How to Add Two or More PowerPoint Animations to One Object

Many people use PowerPoint animation sparingly—probably to make text animate while showing up on a slide or even for column charts, where individual columns animate. But did you know that you are not limited to the animation effects available in PowerPoint? You can actually combine one or more animations to happen at the same time for the same slide object, and thus create your own unique animation effect!

Follow these steps to learn more. We used PowerPoint 2016 for Windows, but these techniques work in most versions of PowerPoint released over the last ten years.

1. Select any object on your slide such as a shape. For our example, we selected a Rounded Rectangle shape, as shown in Figure 1, below.

Figure 1: Select any object, such as a shape

2. Now add an animation to this shape. We added a basic Entrance animation called Fade (see Figure 2).

Figure 2: Add a Fade animation

3. Now deselect the shape if you want. Then select the same shape again, and now add an Emphasis animation called Spin (see Figure 3).

Figure 3: Add a Spin animation

4. Now play the slide. If you click once, the Fade animation will play. Click again and the Spin animation will play.

5. Wouldn’t it be better if both animations played together? Yes, this is possible—to do so, access the Animation Pane and set both animations to Start with the With Previous event (see Figure 4).

Figure 4: Play animations together with the With Previous event

6. Now also change the Duration of both animations to match (see Figure 5).

Figure 5: Use the same duration for both animations

We showed you how you can make two animations play at the same time. You can similarly combine as many animations as you need.



Tip: PowerPoint has four animation types: Entrance, Emphasis, Exit, and Motion Paths. You can combine any of these animation types but you cannot combine Entrance and Exit animations. Why? Well, that’s because you cannot enter and exit at the same time.


About Geetesh Bajaj:

He is an awarded Microsoft PowerPoint MVP (Most Valuable Professional) for over a decade now. He has been designing and training with PowerPoint for 15 years and heads Indezine, a presentation design studio and content development organization based out of Hyderabad, India. Geetesh believes that any PowerPoint presentation is a sum of its elements–these elements include abstract elements like concept, color, interactivity, and navigation–and also slide elements like shapes, graphics, charts, text, sound, video, and animation. He has authored six books on PowerPoint and trains corporate clients on how to plan, create, and deliver presentations. For more information on Indezine and Geetesh, click here.

5 Tips For Breathing Life into Boring Technical Information

By Nick Morgan

People often ask me some variant of the following question:  OK, so I get the idea that presentations should be interesting, and speakers should be passionate.  But I’m an accountant (or engineer, scientist, nuclear physicist, doctor etc.) and what I have to present is highly technical and data-heavy.  How can I possibly make that interesting?

My answer always begins with one of the best college lecturers I ever heard.  Yes, he was a professor of accounting. He made profit and loss fascinating by talking about the early days of the Wells Fargo company, complete with cowboys, Indians, gunfights, and desperate men riding their horses past human and equine endurance to get to safety.

There was plenty of passion, and interest, and I learned something about double entry bookkeeping.

It can be done.

But seriously, my questioner will continue, how do you make it interesting?

It’s not easy. I’ll grant you that. But it is possible. What it takes is passion. If you’re thinking to yourself that you have a whole bunch of dull stuff to get across to the audience, then you’re already thinking wrong, and you need to start differently.  Here’s how you do it.

1.  First, realize giving a presentation is all about persuasion, not information.  The first step is to figure out what you’re really doing – what are you trying to persuade the audience of?  Once you know that, you’re ready to get started crafting a presentation.  Summarize that in one sentence – e.g., “I’m going to persuade the audience that double-entry bookkeeping is essential to making modern commerce work, because it allows us to measure, understand, and control what we’re doing.”

2.  Ask yourself, what is the problem that the audience has for which my information is the solution? Talk about that problem first, and I guarantee you the audience will be interested.  Then they’ll want to hear your solution. That’s when it’s appropriate to give them said information.

3.  Don’t give out information, give examples and case studies.  Case studies and examples bring dry information to life.  Data about a study of drug efficacy is boring – even that much sounds boring – but seen through the eyes of one potential patient, it has a completely different aspect.

4.  Use vivid metaphors and analogies.  If your information is highly abstract and you can’t figure out a way to turn it into a case study or an example, give us a metaphor. What is it like?  Is it like music, or medicine, or cowboys and Indians?  Use your imagination.  Great teachers understand this and give their students metaphors and analogies to help them begin to understand the field and the theories they must master.

5.  If all else fails, turn the information into a contest for the audience.  In the ’90s I taught public speaking at Princeton.  I had a certain amount of the history of rhetoric from the ancient Greeks to get across, because I thought it was important.  Imagine trying to teach pre-law students about anadiplosis, epanalepsis, and paronomasia!  The students were not interested and I despaired of getting 100 kinds of tropes and schemas into their heads.  Until I thought of Jeopardy.  I made the whole thing a Jeopardy contest (what is anadiplosis?) and the students woke right up.

Years later, the same students would shout “What is synecdoche!” across the campus at me when they saw me.  I gave out Princeton t-shirts I had designed for the occasion, and the students cheerfully put hours in committing the terms to memory.  Just about everyone gets cranked up when there’s a competition involved.  It makes your information more memorable.  Do remember to give out prizes.

With a little creative thought, any topic – any topic – can be made riveting.  I guarantee it.  Failure to make a presentation interesting is a failure of imagination.  Send me your worst topics and let’s get going.  We have a whole world of boring presentations to spare audiences.

About the Author:

Dr. Nick Morgan is one of America’s top communication theorists and coaches. In his blog he covers modern communications from a variety of angles, including the latest developments in communication research, the basic principles and rules of good communication, and the good and bad speakers of the day. His passion is to connect the latest brain research with timeless insights into persuasive speaking and writing in order to further our understanding of how people connect with one another.  For more information on his company, visit

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