Wednesday, January 12, 2005

The 30 Second Rule

I have been listening to an interview a few months ago where the interviewee exposed what he called the "30 Second Rule". Don't bother asking me for the name of the guy: I don't remember it as, except for that bit of information, the interview was quite dull. And maybe it is thanks to the contract between the noteworthy "30 Second Rule" and the otherwise boring interview that I remember about that "30 Second Rule". But I must apologize, I am wandering and by now you must be curious about that "30 Second Rule". Are you?

Ok, then I will tell you about it. So it goes: when you speak to one or a few people, picture a traffic light. As you start talking, it is green during the 30 first seconds; your audience is listening and curious to know what you have to say. It is yellow during the next 30 seconds; the level of attention gets lower, people already see where you are going. Or they don't, in which case they would like to ask you to get to the point. When the light is yellow, you should think about stopping to let other people speak. After 1 minute the light is red; unless you see sparkles of interests in the eyes of your audience, stop right there, don't even think about adding one sentence.

Think about it, wouldn't you like other people to follow this rule? And now think a little more; shouldn't you follow this rule?

1 comment:

Robert said...

Thats very true what you are saying. As John C maxwell puts it:
First impressions are the most important part of the conversation. In the first 30 seconds you should try and compliment them. "Make them feel great, Make them feel like a million bucks"

Not the exact words, so don't quote me on them. :)

The thing that people want most in life is to feel important. If you can accomplish that in the first 30 seconds, you will probably have their attention for the rest of the conversation. It makes them feel important.
They will then listen to you attentively.

With practice, it gets easier to do. I've used it for a while now, and I've noticed that when I walk into a clients place where I've been doing this, they cheer up and cant wait for me to speak. The stop with whatever they do to speak to me.