10 Super-Quick Tips to Design Better Slides

Next time you open PowerPoint to create a slide deck for a meeting or presentation, remember these super-quick tips to ensure better-looking, better-functioning slides that add visual value to your talk.

  1. Highlight key words by bolding, not by underlining.corner
  2. Avoid Random Caps, ALL CAPS, and inconsistencies in capitalization.
  3. Stamp out ugly “bumper sticker” boxes. Soften the edges, eliminate lines around them, and consider using a build so they appear only when you click.
  4. Use SmartArt to quickly create graphical elements.
  5. Use plenty of photos, as long as they add value. Show people and places the audience will enjoy seeing.
  6. Take and use your own photos and video clips in your slides. No worry about royalties or copyright.
  7. Walk to the back of the room to see how your slides actually appear to the audience. Edit as needed.
  8. Streamline visuals: put less on each slide, delete surplus bullets, punctuation, words & boxes around things.
  9. Don’t use the same headline on each slide; instead let the headlines tell your story, show movement within the presentation.
  10. Generally avoid dark backgrounds and stale templates unless corporate mandates. A clean white background looks fresh.

Take a fresh look at your slides today; do they pass the “great to look at” test? If not, take 5 minutes to polish them. Your audience will thank you!

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