Practical PowerPoint Skills Training for Business & Sales Professionals

Do your staff have the PowerPoint skills they need to efficiently create effective visuals?

As a leader, you want your staff to have the skills they need in order to perform at their best. How are their skills at using PowerPoint efficiently to create effective visuals? It is a skill they need every week and most business and sales professionals have never learned the key techniques that would make their job of creating presentations much quicker and more effective.

These skills are not taught in school, university, or professional designations. Almost everyone I speak with is self-taught. They’ve picked up what they can from experimenting, asking colleagues, or searching on YouTube. They get by, but they know they could be less frustrated and more efficient.

They don’t need generic skills, they need customized training

Signing your staff up for an “Intermediate” or “Advanced” PowerPoint course isn’t going to help. These “every feature in the software” courses are not practical and do not focus on the skills they need to learn.

I offer a far better solution: customized training on the techniques they will actually use to create effective slides for the presentations they have to create. Here’s how this works.

I start by reviewing example presentations from the course participants. I see what information they need to communicate and the slides they are currently creating. I analyze the slide elements to identify any inefficient methods that are being used.

Next, I create makeovers of some of the slides that cover the key techniques they need to learn. This “before and after” helps your staff see exactly what they can create. By applying the techniques to their own slides, it makes the training practical and applicable to their situation.

During each session, I use a “makeover and demonstration” approach. I share a makeover of their slides then I drop out to PowerPoint and show them the skills I used to create the makeover. It is practical PowerPoint skills training that they can immediately apply to their presentations.

During a recent session I asked what the participants had applied from the previous sessions and three comments stood out: 1) they used the techniques I showed them to create slides that more effectively communicated the important messages, 2) the slides were more interesting to present so they were more engaged in delivering the slides, and 3) they used the tips and techniques I showed to dramatically reduce the time it took to create the slides.

Private online portal of session recordings and additional resources

Participants can follow along in PowerPoint as I demonstrate the techniques if they want to practice during the session. Others will watch my demonstration and practice later. That is possible because I provide a private online portal for each course cohort. This portal contains:

  • Recordings of each session with time codes so the participants can quickly and easily jump to the technique they want to review
  • Downloads of my makeover slides in PowerPoint format so they have a starting point for their own improvements
  • Additional videos and articles to extend the learning

Typical course is four 90-minute virtual sessions

The typical course consists of four 90-minute live virtual sessions. This makes it easy to schedule and easy for staff to attend no matter where they are geographically. Here’s what the sessions typically cover:

Session 1: How to properly use the corporate template so you don’t fight with it; turning bullet point slides into visual text slides; using tables to organize comparisons; creating timeline visuals

Session 2: Creating diagrams in 10 minutes instead of struggling for an hour; using images and icons from the corporate intranet, from Microsoft, or from PDFs; incorporating videos in a presentation

Session 3: Adding callouts to direct the audience’s attention and keep them focused; using build animation to give context before they come to a conclusion; using Morph to create movie quality visuals without a lot of effort

Session 4: Different options to deliver PowerPoint slides; expert techniques in Presenter View; virtual presentation tips & techniques; ADA (Ask Dave Anything) time

Exactly what is covered in each session is finalized after my review of the sample presentations. Like I said, this is customized training, not a generic course that doesn’t fit your needs.

I use Office 365 and nothing else

Your corporate IT group restricts you to the approved software, Office 365. So that’s what I use. I don’t use add-ins, plug-ins, or programming that your staff would not be approved to use. I show them how to create effective visuals using only the software on their laptops.

This doesn’t cover data visuals or PowerPoint basics

This course is not for someone who hasn’t used PowerPoint before or is looking for basic skills. I have a document with links to online tutorials that cover the basics if someone wants to review those skills because they are a little rusty. I assume everyone is a regular user of PowerPoint and has those skills.

I also don’t cover creating data visuals and graphs in this course. I teach those skills in Excel in a different course. If your staff needs Excel training, it could cover data preparation, analysis, and graphing. I can help you find the right resource for the Excel skills you need to develop.

Ready to give your staff the PowerPoint skills they need? Contact me today!

If this sounds like what your staff needs, email me or call me today at 905-510-4911 (Eastern time zone) so we can start discussing how to customize the session for your group.