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Best Practice

Create Slide Content Templates Before Beginning Production

This best practice is a strategy to help you "work smarter, not harder" when creating consistent content in presentations; and it goes way beyond just having a set of standard company templates for charts. It is the often-overlooked process of:

  1. Assessing the content needed for a presentation – look for sets of various charts that will be repeated throughout the presentation (e.g., a set produced for each product line), series of charts that present data in the same format (e.g., different data, identical visual appearance), bio pages, contact pages, etc.
  2. Identifying how many contributors will be involved. Many contributors means a more controlled presentation-development process is needed to produce a consistent-looking presentation. But even if there are only a couple of people producing the presentation, it still makes sense to create templates for the sets and series of charts.
  3. Developing and distributing section templates to contributors, including instructions on how to complete them.

It may seem like a lot of prework; but if you value consistency within your presentations, this process will actually save you time (and, therefore, money). It is better to have a solid blueprint for a presentation before production begins than to try to make everyone's charts consistent after you have received them.