Steve Jobs at the WWDC 07

Image via Wikipedia

If you haven’t read, Apple hosted an event this morning (10/20/2010). Thousands of people were watching live the latest news from the company  and millions know by now that they’re releasing new laptops, a new suite of applications (called iLife ’11) and some of the features of the upcoming version of Mac OS, dubbed “Lion”.

But I’m not talking about that today. Instead, here are 5 things that I’ve learned from Steve Jobs since the initial launch of the iMac almost 10 years ago.
1. Believe in what you’re saying. Your audience can tell right away if you truly believe in what you’re selling them or not. They “smell” your confidence and decide within a few seconds (in what Malcolm Gladwell would call a “micro-slice”) if you’re worth listening or not. I’m sure you’ve received a call from a telemarketer in which appears that there’s a robot on the other side of the line.

2. Keep it simple and about your audience. Steve Jobs makes his audience smile, think, and overall, react with a “wow”. But it’s not because of the technical specifications of his products. It’s because of how he describes what you can do with his product. It is about being able to see your loved ones 3,000 miles away using your phone (note that Apple didn’t invent videoconferencing, they made it easier to use). I remember being in a presentation in which the speaker was talking a lot on how his product was superior, but he made it so complicated that it appeared that his product could bring more problems than solutions, I’m sure it’s happened to you also.

3. Be proud of your successes. Some people are ashamed of what they’ve accomplished; it appears that they feel like success is “not for them” or they are afraid to appear arrogant. When you’re trying to convince somebody, your job is to proof that you have the enough knowlegde and ability to do what you’re showing, one way is simply to remind people how well your past decisions have worked, how you raised the company’s profitability or how you simply made the world better.

4. Appreciate your team. You’re not alone in this world; chances are, you’re not the only one that made that great proposal (or presentation, or design, or work). Appreciate those that work around you, mention them by name and how thankful you are for their work (even if they’re not there with you).

5. Be humble. When things don’t go as expected during your presentation (ie: computer glitch, projector issues, bad connection), simply tell your audience that there’s a problem and move on. It’s not the end of the world and nobody will judge you (if they do, they’re probably not worth working with), plus you are already well prepared to handle the presentation without slides/network, right?.

You can see Apple’s presentation HERE
Here‘s another article on presenting like Steve Jobs.

If you want to learn more on how to make better presentations, I suggest you to check out Nancy Duarte‘s work (and books! they’re awesome) and Presentation Zen, from Garr Reynolds.

Do you have any suggestions on how to make better presentations? Shoot them over!