10 Microsoft Powerpoint Tips and Tricks

Working on a presentation? Here are our top 10 tips to work with Microsoft Powerpoint.

microsoft powerpoint tips

1. Create a Custom Background Size

Powerpoint background size can be changed. Simple choose File -> Page Setup and type the height and width of the background you’d like and click OK.

2. Using SHIFT

You can do a lot of things while holding the SHIFT key. Here are some of our favourites:

  • Hold down the SHIFT key when drawing a line to get a perfectly straight line.
  • Hold down the SHIFT key when drawing an oval to get a perfectly round circle.
  • Hold down the SHIFT key when drawing a rectangle to get a square.
  • Hold down the SHIFT key while pressing Enter to get a blank line without a bullet.
  • Hold down the SHIFT key to select multiple objects on a slide at the same time.
  • Hold down the SHIFT key while resizing a graphic to retain the same proportions in the resized graphic.
  • Hold down the SHIFT key while pressing F3 to change the case of letters.

3. Using CTRL

As it is with the SHIFT key, the CTRL key can do a lot of wonders too. Here are some of them:

  • Hold down the CTRL key plus the HOME key to go to the first slide
  • Hold down the CTRL key plus the END key to go to the last slide in your presentation
  • CTRL + D to duplicate (make a copy of) the selected slide
  • CTRL + E to center a paragraph
  • CTRL + M to insert a new slide
  • CTRL + N to create a new presentation
  • CTRL + W to close a presentation

4. Inserting Special Symbols

You might be using some of these well known symbols:

  • To insert the copyright © symbol, enter (c)
  • To insert the Trademark ™ symbol enter ™
  • To insert the registered ® symbol enter (r)

5. Adding Notes

You could add Notes which will not be present while doing your slideshow presentation. This is especially useful in giving PowerPoint presentations online.

To enter notes on a slide, type text in the pane below the slide. Graphics and other objects can also be placed on the Note Pages.

6. Printing Handouts

To save printing, click on File -> Print and change from “Slides” to “Handouts”. Choose the number of slides you want to appear per page (for example three slides per page or six slides per page).

7. While the show is running…

While giving your slideshow presentation, press the F1 function key to see a list of hidden features.

8. Save Slide Components as an Image

To save a slide as an image, simply solve the problem by saving each slide as an image, and select all objects by holding down SHIFT. Right click, then select Grouping -> Group. Right click on the whole group, then click on Save as Picture.

9. Add a Summary Slide

Quickly add a summary slide, which is created from the titles of all other slides. Click View -> Slide sorter and select the slides with the titles you want. Then, on the Slide Sorter toolbar, click the Summary Slide button.

10. Grid and Guidelines

Click CTRL + G to display the Grid and Guides dialog window. This way, you can turn on one vertical and horizontal guideline to be dragged into position as an alignment aid.

Want to learn more about working with Microsoft PowerPoint? The Institute of Management offers an Advanced Microsoft Powerpoint course. Visit our website to find out more.