I’ve seen a rash of presentations in recent days that have recycled PowerPoint slides. The mere fact that I know this is a problem. But it usually manifests itself in words as well as the faulty visual. Some examples:
- Presentation date wrong
- Presentation group or place wrong
- Times on slides (break at 2:15!)
- Custom information that doesn’t apply
It’s been accompanied with quotes like:
- “Well, the last time I taught this I guess we took a break at 2:15“
- “I guess you can tell we’re not at the San Diego Chamber of Commerce.“
- “I thought I had changed this slide. I meant to.“
When you don’t take the time to make changes to your slides EVERY TIME you present, you tell the audience:
- You are exactly like my previous group (or at least I think you are)
- I didn’t care enough about you to work at this
- This show will go exactly like all the others
I can’t imagine why a presenter would ever publish a time beforehand in a PPT slide, but even if you have a reason for that, you MUST change it. If there are slides in your PPT that need altering each time, might I suggest making a hidden slide that indexes ALL the changes you need to make, then consult that slide (or note, if you prefer, on the title slide) before you hit the stage.
As an aside, a presenter should strive to make something custom in every presentation, so figure out what you can use that is unique to that audience.
Make sure all references to previous shows are OUT of your PowerPoint.
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