A TED Talk slide deck is the antithesis of Death by PowerPoint. There are few (if any) bullet points, overly complicated slides, and speakers don’t narrate what’s on screen. Instead, the slides advance automatically behind the speakers and serve to enhance what they’re saying, not act as a teleprompter.
I recently attended a Boy Scouts awards ceremony and was very pleasantly surprised at how well the slides complemented the program in a TED-like way. As a Boy Scout leader, I’ve seen my share of poorly designed slides during training sessions. The slides used in the awards ceremony, by contrast, were cleanly designed with a minimum of type.
The Perfect Presentation
Three things contributed to making this presentation the Best. PowerPoint. Ever.
- Every time a speaker took the stage, a slide showing his or her name, position and photo appeared on screen.
- While a speaker was introducing an award recipient, photos of the honoree doing Scouty things appeared and faded out. At the end of the introduction, a slide with the recipient’s name and photo appeared on screen and remained while they received their award.
- Somebody was advancing the slides at exactly the right times to coincide with the action onstage. This person was very good at his job because I couldn’t tell who was doing it, which is exactly how it should be!
These slides were unobtrusive and helpful, the perfect presentation! Try this method of slide design and advancement next time you’re called upon to create a presentation for an event featuring many speakers!
Note: In accordance with BSA guidelines, the name and affiliation of the Scout in the photo have been changed.