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Five tips on how to present like Steve Jobs

Steve Jobs was many things, including a master storyteller. To present like he did, you need to create and stick to a particular focus. Here’s how.

Whenever I’m asked to speak to a group — whether it’s a large gathering like a college commencement, or a smaller one like those found at a local chamber of commerce’s monthly breakfast — I think of Steve Jobs, the master presenter. The co-founder of Apple didn’t just focus on statistics or technology in his communications; he sold the benefits of his company’s products. Take a quick look at Jobs’ keynote address introducing the iPhone during the 2007 Macworld Conference & Expo. Visuals were used to illustrate a point, not to fill space or entertain. And no matter how brief or long the Jobs-led dog-and-pony show, you left the venue with a full understanding of what was presented.

We can all take some communications cues from Steve Jobs. Here are five that I recently came across from Jim Confalone, co-founder and creative director of ProPoint Graphics, a New York-based professional presentation design firm.

1. Know the one critical point in your presentation — then make it clear. Steve Jobs recognised that the human mind couldn’t process a mountain of material in one sitting. Any information or data that isn’t driving a specific message can be a distraction that weakens the impact of your presentation. Use only visuals that support your one point.

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