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Do you underestimate the power of presentations?

Hanna Phan PresumePresentations power is only limited by our imagination. Here’s the story of a woman who believe that a presentation can change her life (and it did).

The story of Hanna Phan is a story of creativity and determination. She was looking for a job. Not any job. She was looking for her dream job. She decided to use an online presentation and social media to reach the CEO of the company.

The result? She got a call the same day from the CEO and she now works for SlideRocket. The beautiful part of the story…it was her birthday.

I was charmed by her use of a presentation, I ask her for an interview.


1. Why did you use a slideshow for curriculum vitae?

I decided to use SlideRocket to make my Présumé (“presentation resume”) for two reasons:

First of all, I was frustrated that the traditional resume could not showcase who I really was, including: my personality, creativity, energy and passion for presentations. Resumes are one-dimensional and really only allow for a one-way conversation—there’s no engagement or connection you can build with the reader or audience.

Secondly, I wanted to demonstrate my proficiency and creativity in using their product.


2. What was the thinking, the structure, the logic behind your slides?

Originally, it began as a “love letter” directed at Chuck Dietrich, CEO of SlideRocket.  I knew that he’s a busy man, so I thought to myself, if I had 30 seconds with him, what would I say? I had to get straight to the point and relay the message of why SlideRocket needed me as an employee, and why I wanted to work with their company specifically.

I wanted the design to portray who I was right from the beginning, so I kept it clean and upscale—black and white with splashes of color.  After I had the story down, I added some music (light and cheery) as a final touch. I also utilized SlideRocket’s auto-advance feature in an attempt to keep Chuck engaged longer than 30 seconds—I didn’t want any opportunities for interruption.


3. When did you post your CV?

I actually never formally posted my CV, although I was later asked for it as a formality when going through the hiring process with SlideRocket. (I’m not sure if anyone actually looked it though.)

If you’re referring to when I posted my Présumé, I actually tweeted Chuck directly by responding to his “SlideRocket is hiring” tweet and included the link to my Présumé—it was August 1, my birthday.


Tweet-Chuck Response4. What happened after you post your CV on SlideRocket?

A few hours after I tweeted Chuck, I received a tweet back from him (see image), followed by a phone call. I found out after the fact that he had viewed my Présumé from 30,000 feet in the air, on an airplane en route to New York.


5. What advice could you give to people doing presentations?

Advice for Job Seekers:

  1. Stay very focused on your target; otherwise, your passion may not shine through in your communications with them.
  2. Research the company extensively. I know we’ve all heard this before, but it’s really true—Google them, watch them on YouTube or Vimeo, follow them on Twitter, like/friend their fan pages on Facebook, check out their blog, subscribe to their newsletters, read their press releases, etc. You can gain a lot of insight into their work culture and what the company stands for if you do that extra research.  On the other hand, if you’re unable to find any information about them online, that also speaks volumes about their culture. Ask yourself: do I still want to work for them?
  3. Be prepared to fail. The worst that can happen is that they say no. Get up, learn from it and try again.
  4. Here’s the confidence-booster you should start with: They need you, they just don’t know it yet—let them know what they’re missing if they don’t hire you.

Advice for Creating Presentations:

1. Know your audience. Do your research and find out everything you possibly can about them. (See #2 above.)

2.   Don’t get too fancy. Keep it simple so your message does not get lost to unnecessary distractions.  Decorations are simply distracters.


6. Here’s the chance to plug your employer. Why did you chose SlideRocket and why should we use it?

I chose SlideRocket as an employer for many reasons. Here are my top two:

1.  Their start-up culture. After doing my in-depth research, I felt like they would be a great fit and a company where I truly wanted to grow.

2. SlideRocket is a game-changing product that I believe in. I knew I could get excited about this product every day. I wanted to help make it even better with my skills and experience.

You should use SlideRocket if:

a) You want to stand out.

b) You’ve just had it up to here with using PowerPoint.

SlideRocket makes it easy to create powerful presentations in very little time. You can integrate dynamic features (YouTube videos, surveys/polls, twitter feeds, etc.) directly into your presentation without worrying whether it will work when you have to deliver it live, or when you send the link to someone. The fact that SlideRocket lives online in the cloud, means that you don’t need to worry if someone has the wrong software or uses an incompatible browser. SlideRocket is just so dead simple to share—it’s just a link!

This leads me to my absolute favorite features of SlideRocket:

  1. When you discover a mistake in your presentation after sending out your link, you don’t need to hit the dreaded “Recall” button in your email (which doesn’t actually work anyway)—just make the edit and save, that’s it! The link you sent will automatically be your most updated presentation. It actually happened to me! I spelled “SlideRocketeers” incorrectly, but fortunately, no one knew because I had caught my typo quickly enough and changed the presentation. SlideRocket’s automatic update saved me from any embarrassment! Phew!
  2. I also love the analytics features, which meant that I knew right away when Chuck actually viewed my presentation!  So while I was waiting nervously to see if he would respond, I could continue on with my day and just wait for an email notification for when my Présumé was viewed. As I’ve received over 10,000 views of my Présumé around the world, I eventually turned that notification off. 🙂



Presentations can have a dramatic effect on our lives and on lives of others when it’s well done. Hanna Phan is an inspiration for all of us who are doing presentations.

Thanks Hanna for accepting to share your story.


Original « Présumé » on SlideRocket.



Posted by
 Denis François Gravel

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