handling mistakes ppt presentations
December 11, 2021

Mistakes Happen: How to Handle Slip-ups in Presentations

To err is human; everyone makes mistakes. But if you handle mistakes in presentations with confidence, your presentation will end smoothly and successfully.

Admitting that mistakes happen and have to be dealt with is the first step in creating a recovery plan. By practicing how to handle mishaps in advance, you’ll be well equipped to deal with an emergency.


Ask yourself what mistakes could occur and prepare yourself

Preparing for a presentation is not just about going through the slides and checking equipment. Considering any potential mistakes that could arise is key to delivering the best presentation possible. Ask yourself how you can proactively address your mistakes with a positive attitude and what mishaps might occur in presentations.

Go through the individual points of your presentation and think about how you can answer questions from your audience. Even elements that you may not consider very important can lead to problems and mishaps.


Consider the little things

Thinking beyond the presentation itself will help you avoid any unnecessary mistakes. Be on time. Being late is the first serious mistake you should avoid. First impressions are everything and being late to your own presentation will make you look unprofessional. Plan in advance how long it will take you to get to the venue and factor in other issues, such as whether there are enough parking spaces or if public transport is running on time that day.

Also, think back on any mishaps that may have happened to you in past presentations. As we all know, you learn from your mistakes – so use them to improve yourself!

handling mistakes ppt presentations


You need to radiate confidence, particularly during presentations that are extremely important to you or your company. The right preparation will allow you to remain calm during your presentation and show your audience that you have everything under control – even if you slip up.


Avoid or solve technical errors

handling mistakes in ppt presentations



The days of straightforward presentations are over. Nowadays, virtually all presentations involve PowerPoint or other media which require the right equipment. This technology is one of the most frequent causes of mishaps (e.g., projector or microphone failure) in presentations. Presenters need to stay on top of it all to ensure a smooth presentation.

Take the time to check on-site equipment before you give your presentation. If, despite all your preparation, you run into technical problems and don’t know what to do, ask the audience if someone tech-savvy can help or if someone is familiar with the problem.

Sometimes, no matter what you do or who helps you out, the equipment just doesn’t want to cooperate. In that case, be prepared to deliver your presentation without PowerPoint so you can continue confidently.


Use back-ups

Back-ups can be lifesavers for presentations. It may be worth packing a second charger or even a second laptop. Having a paper version of your PowerPoint on hand is also a great idea.


When does it make sense to repair equipment?

If an important piece of equipment fails during your presentation, the first thought is often to fix it. If the issue is minor – think broken laser pointer – it makes more sense to just continue with the presentation.

If your tablet or laptop battery is dead, announce a short break and connect your device to the power supply.

For more complex technical problems, notify the building management or a technician.


The classic: How to handle a mental blackout with confidence


Although it happens to everyone, it can still be really embarrassing. Losing your train of thought in a presentation is something every dreads.

When it happens, it can often help to take a breath and pause before you continue. Smile openly at your audience; this will make you appear more confident. Even if this pause seems like an eternity, your audience won’t notice as much, and it will give you a moment to calm your nerves.

Summarizing what you’ve already shared with your audience can also help you recover from a mental blackout. This gives you the opportunity to remind your audience of the most important points and gives you the time you need to get back on track.

And if you still can’t remember where you left off, ask your audience for help. No one will hold it against you if you ask, “Where was I?”.


Use composure and humor to communicate strength and confidence

handling mistakes ppt presentations


A mistake isn’t a problem until the presenter makes it one. For example, no matter how big the goof up, a smile always communicates a sense of composure and shows that you’re not so easily thrown off your game.

Although a mistake or technical snafu during your presentation may seem like the end of the world, handling it with humor will keep things light and upbeat. There’s not much you can do if the microphone breaks down or if it’s too loud outside the meeting room. Sure, it may disrupt your presentation but if you treat the situation with humor, you’ll diffuse any tension or discomfort you and your audience may be feeling.


Mistakes in presentations happen. Handle them with confidence and score points with your audience!

handling mustakes ppt presentations


No matter how professional and experienced you are, mistakes and mishaps happen to everyone. Follow our tips and tricks and keep calm during your presentation. Your audience will keep following your presentation and focusing on your content, regardless of any mishaps.

Whatever may come, try to remember the following tips for mistakes in presentations: Don’t lose your sense of humor; it will always trumps irritation and impatience. So, even if something goes wrong, avoid harsh or snide remarks. Instead, stay friendly and positive. After all, every problem can be solved somehow!

If you have any questions about preparing a PowerPoint presentation, feel free to contact us at [email protected][email protected].

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