Some PowerPoint presentations make you shudder or squirm with embarrassment. You might shudder at the copious bullet points or squirm at the weak graphics. Now this Solitary 101 PowerPoint presentation from the team at Solitary Watch does have a dependency on copious bullet points. And some of the graphics are a bit weak. But that’s not why we shuddered when we reviewed it.
Because it’s the content that makes you shudder.
The Solitary Watch PowerPoint presentation sets out to tell the story of solitary confinement in the prisons of the USA. And what a story it is. Would you have guessed that solitary confinement was first introduced as a gesture of humanity by the authorities faced with the deprivations of over-crowded prisons? That was then, of course. But the reality of today is much different.
They tell the story very well. Although we sensed that the bullet points could be dispensed with in favour of more punchy slides with a single point to each slide, perhaps.
More slides and fewer bullet lists. That’s the drill.
Many PowerPoint narrators become obsessed with the number of PowerPoint slides in their presentation. In this presentation there are 63 slides. But if the Solitary Watch producers had ditched more of the bullet point lists we’d have had more slides with a smaller word count on each…and a speedier narrative. That would make for a better story. Because that’s really important when you plan your PowerPoint content.
The imagery in the presentation is prepared well. But too many of the images fight for space with columns of bullet points…it’s a PowerPoint template problem. There’s really no reason why your PowerPoint pictures should share space with whole paragraphs of text.
But putting that aside the content of this presentation remains compelling.
You can find out plenty of tips for using PowerPoint effectively with PresentPerfectTM training. Join us for a scheduled course at one of more than 40 training centres. Or, of course, you can always opt for one to one presentation coaching at a time and place that suits you. Please don’t hesitate to get in touch.
The Principal Trainer at training business Time to Market. Based in Oxford, I run presentation and public speaking training courses, coaching sessions and seminars throughout the UK. Andrew Ivey on Google+
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