Lesson 6: Showtime - Presenting PowerPoint Presentations

About this lesson

How Do I Do My BEST When Presenting a PowerPoint Presentation?

The key is to be prepared!

Even if I have Never Done One?

Don’t worry, our decades of experience is shared with you so that you can gain our expertise.

Do I need this Class if I have Presented Before?

YES! We have tons of experience (and disasters) to make you even BETTER!

But How?

This video tutorial will walk you through all the needed steps to get ready and then HOW to run a PowerPoint Slideshow, including a video preview of the controls and tips to best run the show (mouse? or keyboard? We will cover pros and cons).

We will go over everything you need to get prepared because on-stage confidence comes from being well prepared.

This is the final lesson of our six-part masterclass, and afterward, you will be all set to go on stage and SHINE! But if you skipped all the previous five tutorials, this can stand alone and help you get ready.

Get rid of the pre-show jitters by being prepared and follow our coaching tips.

What Will I Learn?

  • How to check out the presentation room in advance (including what to look for and what to test)
  • What to bring to your presentation
  • How best to prepare your speaking parts (script vs scripted talking points)
  • Use of speaker notes
  • Printing out handouts (do you really need to?)
  • How to control the presentation (using SlideShow Mode)
  • And lots of small subtle hints from our decades of experience

Bonus Material: A Checklist and a PowerPoint four slide Room Tester

Look for the course download link below.

The Masterclass

This is lesson six of the six-part Masterclass on becoming a PowerPoint Power User, but the ideas covered in video training stand on their own and there is no requirement to watch the earlier lessons.


  • Scouting Out the Presentation Room
    • Cables to bring, lighting pitfalls, login failures, podium location strategies
  • Picking Your Presentation Style: Scripted or Structured
    • Are you going to memorize your speech or work from talking points? Pros and Cons.
  • How to Handle Speaker Notes
    • How to incorporate your speaking notes inside of PowerPoint
    • How to run your presentation like a pro
  • Packing Your To-Go Bag for the Stage Show
    • A checklist of what not to forget
  • Pro Tips and Warnings
    • How to avoid the unexpected
    • How to BEST present
  • Additional Hardware Gear – Can it help?
    • Recommendation of what to bring and what to avoid


Subject Microsoft PowerPoint

Software Compatibility Office 2013 up to Office 365

Level Advanced

Course Completed Complete




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Below is a transcript of the video in raw format, but is searchable:

Welcome to module six of six from the YouTube training series becoming a PowerPoint power user.

If you’ve been following along you’ve built your slide deck with all my guidance and now just that one small thing. You need to give the presentation. In front of real people. Don’t worry. I’ll coach you through it all.

Unlike the previous five lessons where I showed you my desktop steps and mouse clicks, this session will be totally a PowerPoint presentation from start to end. Be with you the whole way. It’s showtime, so let’s power-up.

Our agenda. This session will take you from scouting out the presentation room to enhance your presentation and avoiding any pitfalls to prepare for your speaking parts. I’ll discuss the two approaches: a script and show versus a set of structured talking points plus what never to do I explain what you need to pack in your presentation bag and add in some tips for my years of experience.

So let’s go. Scouting out the room. First off you need to go and visit your presentation room in advance and if you are traveling attempt to book the room 30 minutes early to understand the layout you didn’t know how to power up all the music equipment and get connected to the projector.

The sound system if you’re using a microphone or plan on playing videos from your computer and if you need Wi-Fi, make sure you have access. What a disaster if you plan to show web page content, but the presentation room does not let outside her have access to the internet.

And a 30-minute early arrival may not solve that lack of Wi-Fi access best not even depend on Wi-Fi if you need to show web pages just to screen captures in advance and if you’re using the location rooms computer, make sure you have to log on credentials and that it can also read your USB drive if that’s how you’re moving your presentation around.

Or another control the lights. Some dim projection systems require you to lower the room’s lights to be visible. Dim rooms often equal sleepy audiences. But if no one can see your presentation then you have little choice but to lower the lights. How best to test run your presentation and check it out in the room.

As we discussed in our earlier training sessions a superior way is to visit the room before constructing your presentation to better understand the limitations of the space. I’m a free PowerPoint room tester presentation file that you can download at our website of power dash up dot training for this testing purposes look in the links down below.

