How I set up my conference presentations to get maximum engagement

It is officially conference season! Are you prepared for your presentation?

It’s okay! How you set up your conference presentations matters. I am going to share how I set up my conference presentations to get maximum engagement, and take some pressure off of it for you.

During my first presentation, I was SO NERVOUS! I was 13 weeks pregnant and honestly could not tell if I was nauseous from the pregnancy or the nerves.


It was probably the nerves.

I want to take all of that away for you and share exactly how you can set up your presentations easily, without fuss, and get the maximum engagement from the crowd.


How I set up my conference presentations to get maximum engagement.

  1. Write your outline. Use sticky notes to write your main points, then arrange them in the order that seems best. During presentations, it can often feel like you are trying to make a cyclical or overlapping topic in to a linear slideshow. Being able to arrange and rearrange your content easily will help you wrap your brain around the best way to get the ideas across. Don’t be afraid to omit topics that don’t truly fit in to what you are talking about.

  2. Decide on a template. I would stick to a template either in google slides/powerpoint or from a website. I love Slides Carnival for their templates. Each of these are accessible and easy to create in to handouts. You don’t want to create one in Canva and have it convert as an inaccessible PDF. TRUST ME. It takes HOURS to get it all squared away again.

    1. Make sure your font is at least 30 point and without serifs.

    2. Make your colors high contrast.

    3. Check out Web Accessibility Initiative for more information on making your slideshow accessible.

  3. Keep it engaging. Visually: Keep it multimedia. Use icons, images and videos when you can. Show slides with a video. Less than 3 bullet points/ sentences in each slide. Make it entertaining and interactive! Use Presentain software for people to contribute to polls. Presentain will also email everyone a copy of the slideshow with your audio, which is pretty cool. It also allows you to use your phone as the clicker, so you can move around the room easier.

If you are interested in presenting with the International O&M Online Symposium, we would love to have you apply!

Applications are due 9/28!