Guillermo de la Puente

Tell-Show-Tell Method


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Since I learned about the Tell-Show-Tell method, I’ve used it almost every day at work. It’s a recipe to articulate explanations successfully that involves showing the usage of a product. Its beauty lies in its simplicity and effectiveness.


  1. Tell. Explain what you’re going to demonstrate.

  1. Show. Show the flow of the product visually.

  1. Tell. Restate what you just showed and deliver its value or benefit, so that it’s clear why the listener should care.

This technique is explained with great detail in the book Demonstrating To Win! by Bob Riefstahl, among many other useful tricks on how to demonstrate complex software solutions. Thanks to Will Foley, a coworker of mine at Splash, for recommending it to me.

I love using this technique on other contexts, besides demonstrating software products, like teaching or explaining ideas. Beginning to use this technique can be as simple as starting with “I’m going to explain you [idea]” and finishing with “Now you know about [idea] and it’s important because [value]”.

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