When you want to give a presentation using a projector, the worse thing that can happen is not being able to make it work properly. There is nothing like a room of people staring at you waiting for you to make it all work.

Personally I have never experienced this, but I observe many people having issues connecting their laptops to projectors. This got me to wondering; is there anything I do different that increases the likelihood of a successful presentation?

I thought about all the steps I take to ensure success and I want to share them with you. Remember, all of this happens the night before my presentation;

  • Charge my laptop 100%. Laptop wont work if the battery is dead.
  • Pack my charger. My charger lives in my laptop bag, but I make sure it goes back¬† after I charge it.
  • Install all¬†available updates. This includes, windows, antivirus, office, etc. I don’t want anything popping up on my screen during my presentation.
  • Reboot my laptop (2) times. I want to make sure there are no updates that got missed.
  • Pack my extension cord. Maybe the cord they have isn’t long enough or maybe its damaged, but I will not let a $5 cord tank my presentation.
  • Pack my HDMI and VGA cable. I don’t know what type of video adapter they have, but i’ll come prepared with both.
  • Test my PowerPoint presentation. I want to make sure it works and the file is on the desktop where it is easy to find.

The last thing on my list isn’t something I do each night, because I do it when I fist get a new laptop. I change the power settings to never sleep, hibernate, or turn the screen off when plugged in. This prevents my laptop from shutting off while I am answers the many questions I often get.

Most modern projectors and TV’s have 2 video connections you can take advantage of. You’ll need at least one of theses for a successful presentation. The image below has both VGA and HDMI.