POWERPOINT OR A PENCIL IN YOUR EYE?

Zzzzzzzzz another boring powerpoint presentation. No doubt we would all rather stab ourselves in the eye with a pencil than have to suffer this fate again. Unfortunately the reality is we all suffer from having to look at them, and also present them.

Surely there must be a better way… or at least some help and inspiration to better refine them and make it more interesting for all parties concerned.

Here are a few top tips to think about when you are next pulling together your slides.

Subject
What are you going to address and does the audience care about it?

What is your role
Leader, Expert, Cheerleader?

Audience
Are they there because they want to be, or have to be and what will they learn?

Format of presentation
What story are you telling?
To make it more interesting please use multimedia, illustrations, photos etc, not just text, graphs or tables.
Stick to one idea per slide for biggest impact

Takeaway
Is it clear and concise, and are there any next steps?

And remember like anything with good taste…. Less is more!

Here are some great examples for inspiration – http://www.slideshare.net/mrcoryjim/smoke-the-convenient-truth-5602255

CARD TRICKS

I am old school and love receiving a business card that is completely out of the box and wows me. Business cards are one thing that you can afford to be creative on as after all, they should leave a lasting impression. And if you receive one that you think is great you are less likely to throw it away as soon as you get back to your desk.

Visiting cards first appeared around the 15th century in China and were used as a means for aristocrats to announce their arrival to whomever they were visiting. This tradition then moved on to nobles in France and England and the business card was born!

Things to consider if you are on the market for new business cards:

Materials and Effects – Most are printed on card stock, but you may want to consider a coating, a embellishment, embossing, or specialized material (eg wood)

Size and Shape – Be creative! They can be any size and not just rectangle, think round edges, cut out shapes…

Printing Methods – Digital is the most popular, Letterpress will give you better quality and Engraved will give you another option.

Colour & Style - There are unlimited options with some imagination. Four colour process is standard and recommended. Try and keep a similar look to your website and let the card reflect what it is you actually do.

But if you are opposed to business cards you may like to try out some new alternatives.

LinkedIn has the CardMunch app that digitizes an analog card. It captures the image of a business card, recognizes it and then saves it on your phone as a contact. It also integrates that person’s information from his or her profile on LinkedIn.

You can also create a digital card using Cardcloud that can be delivered by email.

But one important tip – Try to learn the basics of foreign customs regarding presenting yourself and the exchange of business cards before your next overseas work trip, otherwise it could be over before you have even started your meeting!

LET ME ENTERTAIN YOU

Suggestions are that large corporate events are on the rebound, and bookings of entertainment for such events are on the up. If you are searching for a singer for your next where budget isn’t an issue, look no further!

The Rolling Stones are the most expensive act to hire charging a whopping $9.8 million to perform, ahead of Sir Elton John and Kylie Minogue who only demand $3.9 million to play. However, Elton donates all earnings from private concerts to his charity, the Elton John AIDS Foundation, rather than pocketing the huge sums. US songstress Christina Aguilera was named the fourth priciest performer at $3 million a show and US star Jennifer Lopez can each demand $2 million.

A good musical act can also turn it around and become a business too. The most well-known “corporate band” has to be the Black Eyed Peas. From Coors to Levi’s, Honda to Apple, Verizon to Pepsi, brands have padded the group’s video budgets, underwritten its tours and billboarded band members in prominent places.

And the award for the most expensive event ever…. Shanghai World Expo. Officially it was $4.2 billion to host the event, but the real figure is closer to more than $58 billion.