A consultant’s presentation will more often than not comprise complex business concepts, loads of data and technical processes. These have to be communicated in a manner that grabs the audience’s attention and holds it for the duration of the presentation.
24point0 has 10 tips for consultants to make PowerPoint presentations that deliver the message effectively:
Experienced consultants know that while a presenter can make an impact through carefully chosen words, a presentation has to visually connect with your audience for them to respond to it. Slides should be neat and well formatted but the usage of appropriate templates will resonate with the viewer. Sourcing the right imagery can be difficult – image databases can take a lot of time to trawl through and you’ll have to spend time creating the template from scratch. To save you the time and effort, 24point0 has created a range of editable PowerPoint templates for various industries and business needs.
The right title slide will immediately establish the subject of your presentation, no matter how complex the content may be. The best title slides are simple – comprising a compelling visual and the topic of the presentation. The text and imagery should be complimentary and self explanatory.
As a consultant, you will often have to present complex concepts such as organizational relationships and strategy maps. It takes time and effort to create these visuals. While you can use PowerPoint’s SmartArt to generate generic images, 24point0 has created specific diagrams and graphics that illustrate concepts that consultants commonly use. You can buy and download org charts, synergy and strategy maps, and stakeholder diagrams. These require minimal editing to suit your requirements and are excellent tools that enable you to present information effectively.
Consultants often have to present data of a geographical nature. And what better way is there to present such information than by using a map as a visual aid? You can download maps as image files for free but these can be difficult to customize as you would require image editing software such as Photoshop to edit them. 24point0 has made it simpler for you – you can buy editable maps of different countries having various levels of detail. You can layer information on these versatile maps to show the geographical impact of business operations.
The days of using a two dimensional chart to show business growth or rise in profits are long past. Besides, charts overloaded with data can be too much to digest for an audience. If you are a consultant presenting such detailed, data driven information, remember that judicious use of animation can perk up the audience’s interest.
Remember to use only one animation effect per slide and keep the amount of data per chart to a minimum.
How can you, as a consultant, best present the cause and effect of a particular business decision to your audience? Or the before and after scenarios of an initiative? You can speak about it in a forceful manner but how do you drive it home with a visual aid?
The Transitions feature in PowerPoint is perfectly suited to illustrate these kinds of sequential ideas. Transitions such as wipes or fades between slides will have a strong visual impact on your audience – forcing them to sit up and take notice.
Do you have to present information on a business initiative that has positive and negative points? You can use PowerPoint’s SmartArt feature to convert bulleted lists to a two column layout but this makes for a dull visual. Information of this sort needs to be dramatically visualized in order to generate a more visceral response.
24point0 has created graphics that can make your audience sit up and take notice. You can buy and download customizable graphics such as Heaven and Hell or the Iceberg diagram that can effectively communicate the pros and cons of any decision.
Business processes and their impact can often be difficult for a consultant to communicate in a memorable manner. Humor is the ideal way to put across such information so that the audience will be able to recall it with ease later.
Putting tons of data in a table can often backfire as it can be information overload for the viewer. If you are a consultant presenting complex financial data, ensure that the most relevant information is instantly accessible and understood by the audience. PowerPoint’s Table style gallery has a number of tabular styles that you can use to judiciously illustrate your point. You can customize these to show the most important information to your audience in an instant. 24point0 has created a package of editable tables and graphs that can help you present data in a clear and concise manner.
Goal setting, defining priorities – these are concepts which all consultants regularly present. These can be illustrated as bulleted lists or as a generic graphic that your audience has probably seen hundreds of times. Representing them in new, creative ways can increase the audience’s interest in what you have to say.24point0 has specially created illustrations such as the Lighthouse graphic and Stairs diagram that can memorably present concepts of this nature. Buy and download these and edit them to suit your requirements.
The information that consultants have to communicate to their clients is complex and detailed. But by using the right visual aids and cues in PowerPoint presentations, you will help your audience understand the most challenging concepts.
We rescue Business Consultants from looming deadlines by providing ready made PowerPoint diagrams.
Chillibreeze's disclaimer: This is a contributed article and was published on Chillibreeze in January, 2010. The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author(s) and do not reflect the views of Chillibreeze as a company. Chillibreeze has a strict anti-plagiarism policy. Please contact us to report any copyright issues related to this article. The relevance of the facts and figures cited (if any) could change after a period of time.
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