Communication is everything at any workplace! However, it isn’t always easy, especially for new employees. Presentations and public speaking are some of the communication-related activities that daunt employees the most. Recent graduates, in particular, hesitate to deliver presentations as they struggle to navigate expectations and wrap everything up in a time-efficient manner.

Studies indicate that a significant number of people would do anything to avoid delivering a presentation. This is why it’s crucial that organizations have presentation and communication skills training programs in place to instill much-needed confidence among employees. Additionally, the 10-20-30 presentation rule is a game-changer. Read on to explore its meaning and significance in fast-paced business environments.

  1. How The 10-20-30 Rule Came Into Existence

  2. What Is The 10-20-30 Rule?

  3. Why Give Harappa A Chance?

How The 10-20-30 Rule Came Into Existence

Guy Takeo Kawasaki, an American marketing specialist and venture capitalist, had heard several pitch ideas from entrepreneurs. After listening to hundreds of people, he concluded that most pitches lacked substance. To help entrepreneurs pitch more effectively, he came up with the 10-20-30 rule of presentation.

Guy Kawasaki’s rule transformed the presentation landscape and is often considered the holy grail of PowerPoint. It helps communicate valuable information over a short period of time, without overwhelming the audience.

What Is The 10-20-30 Rule?

In a nutshell, Guy Kawasaki’s 10-20-30 is a collection of three golden principles. A presentation should be:

  • No longer than 10 minutes

  • No longer than 20 slides

  • No less than 30 font size

While Guy Kawasaki’s 10-20-30 rule primarily applies to entrepreneurs, it can also apply to any presentation that requires reaching an agreement. Here are the details of each component behind the method.

Rule—10 Slides

The first tenet of the 10-20-30 presentation rule is that a presenter should limit the number of slides to 10. By keeping the presentation short and to the point, it’s easier to retain the audience’s attention. Typically, an audience doesn’t want an information overload and doesn’t have an interest in unnecessary details. Moreover, the 10 slides shouldn’t have too much text. Highlighting the important points is more effective.

Rule—20 Minutes

The 10-20-30 rule highlights the reality of the modern world: decreasing attention span. While rapid digitization has been a boon, it has also impacted people negatively. Therefore, it’s difficult to hold people’s attention and expect them to listen till the end. The 10-20-30 rule identifies this challenge and encourages presenters to not extend beyond 20 minutes. The time limit also provides an incentive to trim all the unnecessary details and come straight to the point.

A good 20-minute presentation has the following structure:

  • Introduction: 1 minute

  • Problems/Questions: 4 minutes

  • Main Body: 13 minutes

  • Conclusion: 2 minutes

Rule—30 Font Size

While the substance of the text is of utmost importance, a powerful visual can enhance the quality of presentations. In addition to hearing, an audience also likes to pay attention to the details presented on the screen. Therefore, good readability is necessary. Small font size makes it difficult, which is why Kawasaki proposes a minimum font size of 30 . This makes the text readable, whether the person is sitting in the front or at the back of the room. Additionally, bigger fonts will prevent presenters from adding unnecessary details and help memorize key points quickly.

Guy Kawasaki’s 10-20-30 presentation rule received several criticisms as many believe that it’s no longer relevant in today’s business environment. Nevertheless, it helps individuals cover the key aspects of presentations. It takes into account the psychology of listening and attention and encourages people to make cleaner presentation slides. If nothing, the 10-20-30 rule of presentation will help win over an audience.

Why Give Harappa A Chance?

While rules are instrumental in bringing discipline to one’s way of work, there must be behavioral shifts for achieving transformative outcomes. Harappa’s Young Talent Bootcamp is designed to help organizations build must-have Thrive Skills among employees. Help early professionals maximize their potential and navigate everyday professional situations with confidence. The program pivots on several crucial learning outcomes that’ll help employees to raise the bar at work. A communication toolkit will help them enhance their active listening and speaking skills. They’ll not only embrace feedback but also implement them to address any skills gaps they might have. Help new employees drive peak performance through this unique blended learning experience. Schedule your demo today!


Explore Harappa Diaries to learn more about topics such as What Is Outcome-Based Learning, The Complete Guide To Distance Learning, What Is The Kirkpatrick Model and Skills Of A General Manager that will help organizations tap into their employees’ potential

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