I recently attended a presentation where the speaker was using automatic timings to progress through his PowerPoint slides. As the speaker was presenting, the slides automatically advanced so the speaker did not have to do so manually. The problem was that the slides would advance before the speaker was done talking to the previous slide. Not only did it make it difficult to follow but it was also a distraction as it was very obvious to the audience that it was happening.

Lesson learned for anyone using automatic timings in PowerPoint — rehearse your timings prior to presenting! You don’t want your slides to advance every two minutes when if it takes you need to spend three minutes on each slide.

Furthermore, rehearsing timings is easy to do so there is no excuse! From the Slide Show menu, click the Rehearse Timings options. This starts your presentation in rehearsal mode with a timer in the top left hand corner. When you are finished discussing the points on one slide, click the Advance button to move to the next slide. Once you reach the end of the presentation, click Yes to accept the timings.