You don't need to be a graphic designer to add clear, comprehensible images to your talk.
When you're in a meeting and somebody flips on a PowerPoint presentation, chances are you're instantaneously bored or annoyed. Most people probably wouldn’t mind if they never had to watch another PowerPoint every again.
But as a speaking coach for business executives, I know that PowerPoint presentations aren’t going away anytime soon—like it or not. They're just too easy to make and too widely used to go extinct in the near future. So in the meantime, the best we can do is make them as compelling and relevant as possible.
According to one recent survey, the top two reasons why people loathe PowerPoint presentations so march are that "the speaker reads the slides" and uses "full sentences for text." By now everyone should know not to read whole blocks of text to audiences verbatim. But it’s not enough to just convert them to bullet points, then present slide after slide of those, either.
If you really want to engage your audience and enhance your message, you need to use PowerPoint to tell a story—and you need to tell it as visually as possible. The good news is that you don't need to be a professional graphic designer (or even necessarily hire one) in order to do that. What might not look particularly sleek or aesthetically compelling can still be effective. Here's how to use imagery to get your point across and maximize your narrative impact, even if you aren't the most visually minded person.
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