Let’s look at this tester powerpoint with four slides. The first line is very basic black and white white drab, but you can use it like an i chart to see what is the smallest readable font from the back of the room. I’ve conveniently added the font size for your reference the second slide checks the color gradation in this particular one there is a small gradation with a black font on a light background no that we can test to make sure that the projector in the screen can show the full presentation with our four arrows point to each of the four sides, make sure you can see the tips of the arrows on the screen.

Check the background colors in this particular sample, we have a color gradation of the white font on a dark background, make sure you walk around the room as some projectors are not readable from all angles of the room no that this dark blue background has a very subtle pattern so you can see it in the room.

And this last slide is if you’re using objects in your presentation this sample will help you make sure that the projectors aspect ratio is correct by looking at the round circle is the truly round the wrong projector may distort it to an oval. And if you plan to use photos these skin tones are the hardest to represent and the best to test check it out carefully in your target room projector.

Slide widescreen versus standard as we covered in less than three formatting PowerPoint for effective design your presentation must match your projector and projectors fall into two aspect ratios standard or widescreen before you design your presentation know what the projector is aspect ratio is otherwise your presentation will look horrible, you get it wrong for more information check out our earlier YouTube class visit our YouTube channel and don’t forget to subscribe.

You can see it down below the subscribe button. Cables if you’re using your own laptop, make sure you have the right cables. Ask ahead of time but just in case Ring both HDMI just the most common and VGA for older projectors. I always carry both in my laptop bag and remember it must work with your laptop so check in advance.

You also need to know where to plug in the video cable and also find out if there’s a power outlet for your laptop just in case. Determine what you’re gonna present from if your laptop is in the back and you’re in the front you’re gonna need some way to remotely control your slide advances with either a wireless mouse or a Bluetooth and help remote control.

And if you’re using the room’s computer, you are not home free. You still have concerns. Do you have the right log on credentials to even get on the computer? Where will your presentation file be located on the local computer or on the network inside or even on some cloud storage device?

And if you go portable with you carrying the file on a USB you just check will the USB drive or some companies have very strict rules about plugging in USB devices and you would be out of luck. Don’t assume, find out. So here’s what I do when I go to a room that I do not control. I built two slideshow versions both the widescreen and the narrow just in case it’s a lot of work but if it’s an important presentation, I will build it.

I’ll bring multiple video adapters both HDMI and VGA and if I’m really paranoid I’ll bring several because I have seen them fail very very rarely but just in case I also pack extension cords just in case and I’ll make sure that I bring water because it’s good to have that.

Nearby. If it is a long-range room or far away, once again, I do have a trusty wireless. Bluetooth remote that I use to advance my slides and an extreme situations. I do bring a portable projector and a battery piece to go along with it.

For more help on that do ask on the comments below.

Presentation styles. You’ve completed your room reconnaissance and now you need to decide on your presentation style. Are you going to work from a word script or a little more casual structure talking points? You’ve been doing PowerPoints for a while this may not be a decision that you have to make as you’ve already adopted one style over the other for all your regular PowerPoint presentations.

But let’s talk about it. If you’ve not chosen one or the other. Let’s start off with talking about scripted presentations. This is where you compose every word of your speech. The pros. This will be your most elegant presentation never missing a point nor talking nonsense or messing up with grammar mistakes.

And the downsides it’s a lot of work to compose the full speech and then your face with how you’re going to present it. Do you memorize it? Read it from a screw? I don’t mean heads down reading from a script. That’s the worst. What I mean is to glance at your written speech from time to time and then look up to speak.

If you’re good at this and you do a convincing presentation, this is the best way to go. However, you have just okay a mediocre reading script will seem stiff and turn boring for the audience, which is a killer, so you have to be great which comes from practice. So what about structure talking points?

This is not ab libbing. You create additional notes of how you want to supplement your talking points. Work from these structured notes where you elaborate on each line. You should not be reading your bullet points. You need to add value and use slightly different phrasings of the words on your screen.

Reading bullet points is almost as bad as reading a script with your head down. What’s the upside? When done right this is very professional and natural. It takes less work for notes compared to a speech and not as time-consuming as memorizing or partially memorizing the structured talking points do require practicing to pull it off smoothly.

