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Steal the Show summary

Michael Port

From Speeches to Job Interviews to Deal-Closing Pitches, How to Guarantee a Standing Ovation for All the Performances in Your Life

4 (271 ratings)
17 mins

Brief summary

Steal the Show by Michael Port is a guide for public speaking, offering tips on how to prepare, engage with the audience, and create memorable performances.

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    Steal the Show
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    Performing in public can be terrifying, but learning to harness your natural ability to act can help you overcome your fears.

    Picture these three scenarios: a manager attends a make-or-break performance review with his superiors; an up-and-coming corporate hotshot gives a speech at a conference attended by her industry’s movers and shakers; a young entrepreneur pitches an ambitious business idea to a group of grizzled venture capitalists. 

    If your hands are clamming up just thinking about putting yourself in any one of those situations, don’t worry – you’re not alone. Lots of folks find stepping into the limelight a pretty terrifying experience. To put that into perspective, Googling “public speaking” gets you 90 million hits. At the top of the list: advice on how to keep nerves and anxiety in check.

    So what makes public speaking so scary? Well, it’s a type of performance. Whether you’re interviewing for a job or giving a talk, you’re essentially acting – presenting, staging and playing a part to impress, delight or move your audience.

    Chances are this is something you’ve never been taught how to do. And that explains the familiar sense of dread. Public performances take us out of our comfort zone. No wonder we worry about fluffing our lines and ending up with egg on our faces! 

    But here’s the thing. As odd as it might sound, you are an actor – all of us are. Whether you’re aware of it or not, you’re constantly assuming different roles in different settings. When you use social media or describe yourself on a dating site, for example, you’re presenting yourself in a particular light. In other words, you’re performing. The same goes for the ways in which you might change your behavior when Skyping a colleague or talking to your boss at a holiday party. 

    This is good news – it means you already know how to play a part. The trick is to leverage that intuitive understanding of performance and take it to the next level. Think of it as a crash course in acting. But this isn’t about landing a part in your local drama group – it’s about learning a methodology you can apply in your professional life.

    Take it from the author, a professional actor who transitioned into the corporate world. Today, he’s a best-selling writer and a highly sought-after public speaker and consultant. That was a pretty big leap, but his acting background gave him an advantage: it allowed him to authentically play different roles and inspire confidence in others. 

    In the following blinks, we’ll learn how to follow his lead. 

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    What is Steal the Show about?

    Steal the Show (2015) is a practical guide designed to help performers scared of the limelight to settle their nerves and up their game. Drawing on author Michael Port’s experience as a professional actor, these blinks are packed with tips and hacks to help you persuade, inform and motivate. Whether you’re presenting your company’s latest figures in a meeting, pitching a new business idea or interviewing for a dream job, these strategies are guaranteed to help you make an impression. 

    Steal the Show Review

    Steal the Show (2015) reveals valuable techniques for public speaking and performance, helping readers shine in any situation. Here's why this book is a must-read:

    • Packed with practical tips and strategies, it equips readers with the tools they need to captivate an audience and deliver compelling presentations.
    • Through real-life stories and examples, the book shows how to overcome stage fright, build confidence, and connect with others on a deep level.
    • With its focus on developing authenticity and presence, it ensures that readers not only deliver powerful performances but also leave a lasting impact.

    Best quote from Steal the Show

    The irony is, most of us have to perform even though we dont see ourselves as performers.

    —Michael Port
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    Who should read Steal the Show?

    • Anyone who wants to become a better public speaker
    • Anyone who’s struggling to find their true voice and needs some help
    • Anyone who wants to live more honestly

    About the Author

    Michael Port is a writer, speaker and consultant. He studied acting at New York University and appeared on popular television shows such as Sex and the City, Law & Order and The Third Watch. Port is a regular contributor to Entrepreneur magazine and the founder of the School of Heroic Public Speaking. He’s also the author of The Contrarian Effect and The Think Big Manifesto

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    Steal the Show FAQs 

    What is the main message of Steal the Show?

    Steal the Show emphasizes the power of performance and teaches techniques to captivate audiences and make a lasting impact.

    How long does it take to read Steal the Show?

    The reading time for Steal the Show varies depending on the reader's speed. However, the Blinkist summary can be read in just 15 minutes.

    Is Steal the Show a good book? Is it worth reading?

    Steal the Show is a valuable read for anyone looking to improve their speaking and presentation skills.

    Who is the author of Steal the Show?

    Michael Port is the author of Steal the Show.

    What to read after Steal the Show?

    If you're wondering what to read next after Steal the Show, here are some recommendations we suggest:
    • 60 Seconds & You’re Hired! by Robin Ryan
    • Pitch Perfect by Bill McGowan and Alisa Bowman
    • Presentation Advantage by Kory Kogon
    • What Color is Your Parachute? by Richard N. Bolles
    • Secrets of Dynamic Communication by Ken Davis
    • Speaker, Leader, Champion by Jeremy Donovan and Ryan Avery
    • The 3-Minute Rule by Brant Pinvidic
    • How to Tell a Story by The Moth
    • The Orderly Conversation by Dale Ludwig and Greg Owen-Boger
    • The Art of Public Speaking by Dale Carnegie