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The 10-20-30 Rule for Presentations

We all have faced the fear of public speaking at least once in our lifetime. Standing on the stage, in front of a power-dressed audience waiting to devour us as soon as we make a mistake in the presentation that we have spent hours and hours on getting perfected. Maybe even compromising our sleep to get that one presentation perfect. There are many tips and tricks on how to create the perfect presentation but this one DeckRobot is going to talk about is a gold one.

Coined by Guy Kawasaki, the rule of 10-20-30is the one and only tool to create excellent PowerPoint presentations. Each element of the formula helps presenters find a balance between design and conceptual explanations, so you can capture audience attention, emphasize your points, and enhance readability.

What is the 10-20-30 Rule for PowerPoint?

As mentioned above, Guy Kawasaki framed his 10-20-30 Rule for PowerPoint as:

-10 slides are the optimal number to use for a presentation.
-20 minutes is the longest amount of time you should speak.
-30 point font is the smallest font size you should use on your slides.

10 Slides Make the Presenter to Choose Wisely

Putting a limit on the number of slides you are allowed is a valuable constraint. Most people probably have 20, or 30, or 100 slides for a 1-hour presentation and this is a big no-no. Trimming the number down to 10 forces you to evaluate the necessity of each slide. Just like every element of your presentation, if the slide isn’t necessary, it shouldn’t be there. It also encourages a presenter to design wisely. Often a single well-designed diagram eliminates the need for 5 pages of text.

20 Minutes is Long Enough to Communicate Something That Really Matters

A constraint on your speaking time will force you to edit mercilessly. Making your audience laugh is a good ice-breaker but consider trimming the sidebar jokes. Also, cut the gratuitous “I’m happy to be here” pleasantries. Shorten the stories that aren’t essential to conveying your message. Trim the details that only 5% of the audience cares about. Trimming all the extras will let you communicate with precision and concision. Martin Luther King Jr. only needed 17 minutes to share his dream.

30-Point Font Guarantees Readability

Unless you have a big audience and a small projector screen, the 30-point font should be readable by everyone (except for those who have poor eyesight, but you can prepare handouts) in your audience.  Bigger is probably better, but the 30-point font is the ultimate solution. While a 30-point font still allows you to put too many words on a slide, at least your audience will be able to read them.


We at DeckRobot, applaud Guy Kawasaki’s efforts to use his influence to improve the presentation culture. The impact of his rule has inched a lot of presenters collectively in the right direction and has reached many people with his message.
While spending time on planning out the content of your slides you can create impressive company presentations, full of dynamism and creativity with DeckRobot in a few minutes. Whether working as a team or sharing the results with clients and colleagues, the automation techniques of the plugin will help you achieve results in less time, enhance your brand image, slide consistency, and build trust with your clients.