The cons.

You get lost in the presentation. You can miss key points. Stubble over your lines as you are filling in the gaps. Few people can successfully tap dance if they’re not prepared and your audience will detect poor preparation and assume you didn’t care enough to prepare properly. This is another disaster for your presentation and you can tarnish your professional reputation.

My personal choice for my life in-person meetings. I always use the structure talking points. And I like to interact with my audience and I will read the room by looking at the faces around the room as I give my presentation and I can expand on ideas that resonate or fly through them that do seem a very little interest.

It is the most flexible and engaging for me after all these years. I’m comfortable in front of a room of people. However, my YouTube training videos. I do work from a script. I find that a scripted PowerPoint training session is about 40% shorter compared to just you. Points. And with my scripts, I always hit the important points at the right time with the right words, but scripting my PowerPoint takes lots of time to create and practice and get ready to present.

What mode never to use? Ads with. Don’t create your bullet points and think you can wing it. You will ramble and forget important items. You need to ramp up to at least the structured bullet points and practice. Documenting your speech. So where do you document your speech or structured bullet points?

PowerPoint has you covered with the no section. With each slide you have a way to tie your talking points to a specific slide at the bottom of the standard slide view is the notes section. If it’s not showing do go up above and make sure you checkmark notes.

Drop your notes or speech here and it will follow you with each slide including in the live presentation mode. Or it will let you print out your notes for each slide. Find it nice to have paper to practice from and also with me up on the podium. Note I will often use Microsoft Word to draft my structured notes or speech, and then copy it to PowerPoint.

Oh, yes that green little rectangle that you see up there on the screen that is my live video green screen when I’m using my camera so I can get my presentation and you can see my video back and forth. As we’re doing it right now. Printing your notes. The printer notes switch to view and nose page to see how the notes will look when printed.

Format is needed, including lots of spacing and making large readable fonts. Remember that darken rooms are harder to read printouts, so adjust as in larger fonts. And when you want to print you do the normal printing route and then just make sure that you select note pages. For us for your audience.

Talk about printing PowerPoint provides a variety of options for printouts. There are formats for different needs but before you send it to the printer the side of your really need to provide handouts, even if it’s part of your business culture. Once you provide handouts, you have given up control the presentation.

People will leave through the slides no matter where you are on the screen. I find that I lose control of the pacing and the face-to-face interaction. I don’t like it. If you must consider handing out at the end instead of at the beginning. But what always that paper resources.

Okay. Bring those on the stage. But you need to know that there are different types of stages. You’re most likely scenario is going to be projecting the a traditional projector on a screen or a large TV monitor. Either way, you should know how to mirror or extend your laptop computer screen to the second monitor.

Window has a keyboard shortcut of Windows key control plus P and then you can make a selection on the mode. See the top corner for a preview. You probably don’t want to duplicate the screen, which is the same image on both screens, but instead extend. That way, you’ll have two screens or canvases to work from.

Once you choose that you need to figure out how to move your mouse to go from one screen to the other. It will be either on the right side or the left side on the Sexton screen. You want to test it out in advance so you know how to move your mouse back and forth to get between the two screens.

And if you do extend the extended screens and just mix up and showing the presentation on your small laptop screen and not the big projector screen. I’ll show you how to swap them in a few moments in the presentation mode. The first you need to consider the ability to use a variety of other formats for your show, which opens up new worlds of how and where to use PowerPoint to enhance your communication.

Laptops and tablets. PowerPoints are actually great tools for small meetings or one-on-one meetings. For my boss meetings, I almost always use PowerPoint to keep us focused and have a record of what I wanted to report. Also, I’m a huge PowerPoint fan. This is show. So I do have a portable small projector and a screen to take with me for any situation where there might not be a presentation setup.

More this later but as it consideration and it can be put together for about $500 or less. Lastly, if you add sound to your presentation, which I try to avoid as it’s just one more thing that can go wrong. You know how to plan to get the sound out to the room.

As always test it because your laptop sound system, most likely will be unsatisfactory. Controls. We’re about to get into controlling your slideshow for a while on the stage. Before we jump into the demo, here’s a quick summary of the wage, you can control the presentation. As you can see there are both mouse and keyboard techniques while it’s natural to want to use the mouse.

