press. My copy is 2005 but it has probably been updated. Scroll down for link to website.
Even if story boarding is not your thing, these simple tips will break up a 'vanilla' PowerPoint presentation.
One of the most useful presenting aids in a PowerPoint show are the ' B' key for Blank and 'W' for White key.
They enable one not to appear to be shackled to a slide show and allow the presenter to control the presentation flow and flexibility.
If someone asks a question which you can answer then and there, you can draw the groups attention to your answer and not be distracted by the slide by pressing B or W.
Also by blanking or whitening the screen you can use an additional visual aid e.g. a sample or maybe draw an explanation on a flip chart ( as a supplementary medium) bring variety and change in pace into your presentation.
Additionally if you have a slide number checklist of your presentation by entering the number you can move directly to that slide. This feature is extremely useful if you want to skip some slides to catch up on time or when at question time someone in the audience wishes to ask a question where you can quickly answer their question by going straight to the relevant slide
For further little tricks try the F1 button when in slide show mode and it reveals four useful windows