I was surprised to see just how much time Jobs spends preparing for a keynote presentation:

Steve starts his preparation for a keynote weeks in advance, reviewing all the products and technologies he might include.

Steve usually rehearses on the two days before a keynote. On the first day he works on the segments he feels need the most attention. The product managers and engineering managers for each new product are in the room, waiting for their turn. This group also forms Steve’s impromptu test audience: he’ll often ask for their feedback. He spends a lot of time on his slides, personally writing and designing much of the content, with a little help from Apple’s design team.

The article (Behind the magic curtain) goes on to describe how Final Cut Pro came to be demoed. I always thought that Apple marketing did most of the heavy lifting for Jobs’ keynote preso’s. But it looks like Jobs himself is driving most of the effort.

One of the things I’ve been working on recently has been improving my own presentation structure and delivery. I know with myself that I HAVE to practice before hand to do well. It’s nice to see even superstars like Jobs need to practice. One interesting blog I’ve been watching as of late has been Presentation Zen. There’s some excellent articles there for tips on interviewing. A great article compare and contrasts Gates and Jobs presentation styles. There’s other articles on the Lessig Method, the Takahashi Method and notes from Tom Peters among many others. Definitely recommended reading.


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