Tag Archives: public speaking training

Presentation Skills: 7 Tips for Using Overhead Projectors

By Mike Aoki

Improve your results by using these 7 simple techniques during your next presentation:

1) Attach strips of thick paper or cardboard to the left and right hand sides of the projector glass to block out any excess light. This also provides a guide you can use to easily center your transparencies on the glass. (Safety note:  check that the paper or cardboard stays cool, despite the heat from the projector.)

2) Use tape to secure any extension cords that might cause you to trip while giving your presentation.

3) Before the participants arrive, find the sight lines for the projection screen. Have a volunteer sit where the audience will be. Then slowly move around the front of your stage or presentation area and have your helper note when you are not blocking the screen. Use masking tape to indicate those sight lines so you know where to stand during your presentation.

4) Face the participants, not the screen. Have a paper copy of the transparency in your hands so you can glance at it rather than turning and looking back at the screen while talking.

5) Use a pen to point to items on the transparency so you can remain facing the audience. If you turn to point at the screen, your back is to the participants.

6) If you want to unveil bullet points on your transparency, place a sheet of paper UNDERNEATH the transparency and pull it down the page to unveil each bullet point. Note: If you place the sheet on top of the transparency, the paper may shake or blow away due to the draft from the projector’s cooling fan.

7) Even if the projector does not work, you should still go ahead with your presentation. Remember, YOU are the best audiovisual!

Use these 7 simple techniques the next time you use an overhead projector and make a great presentation!

© 2010 Reflective Keynotes Inc., Mississauga, Canada

Related tips:
This article talks about “Death by PowerPoint.” This related story gives tips on how to energize your audience and eliminate disruptions. Here is a list of some popular presentation skills workshops.