Message focusing: Six-word story

One of our clients is an executive at an international bank, so he presents to global management quite often. To be able to give his message using a few well-chosen words, instead of dozens of data-heavy charts and graphs, would be revolutionary.

We took one of his 30-minute presentations, and focused it, and focused it some more, but we couldn’t get it down below 15 minutes. Something wasn’t right, we weren’t getting at the core of the message.

So we said, “Let’s see if we can tell it in 6 words.” We did, and it ended up being one of the best presentations of his life (his words, not ours).

Now he uses this technique often around the world. Imagine that, a complex financial services company, teaching itself to distill hundreds of complex charts and graphs into messages that can fit on the back of a napkin.