Jan Schultink is an internationally recognized designer of high-stakes presentations (investors, conferences, sales). His background is actually not in graphics design; he worked for almost a decade with McKinsey & Company advising Fortune 500 CEOs about strategy. This makes him one of the few people in the world with the rare combination of skills: visualization talent and business understanding. Jan also created SlideMagic, a presentation design tool.
Writing “Pitch It!”
There were already good books on presentations but there was not a practical guide on how to design a presentation step by step. Jan wrote “Pitch It!”, originally for iPad but nowadays available as a webpage. The book is also focused in specific and very practical business contexts: how to raise money from investors, getting an idea approved by the board, etc. Pitch It! is Jan’s own notebook which he continuously keeps updating.
SlideMagic and business presentations
PowerPoint was created in the 90s and is a tool that always gave people far too much freedom to design slides. But as very few people understand design, the result is that people end up doing bullet points. Jan created a tool to make slide design easier and quicker. Also, there were no tools focused in business presentations design. SlideMagic has a different philosophy.
Top Benefits of SlideMagic:
- Zero-learning curve to create a slide even if you’re an awful designer.
- The templates are easy to customize and they don’t break down.
- The templates are based on proven, useful, real-life business situations.
Recent trends in presentations
People are investing a lot in collaboration. The other trend some apps are focusing on is how to design slides on mobile devices. However, Jan doesn’t believe that the presentation design should be done on a mobile device which has a small screen and limited user interface.
Jan believes that something is missing in any presentation app. This involves going one step before designing the slides: a tool to design the story flow that will help you afterwards with the selection of the slide template. Just a concept today, but it could become part of SlideMagic in the future.
Presentation Zen by Garr Reynolds
Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die by Chip Heath and Dan Heath
Routine to Shine
Always listen to and observe others’ body language. People don’t do it enough. That will help you to know how well you’re communicating your message during your presentations.
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