I personally prefer use the keyboard if it is at the presenter podium why I bet it quicker to hit the spacebar to advance the slide as opposed to grabbing the mouse locating the hotspot and clicking. But as you can see, you have choices.

One of my favorite keyboard shortcuts is the bee for blank the black and be again to bring it back this is great if you’re getting a deep into a discussion and you don’t need the slide to be on the display so all we do is hit the b as I just did here and hit the b to go back or do the same thing with w go to white and w again to toggle back.

I prefer the black blank screen as then has the show received of the background but white’s just a little too bright for me. There are three ways to start the presentation. The first way is to use the menu you go up to slideshow and then when you’re in the slideshow menu you can then choose from the beginning or if you’re in the middle of your presentation from the current location, the second technique is use a shortcut bar which you’ll see is hiding from up above and you just click the little slide screen icon to launch it quickly no matter which menu you’re on or from the keyboard you can use the shift f5 as a way to launch once again, no matter what menu system you’re in so any one of those will work.

I’m about to go into the presenter view, but you can’t see my computer’s second screen. Or over there I’m gonna be clicking on swap presenter view and slide view so that you can watch what I’m doing as I’m demonstrating so hold on for just a moment as I get in the slideshow piece and then we’ll do the demo so we’re gonna actually leave the presentation that would be on the big screen and switch on over to the presenter view which would typically be displayed on the laptop in front of you you can see here that we have a giant slide the top left corner this represents what you’re going to see up on the big screen on the right side is a smaller thumbnail, which is showing.

What the next slide will look like so you have a preview of what’s about to show up if I click the advantage to slide I’m not really advancing the slide I’m actually advancing to the next bullet point because I have these as stay structured bullet points one by one by one with the click you can see here this is how I actually swap back and forth between my presentation view and my actual presenter do so if you have a confusion with the way it’s showing up let’s go down advance the slide and we’ll see the bullet points going forward we’ll see on the right side on the bottom right is where the script would be on the right.

Review of the next slide the main screen and then these are some advanced tools for us to be able to use and then down here is the slide controls with the mouse or as we said before you can use your keyboard to move forward you could actually click inside the big slide area to advance or the little slide to advance all of those are hot spots, but you cannot click in the other black areas on the screen nothing happens there, so you need to use the advanced at those three different locations.

So let’s move on and take a look at some of our extra tools of how to best present if we look on the left side here the first set that I want to point out is the laser pointer tool if you really have to highlight because you did not design your slides to be as clear as you wish you could turn this on and as you move your mouse only in this hotspot area, it would show up on the screen once you leave that hot spot and disappears you can switch to the pen view which is not a favorite of mine because one I can’t draw very clearly and it’s not as bright once again, that’s a choice one that I hate were.

First is the highlighter because the highlighter just doesn’t demonstrate things any fair fashion it makes things look messy but it’s there not that you can’t move forward until you turn the tool off by going back and clicking on again now you use your mouse to move forward through your slides a tool that I do love is the magnifying tool now at the moment this is not showing on the big screen until I get to the spot that I want and click once I click that blows up on this screen and the big screen so everyone’s seen the same thing and then you can drag around the slide to show a variety pieces once.

Again you’re not going to be able to advance the slides until you turn the magnifier off one of the tools that I want to show you that I do enjoy using is the ability to jump back to the presentation to a different slide spot. I go down here. I will see all the slides of my presentation at the moment whereas light 18, if I had to go back to an earlier slide because someone asked something I could just click on it and then run through go back to the giant slide list and go back to my slide 18, so it’s a great way to navigate through your presentation without going left and right with your arrows to bring them.

Back up. When you’re done you could hit the escape key to go out but I’m going to swatch back and now we’re back in our presentation on the bottom left hand corner. I’m going to show you if you have just a single view you can still control some of those magic tools, they’re just highlighted on the very bond it’s very very faint but you see you can do your slide advances and your other advance tools such as laser pointer and slide jumper so with that let’s switch back and continue on with our demo.

Before you onstage make sure to turn off your email and instant messaging notifications. I can’t stress this enough having an email message toast notification pop up on the middle of a presentation is unprofessional. I’ve seen several embarrassing. I’ll always say for work messages pop up during a presentation thank goodness not mine also silence your phone, make sure your computer is updated computer updates in the middle of a presentations are bad.

