What's your best PowerPoint tip, trick, or hack?

Here's my best PowerPoint tip:
Name screen elements on the “Selection Pane” for easy design layering and more 

What's yours? 

For some context, when I build eLearning courses, I use PowerPoint as my main tool for graphic design. If a design requires PhotoShop or Illustrator, I have my team do it. But first, I always try to design it in PPT myself. 

Over the past 17 years of using PPT, I continue to learn new things. Usually, it's from a tutorial or video of someone like Tom or David working some magic I've never seen. 

I thought it would be cool to get some feedback from the Articulate community and get everyone to share their single best PowerPoint tip, trick or hack.

And I'll even create a video summarizing it, kind of like the one below from an expert roundup post with some PPT experts & Articulate community members like Mike Taylor, Jeff Kortenbosch, etc: 

I look forward to seeing your tip! 



P.S. If you want the full tutorials from the video above, it's in a PowerPoint tips expert roundup that I released this week. 

2 Replies
Bryan Jones

Thanks David- I have an old tutorial I did on the selection pane in 2012, but it needs some updating before it's "challenge-worthy". I'll plan on re-recording it and putting it up on that PowerPoint tip challenge page in next few weeks. There are some great tips there by the way! 

My plan with this thread is to have people reply with a 1-line tip, then an optional 50-100 words on why they thought it was important. So I probably should have done something more like this in my first post:

Tip: Name screen elements on the “Selection Pane” for easy design layering and more


The Selection Pane is one of PowerPoint’s best kept secrets.

By default, it’s hidden in the “Select” menu on the “Home” tab.

I add it to my Quick Access Toolbar and keep the Selection Pane open anytime I’m working in PowerPoint.

Once open, you can name all the objects on the screen. This really helps when you’re trying to change the layering order of the objects, add animations, and more.

You can also hide objects by clicking the “eye” icon next to each object. That’s really helpful for revealing objects beneath that layer.

Without the selection pane, both layering and animations are next to impossible.


Now, can I can a special David Anderson PowerPoint tip, trick, or hack? :)