In addition to making sure your fly is zipped or the top button on your blouse is securely fastened, it’s a good idea to check all of your technology a few minutes before you’re scheduled to begin your presentation. This includes (but is not limited to):
- Screensaver: Turn it off. Same goes for any kind of power management software (ex. one that turns off the monitor after X minutes of inactivity)
- Pop-up notifications (email, other stuff): Turn them off. While we’re all glad you’ve been notified of the sale on electronics at Amazon.com, keep that to yourself, please.
- Run through your slides to be sure they’re fine and to make sure all your animations work well.
- Check the volume on your speakers or computer, especially if you have sound.
Take the time BEFORE your presentation to make sure everything’s working. Fiddling with recalcitrant technology in the middle of a presentation will destroy your credibility and completely derail your audience’s attention.
And have a backup plan in case something truly disastrous goes wrong…