I once had a presentation killed because the conferencing room PC had been off for weeks and when turned on it received an update in the middle of my speaking and it took 15 minutes to reboot. And yes, I never did get a chance to finish that presentation.

Also before your presentation make sure your batteries are fully charged including your mouse for long presentations, maybe a working brainstorm session consider plugging in your laptop, which might require a long power extension cable if you’re far away from a wall. Personally. I carry a battery that accepts a normal power cord, so I’m always ready for anything.

Practice practice practice. If you’ve done very little public speaking you need to do a Google search for public speaking tips as that goes beyond this video, unless I get enough for YouTube comments below for a separate training video just on that topic no matter what your experience level is at you do need to practice and practice and practice, practice in your head in front of somebody practice standing up to do a live dress rehearsal and yes standing up will impact your presentation know how to look around the room.

What you need to do with your arms how to read your notes while also addressing your audience, so practice and practice and practice. I cannot say that enough. Some protips. If there are models speakers consider having one master slide that can link to each person’s presentation a nice way to transition between each speaker as when one presses presentation exits, the agenda comes back ready for the next person use the hyperlink tool.

If your presentation is the only one in the meeting, get it loaded up first no one likes to watch someone vlogging onto their computer getting connected to the screen scrambling to find the file location before they get going. And lastly, if you are the whole show consider having a warm-up slideshow as simple as some nature photos rotating on the screen as people are getting settled maybe even adding music but make sure you find music that is group appropriate not just your favorite.

Spotify playlists. One last set of warnings. You’ve been given the assignment of the dreaded last slot of a long agenda. It’s a good chance you might get bumped or worse given five minutes for a planned twenty-minute presentation. Always think through an advance how you would do an abbreviate session.

Don’t just try to rush through all of your presentation slides. If I know in advance that I’m at the at the end. I will create a second slideshow with only the key slides and bring that along just in case. And I must mention again, turn off those pop-up notifications! And if your laptop is plugged in via HDMI cable, that means that your computer audio may also play out into the room.

So mute your computer volume before starting or if you plan to play audio such as a video and make sure to test the loudness beforehand.

Add-ons: are the useful? Pretty extra tools will not fix a poorly designed or delivered presentation, but people like tech toys. Are they helpful? Laser pointers.

I’m not big on them. You should design your presentation to highlight what’s most important as we demonstrated in an earlier training videos. And if you must highlight, why not just use the built-in laser pointer that we showed earlier? Bluetooth slide clickers can be helpful for laptop is in the back of the room or you don’t want to mess around using your mouse or keyboard to advance the slides.

I know presenters. That love to roam the stage and use their clicker to advance the slides that way they’re not tied to the podium. And what about a traveling projector kit. I depend on PowerPoint for most of my professional meetings as they keep me and my target audience engaged.

So, yes, I do have a small projector with the wireless displays and a mobile projector screen. I hate projecting on shiny but never completely cleaned whiteboards. Asking the YouTube comments below if you need suggestions for equipment, but like with all these add-ons, they present just another opportunity for a failure to get in the way of your presentation.

So be careful and test them out in advance and pack extra batteries.

So to recap, here’s our checklist. Scout off the room in advance. Make changes to your presentation to accommodate the layout of the room and the lighting. Decide if you plan to work off structure talking points, or you’re gonna write everything out in the script. Transfer your talking points into the speaker notes the PowerPoint.

So did I ever say practice? Because you should practice and practice and practice. Make sure all your batteries are charged up, bringing extra ones if needed and bring all the connected cables that are required. Take a deep breath. Smile. And go out and shine.

This is the last of our six-part training tutorial series on becoming a master PowerPoint presenter, if you follow from the start then you now have all the skills to be a PowerPoint power user and if you have not go back and find our playlist for all six lessons as always you can find a download of our checklist at our website power dash up dot training look for the link down below in our notes.

And if you have suggestions or questions leave them below in the comments and make requests for future videos. This was worthwhile like this video and subscribe to our channel those likes and subscriptions help support my efforts and encourages me to create more content for you for free. Also stay connected to see my other more specialized technique PowerPoint training videos.

Until then. Power up and go shine on the stage