How to Give a GREAT PowerPoint Presentation

Last week I made a video on the types of business meetings. What people do wrong the most in meetings is PowerPoint presentations. So in this video, I’m going to be explaining how to give a great PowerPoint presentation. Watch now!

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I want to start with a very simple concept. If you follow this concept, you are on your way to giving a great presentation. Here is the concept. Stop giving long PowerPoint presentations. People hate long PowerPoints. In my opinion, that is the number one reason people hate going to meetings. So please, if you get nothing else from this video, try to make your PowerPoint presentations shorter and you will give better presentations.

Let me explain why this works. Last week we looked at the types of meetings. Here is the list:

  1. Status Meeting
  2. Brainstorming
  3. Operational
  4. Training
  5. Team building

Let’s run through this list. Status meetings should not have any PowerPoint presentation, you are just going through a task list of items. Brainstorming should not have any PowerPoint presentation, you are likely writing on a white board as a group. Operational meetings are about making a decision and you should need minimal slides. Training is the only meeting that needs long PowerPoint presentations, because it is like a class. And of course Team building shouldn’t have any PowerPoint presentations. So most meetings you should not even be doing a PowerPoint presentation.

I want to talk about Operational meetings specifically and explain what often goes wrong. So you might bring a team of people together to make a critical business decision. And the manager will walk in and say, “We are here today to make an important decision. Before we make the decision, let me show you 20 PowerPoint slides so you can understand what we are deciding.” That is when everyone stops paying attention in your meeting.

I do not think a lot of people realize how valuable it is in business to be concise and to the point. People do not have time to listen to your 20 PowerPoint slides. Let me explain what you should do instead. Operational meetings should only have three PowerPoint slides.

  1. Background information. What has happened historically? How did we get here?
  2. Define the Issue. Really define the pain point you are trying to improve? Are you trying to do things faster? Save money? Or improve quality? Try to be very specific on the problem.
  3. Recommend a solution. You should have already reviewed a number of different options. What option are you recommending and why is it the best?

The reason you only use three slides is very practical. It perfectly manages your timeframe for the meeting. A critical decision should be about an hour meeting. So if you have four people in the meeting, each person can speak five minutes on each slide. Each slide gets twenty minutes. And in one hour, you have had an engaging discussion, and hopefully have made a sound business decision. The conversation is more effective than you going through a large number of PowerPoint slides.

You will notice in this time breakdown, that most of the time is allocated to discussion, not the PowerPoint slides. If you are making a critical business decision, your goal is not to give a presentation, but to be the master of ceremonies for a discussion. You want to engage the room in conversation around this decision.

The point I am trying to get across is that meetings are not really about the presentation, they are about engagement with your co-workers. So in terms of PowerPoint slides, less is usually more. The problem we are addressing is that people hate meetings. It does not have to be that way. People should love going to meetings. Imagine your work week, if every meeting you went to you felt engaged, and you were making great business decisions, and meetings were an effective use of your time. That is what meetings should feel like.

Leave a comment down below letting me know what you think!

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Neither Zach De Gregorio or Wolves and Finance Inc. shall be liable for any damages related to information in this video. It is recommended you contact a CPA in your area for business advice.

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