Guest Author - Chris Curtis
You have spent hours putting together your slide presentation for the Workshop you are presenting next week. While the slideshow is your aid to an effect presentation of the material, you feel it contains important information for the participants to carry away with them as a reminder of what they have learned. You need to make some important decisions about the handouts.
Do you supply them before or after the presentation?
Before - your audience my be fumbling though the handout while you are presenting instead of listening to your important message.
After your audience cannot jot down your excellent points not found in the slide show itself.
How many slides should you display on a single page?
PowerPoint lets you choose from 1, 2, 3, 6, or 9 slides to a page
Three to a page is the only layout that supplies lines for note taking next to each slide
Should you double side the copies to save paper?
Should you include detail slides hidden from the slide presentation?
There may be some important details that you are delivering in your talk but as you know, too much detail in the slide presentation is distracting. Consider designing slides with the important details of your delivery, hide them from your slide presentation, but include them in your handouts. This provides the best of both worlds, your audience will be listening your value added message without distraction and walks away with the essence of your message in a detailed slide.
Sending your presentation to Word is a great way to expand your layout options. Once converted to Word you can customize the layout to suit your individualized needs. The Word choices you can make include:
Notes next to slides (3 to a page)
Blank lines next to slides (3 to a page)
Notes below (1 to a page)
Blank lines below (1 to a page)
To Send your Presentation to Word:
Click on File | Send to: | Word
Select the page layout option you want
Click on OK
The slides will be imported to a new Word document. This will take a few minutes depending on the number of slides in your presentation.
Because much of what I do is technical in nature, I do supply a copy of the presentation slides before the presentation so the participants can make notes taking directly on the handouts. I keep my slides very brief, graphical, and interesting to the topic but deliver the details in my talk. Where important, I include detailed slides in the handouts, these I hold back till the end so that the audience is listening to what I have to say rather than reading detailed notes. I generally use 3 slides to a page with lines for note taking. I also always double side my copies to save paper.
Regardless of your experience, you must be comfortable with the choices you make. Good presentations are not difficult to pull of when you are prepared and feel confident.
Here's a tip: Make sure you are ready to go at least two days prior to the presentation date. The day before, go back to your presentation slide and view it as though you were a participant receiving the package. Evaluate your reaction toward what you have received. Know your audience and put yourself in their shoes.
Good luck on you presentation!
Effective Presentation Skills : A Practical Guide for Better Speaking
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