Presentations on a Laptop: Avoid these IT pitfalls

You’ve booked the venue, a lot of people have signed up, you’ve created a great presentation on your laptop. You hope it goes OK…


Giving a presentation to a group is a daunting prospect to many. Besides the importance of logistical arrangements, capturing your audience’s attention, and providing value, IT is also something which can make or break a presentation. We’ve come up with some top tips to ensure all your preparation doesn’t fall afoul of technical glitches:


  1. PowerPoint If you create a PowerPoint file for your presentation, save the file as pdf and use a pdf viewer like Adobe Reader on the big day. PDF tends to be much lighter on processor usage than PowerPoint, so you are less exposed to your computer freezing or crashing if displaying a graphics intensive slide.
  2. Online Presentation Unless you’re absolutely sure that a strong signal is available at the venue, and the broadband is highly reliable, you should avoid this option. There are too many variables which can act against you here. Even if you use an internet based tool like Prezi, you can download the file to a drive beforehand to present without an internet connection.
  3. USB is your friend Laptops can be dropped, crash, or you might forget a charger just when you need it most! If the content is saved on the hard drive, you’re out of luck. However, if you save the presentation on a USB stick before the big day, you can present on another laptop.
  4. Pay attention to pop-ups! If you keep ignoring pop-ups that appear intermittently, they will certainly appear during your presentation, providing an unwanted distraction to your audience. Prevent this possibility by taking the time beforehand to look into the action required, instead of just ‘x-ing’ out of the pop up window, or by clicking ‘Ignore’.
  5. Outlook and Skype Ensure Outlook is closed, and Skype (if you use it) is set to Unavailable. You don’t want the embarrassing scenario of a room full of people knowing about your upcoming doctor appointment, or getting a call from your drunk brother in Sydney! Disable the internet connection just to be on the safe side.


And after all this, practice sufficiently, make good eye contact, don’t use too much content or too many slides, and you’ll do great! If you have questions about this or any aspect of your IT, call us today at 091 395413, or email us at

Written by Kevin Newell


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