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Each week at my business networking group, two people give 10-minute presentations about their businesses. Some choose to augment their talk with a PowerPoint presentation.

After seeing quite a few of these presentations, one thing has become perfectly clear: A well-done PowerPoint can really help audience members follow, comprehend and remember the main points you want to make. A poorly-done PowerPoint can have the opposite effect!

This month’s article will help you make the most of this option.


The presentation begins. The PowerPoint starts. And…ugh! The presenter is only three slides in and already you’re staring at something like this:

PowerPoint image 1.jpg

Or maybe you’re given five seconds or so to try to figure out why you’re looking at a bunch of seemingly random images, like this:

PowerPoint image 2.jpg

Don’t be the one who creates slides like those!
A PowerPoint deck is meant to support your overall presentation and messaging—not make it unbearable. Next time you need to create a PowerPoint, here are a few simple tips to ensure success.

#1: Keep it simple!
Put as few words as possible on each slide. The idea is to present just the high level, bare bones message. Ideally this means a maximum of three or four bullet points, especially if each bullet point is a sentence versus a single word.

Your PowerPoint should help listeners follow your verbal presentation and clearly communicate what the most important points are that you are making at that moment. It should not be your script. Slides should look like this…

PowerPoint image 3.jpg

Not like this…

Power Point image 4.jpg

#2: Keep it visually consistent
Pick one PowerPoint template and use it throughout the presentation. Be consistent with fonts, font sizes, colors, etc. It can be very distracting if your presentation looks like a complete hodge-podge, going from this

Power Point image 5.jpg

to this

PowerPoint image 6.jpg

to this.

PowerPoint image 7.jpg

#3: Keep it visually interesting
If all you have is slide after slide of words, words, words, your presentation will be very boring. Try inserting charts, graphs and product images. Use stock photos to illustrate points that are not product-specific.

But if you’re thinking that buying stock photos isn’t in your budget, don’t worry—there are many free stock photo sites. For my last PowerPoint I primarily used Pixabay, Unsplash and Pexels, but these are certainly not the only options

What Others Are Saying

"Geez, Linda, you sure write well!"

Ray Johnston
President, Lido Property Management