The surest way to stifle an idea is to write a longwinded presentation deck about it. PowerPoint, Keynote, and Prezi are powerful tools, but the power comes in how they’re used. A weighty presentation deck can get in the way of the idea itself.
The classic Mark Twain quote applies equally when writing a presentation — “I didn’t have time to write a short letter, so I wrote a long one instead.”
Born out venture capital work as a recipient of many of PowerPoint deck, Guy Kawasaki has been advocating the 10/20/30 Rule for a decade. As he put it:
“I am evangelizing the 10/20/30 Rule of PowerPoint. It’s quite simple: a PowerPoint presentation should have ten slides, last no more than twenty minutes, and contain no font smaller than thirty points. While I’m in the venture capital business, this rule is applicable for any presentation to reach agreement.”
Here are a few related cartoons I’ve drawn over the years.
“Idea Camouflage“, March 2009
“Death by PowerPoint“ December 2011
“PowerPoint-itis“ November 2016