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Tips for Avoiding Presentation Disasters

You've slaved for hours, crafting the perfect PowerPoint presentation ... you've traveled hundred of miles to an unfamiliar location ... dozens (or hundreds or thousands) of eyes are upon you ... and you learn that your PowerPoint file has been corrupted!

Avoid this potential disaster and help ensure a successful presentation using these tips, courtesy of this article by Bruna Martinuzzi for the OPEN Forum:

  • PresenterKnow how to recover a corrupt PowerPoint file. Just before your presentation, you might find outthat you're unable to open your PowerPoint file, especially if you have a very large file. Print this step-by-step article by Echo Swinford, Microsoft MVP, and keep it with your presentation material, as you never know when you might need it. Third-party recovery tools are also available.
  • Pack a PowerPoint Viewer. If you're not using your own laptop for the presentation, make sure that the presentation laptop supports the version of PowerPoint you used to create your presentation. Avoid surprises by installing Microsoft's free PowerPoint viewer on a flash drive to take with you.
  • Don't rely on Internet connectivity. If you need to display information from a website, be prepared in case the Internet connection is interrupted during your presentation. It's a good idea to create a few slides with screenshots of all the pages you need for the presentation.
  • Know which movie file formats to use. This list from Microsoft tells you which video file formats will work with PowerPoint. If the file format is not there, you will need to convert your movie file to a format that PowerPoint supports.
  • Use your own remote. Invest in a remote you can carry with you, and don't forget the extra batteries.
  • Disable notifications and sleep mode. It's easy to overlook this step. Deactivate screen savers, Skype, instant messages, email alerts and other pop-up windows. They make you look unprepared. Also, disable the sleep or standby mode on your laptop. If you're using Windows 7, you can also use the Windows Mobility Center to adjust your settings to Presentation Mode.
  • Use several backup methods. Use two flash drives to back up the PowerPoint file, or consider using an online storage program such as Dropbox, iCloud or SlideRocket.

Click here to read the entire article.

Do you have a presentation coming up? Try some of these tips from one of our older blog posts to memorize your material, calm your nerves, and prepare for a successful presentation.

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