You’ve all heard of death by PowerPoint and I’m sure some of you have even being unlucky enough to attend a presentation that left you wondering how many more slides there were!!
A good tip I picked up a few years ago was to always use the 10, 20, 30 rule when creating a presentation – if you do you’re more likely to keep your audience focused and will therefore have much more chance of getting your point across.
10 – 10 slides.
A good presentation should not contain more than 10 slides. Why, I hear you ask. The reason is because the normal human being cannot comprehend more than 10 different concepts in a meeting. I wish someone had told the person delivering the 100 slide presentation I sat through recently.
20 – 20 minutes.
It should take you approx. 20 minutes to deliver a 10 slide presentation effectively. Don’t panic if you’ve been allocated a 60 minute slot, remember that people don’t always turn up on time and quite a few usually have a pressing engagement that means they need to leave early, you’ll need to set your presentation up and you also need to allow time to answer questions so 20 minutes for the presentation itself is not unrealistic.
30 point font –
quite a lot of the presentations that I’ve attended have been created with font as small as 10 points. The presenter enters everything they want to say onto the slide and then reads it to the audience. After the first sentence (if that) the audience has figured out that you’re reading the text, reads ahead of you because it can read faster than you can speak and the result is that you end up talking to yourself whist your audience is busy doing other things.
The main reason people use a small font is that they don’t really know their material well enough and they wrongly think that more text is more convincing. If you use a larger point size you will be forced to only enter the key points of your presentation and this will mean that the audience are more likely to listen to you to find out what the key points mean.
Try the 10, 20, 30 rule for yourself when you create your next presentation and see what a difference it can make.