Doing Presentation or Public Speaking without PowerPoint

Did this ever happened to you ?
The projector can not be connected at the last minute or the computer crashes just before your presentation. Imagine the scenario in multi-million dollar final stage of a RFP. I have experienced this once and trust me, it was a nightmare. Guess what ? My boss handled it like a charm and that is how I learned a life lesson about presentations.

Why Powerpoint :
Most of the presentations made nowadays are made with the help of PowerPoint. Even in the schools. In my days, it used to be blackboard and chalk.
Presentations or public speaking without PowerPoint is considered boring and it is quiet easy to fall into trap where it becomes monotonous. Add the point that there is no music, background image or any kind of visual aids. PowerPoint presentations usually provide a change for the audience in the presentation, and also give the audience some visual explanations to the points that are being told in the presentation. So without PowerPoint in the presentation, it gets little tricky.

How to leave PowerPoint behind :
1. No matter what, you have to be ready for presentation without PowerPoint. No short cuts.
2. It is very important that the presenter use some creativity in the presentation. Openings, jokes or just voice modulation.
3. Use props. Definitely use flip charts if available.
4. Learn and understand about the temperament and nature of your audience. Make it a point to tailor your presentation to meet the intellectual of the audience you are facing.
5. Set the right tone. Make a strong start and see, hear and feel what exactly it is that you want people to respond to.
6. Tell a story, or an anecdote that has universal appeal.
7. Practice as much as possible.
8. Remember the presentation in points, not word by word. For each point, have an anchor word written on piece on small paper half the size of hand.
9. Talk about the solutions for the audience and keep the presentation on topic. Do not get distracted. Look at the piece of paper if necessary.

Not everything can be done without PowerPoint. For example, what about complex technical architecture of a banking software when presenting to the client. For this have the basic structure in your mind. Explain it to audience by drawing on flip chart or board and send them details in mail later.

Remember that when you are not using PowerPoint, you are the visual aid of the presentation. People will then gain more interest in whatever it is that you say. Without PowerPoint, it is important that the speaker be more self-confident and well versed in his speech. For that to happen, just practice. Fake your confidence, till you make it !