As a young graphic designer, Emma Bannister had dreams of working for Disney—designing movie posters, theme parks … maybe even animated characters.
But life had other plans. Instead, Bannister landed a job at Deutsche Bank in London, designing Microsoft PowerPoint presentations for fund managers.
Do I hear a thud of disappointment? Not really. “I found it a strangely satisfying creative challenge,” Bannister says. “Even back then, I found PowerPoint to have surprisingly rich design features, and I got really good at understanding what these financial wizards were trying to say but saying so badly—and helping them say it better.”
After a move to Australia, Bannister saw the same challenges in other industries. When she took maternity leave in 2006, she had the idea to create a PowerPoint makeover business. What was intended to be a side hustle while home with a baby snowballed into Presentation Studio, a Sydney-based consultancy that delivers presentation pizzazz to Australia’s biggest banks, telcos, mining companies, and pharmaceutical giants.