People who know what they’re talking about don’t need PowerPoint

From The Late Great Steve Jobs:

 “People who know what they’re talking about don’t need PowerPoint”


“I wanted them to engage…”
Even when I first started working at Apple in 2001, I overheard someone in my department say that you should never show up to a meeting with Steve Jobs with a deck of slides. Jobs’s aversion to people using slides in meetings was well known inside Apple. “I hate the way people use slide presentations instead of thinking,” Jobs told biographer Walter Isaacson when describing meetings upon his return to Apple in 1997. “People would confront a problem by creating a presentation. I wanted them to engage, to hash things out at the table, rather than show a bunch of slides. People who know what they’re talking about don’t need PowerPoint.” Jobs preferred to use the whiteboard to explain his ideas and hash out things with people. Former Senior Vice President of the iPod Division at Apple Tony Fadell confirmed Jobs’s disdain of slides. “Steve preferred to be in the moment, talking things through,” Fadell says in Isaacson’s book. “He once told me, ‘If you need slides, it shows you don’t know what you’re talking about.'”

There is a difference between a keynote and ballroom style presentations  and a meeting around a conference table. Most productive meetings are a time for discussion and working things out, not simply going through a bunch of slides. Each case is different, of course, but in general consider saving the multimedia for the larger presentations, and never resort to using slideware and other forms of computer-generated visuals simply out of habit.


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