Workshop Topics

Together we will design a customized workshop with some of the following topics

Planning a Presentation

  • Insights from Audiences – what over 680 audience members said in my latest survey about what presenters should do better
  • The RAPIDS Approach to Planning a Presentation – six steps that will help you create a message your audience will understand:
    • Real Goal – clearly define the destination you want to reach at the end of the presentation
    • Audience Analysis – determine where the audience is now, so we can include the right content for each audience
    • Presentation Outline – organize the main points and the supporting information so it is logical and flows smoothly from the beginning to the end of the presentation
    • Information that is laser focused – five strategies to focus your content and avoid information overload
    • Detailed plan for each slide – outline how each slide will look, what it will say, and how you will present it
    • Sufficiently prepared to present – plan time for practice and rehearsal, use checklists for the content and technology, and make sure you are set up well before the presentation is to begin
  • Applying the RAPIDS approach to common presentations – Tips on applying the RAPIDS approach to the four most common types of presentations: Training/Education, Status Update/Review/Briefing, Recommendation, and Sales

Slide Design

  • Color selection – how to select colors for backgrounds, text, diagrams and graphs that can be easily seen even in poor lighting
  • Font selection – how to select fonts that research shows are easier to read and what size of font will be easily read by the people in the back of the room
  • Slide Layout – how to select the correct layout for your slides that will make them easy to re-use in the future
  • Organizational template – how to work within the template your organization has developed

Creating Effective Slides

  • Effective headlines – write a headline for each slide summarizing the key point you want the audience to remember
  • Selecting the best visual – learn how to identify the best visual from past experiences and clues in the words that you use to describe the slide
  • Text slides – see examples and best practices for bullet point slides, quotations, tables, and textual information
  • Graphs – how to select the correct graph for the point you are making and create it effectively in PowerPoint
  • Diagrams – use diagrams such as process diagrams, relationship diagrams, time-based diagrams, and dashboard diagrams to illustrate relationships instead of using paragraphs of text
  • Multimedia – effective incorporate photos, screen captures, audio, and video clips into your presentation
  • Adding callouts – how to make the point of the visual stand out clearly so that there is no doubt what your point is
  • Building information to keep audience focus – use appropriate animation to build the elements on your slide and allow you to have the attention of the audience as you explain each item
  • Drilling down into complex information – techniques to allow you to explain complex topics step-by-step so the audience follows along.
  • Slide Makeovers – see the ideas applied to slides that the participants have submitted in advance, demonstrating how the ideas will work in their situation; "instant makeover ideas" allows participants to bring slides to the workshop, and I draw on photos of the slides on my iPad to show ideas to improve the effectiveness of the slide

Delivering the Presentation

  • Checklists to use before the presentation – how to test your slides and what to make sure you pack for the presentation
  • Handouts – how to prepare notes for the speaker and how to create an audience handout that keeps them paying attention during the presentation and serves as a handy reference after the presentation
  • Slide Delivery – tips from the pros on setting up and delivering an excellent presentation, including keyboard shortcuts to use during the presentation
  • Handling problems during the presentation – techniques for dealing with equipment setup issues or equipment failure during the presentation
  • Web-based presentations – how web presentations differ from live presentations; design changes required for the web service; delivery tips for web presentations
  • E-mailed presentations – techniques for creating slide files that are effective when only sent by e-mail and not presented
  • Creating a video from your presentation – ways that you can take your visuals and an audio recording of your presentation and create a video using low or no cost tools that allow you to post the video on YouTube or other video sharing sites (including your corporate intranet)
  • Delivering corporate PowerPoint presentations on an iPad – iPads are being integrated into many organizations, and you can have executives and sales professionals use the corporate PowerPoint slides in one-on-one presentation to key contacts without having to purchase expensive apps or add on equipment
  • Greening your presentations – learn how you can eliminate paper handouts and paper evaluations and still allow audience members to take notes on a handout and give you feedback, all from their smartphones, tablets, or laptops, all without custom app programming


PowerPoint techniques

  • Slide Design: Working with an organization's template, selecting the correct layout for each slide so it is easy to re-use in a future presentation
  • Text slides: Grouping text within a shape to show related text, add highlight effects to focus attention on words or phrases, multiple formatting in a single text box
  • Graphs: Create graphs in PowerPoint instead of Excel so they are easier to use and don't expose confidential information, clean up the default graphs, animate graphs to give more control to the presenter when delivering the presentation, fill columns or bars with an image, create a waterfall graph using a hidden stacked column graph, adding a comparison line to make interpretation easier
  • Diagrams: Techniques that make it easy to create diagrams using the built-in tools, such as being able to easily draw perfectly horizontal or vertical lines, draw exact circles or squares, create an evenly spaced timeline, group items and edit elements of grouped items in place, lining up objects perfectly on a slide, creating proportional shapes
  • Photos: where to find photos you can legally use, resizing photos so your PowerPoint file doesn't get too large to email, making the background of an image transparent, compressing a file that has high-resolution images in it, cropping and rotating photos, applying photo techniques to imported images, importing sections of a PDF file as an image, including and working with screen capture images
  • Video: preparing video clips so they look good on a slide, inserting a video on a slide and preparing it to play during the presentation, simple video editing tools,  alternate technique for files that can't be inserted on a slide
  • Tables: five ways to copy cells from Excel, how to create tables in PowerPoint using a text box or the table tool, how to make numbers line up perfectly in a column, adding universal indicators such as arrows or check marks to add meaning
  • Callouts: how to create callous that are easily seen on any background, using the built-in callout shapes, how to add transparency to allow the audience to still see what is in the background
  • Animation: which effects should be used so they don't distract the audience, how to use reveal animation, how to break down a single image and build it using animation, how to use motion paths effectively, how to animate multiple objects at once
  • Delivery: Adding hidden slides to answer possible audience questions, jumping to hidden slides or source files such as spreadsheets if needed, drawing on the screen to capture audience input, blanking the screen to focus the audience on the presenter
  • Complex visuals: using the Break Down and Zoom In technique, using the Zoom In on a Portion technique