Presentation Skills Training

If you create a number of PowerPoint presentations, you’ll no doubt invest a lot of time in getting it just right, with a well rehearsed script. What can go wrong?

Here are some simple and effective tips to keep PowerPoint under control, and you looking even more professional so there isn’t any distraction from your key messages.

Man in blue business attire showing profits cartoon presentation

It’s all about how you present it

Effective Tip #1:

Start your PowerPoint on screen by simply pressing F5 …it saves chasing the mouse around the screen for the tiny icon bottom right.

Effective Tip #2:

Press ‘N’ or left click on the mouse, or page down, or enter, or simply the down arrow to move to the next slide.

Effective Tip #3:

‘P’ or backspace or left or up arrow or page up to return to the previous slide.

Effective Tip #4:

If you would like to bring the focus back to you and stop the audience staring at the screen? – click ‘B’ to black out the screen, ‘B’ to return to where you were.

Effective Tip #5:

W’ …does the same with a white screen.

Effective Tip #6:

Accidently ended the show mid way through? – click shift and F5 to return to that slide.

Effective Tip #7:

Here is our favourite… you’ve got an appendix of 5 slides that are there just in case. You want to show slide 16 but ending and scrolling through the whole deck gives the game away and looks kind of silly. Make a physical note of the appendix slides; 15 – chart about something, 16 – example product mock up etc etc. To show slide 16, type 16 and hit enter, make a mental note of where you were then hit say 6 and enter to return to the original place in your presentation.

To find out more about how you can become an even more professional presenter see our Presenting Effectively training course outline.  You can also find further information in our Ultimate Guide to Presentation Skills here.

Which tip do you like the most or want to share one of your own? Please share by commenting below.

Where next?

Andy Palmer

About Andy Palmer

Andy started at the coal face with eight years in food retailing. Prior to joining MBM he then spent five years in the supply base in positions of category analysis, category management and account management. He works as part of the team enabling suppliers to UK supermarkets to secure more profitable wins through people development. He specialises in Category Management Training and is a qualified HBDI practitioner.


  • Bradley Hutchins says:

    Had no idea of numbers 4-7. Really useful tips and I aim to put them into practise with some very important presentations I have in the coming weeks.

  • Harry Masih says:

    Had very little knowledge of these shortcuts prior to this, but in future I will certainly be using them. I particularly think the ‘W’ and ‘B’ are great as it engages the audience a bit more in conversation.

  • Jacob Donohoe says:

    Perfect! Lots of little things which can drastically improve the professionalism of my PowerPoints! Very well spent time reading this. ++

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