The PowerPoint Back of the Room Test | Media Training | Public Speaking | Presentation Skills

Question: have you ever looked at your own PowerPoint deck from the back of the room?

I understand that you are busy and you have to hurry to get all the legalities in order so that your presentation looks great from up close. That is not, however, how most people are going to experience your PowerPoint deck.

I have been to countless conventions where I have finished speaking early and gone around to the back of the room to see the other presenter pontificating. While the energy and tone of the speaker may be fine, but the only thing that I can see is the top half of the PowerPoint slide. The screen goes down to the floor, the projector is projecting the deck on it, but only the front row can see it in its entirety. This is not the problem of the audience, this is a problem for the speaker.

That is why it is important for you to plan ahead and determine if people can really see your slides from anywhere in the room. Why would you go into a speech where you will be showing people things when you know that no one can see what you are referring to? People will only end up scratching their heads or checking their email.

So you are not ready to give your presentation unless you have projected it on the screen and gone to the back of the room to see whether or not everyone can see it. That is why I often only project a single image or idea on a single slide so it is visible in any case to anyone.

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