“A multi-facetted, talented speaker.”
“Engaging, provocative, exciting.”
“At once informative & entertaining.”



Paul Hughes is an internationally renowned speaker. Drawing live as he speaks along ten meters of paper, he helps individuals and organizations understand their role in this changing world by making the complex clear.


Through his Ten Meters of Thinking, a unique visual-verbal performance, he explores leadership, innovation and communication in order to stimulate individual and organizational development.



“The solutions of the past do not answer the questions of today – we must create new knowledge. By creating new knowledge, organizations can adapt to the changing environment around them. This is the behavior of successful organizations.” ~ Paul Hughes


Paul Hughes Ten Meters of Thinking Landscape S


Live Engagement: The unique format of Ten Meters of Thinking


The format of a Ten Meters of Thinking speech is designed to engage the audiences through the use of storytelling & the fact that Paul Hughes draws live as he speaks along ten meters of paper. By drawing live, a unique experience is created and the audience is captivated by the ‘reveal’ of the content – the viewer keeps asking ‘what happens next’ as Paul Hughes moves along the ten meters of paper. Additionally, drawing live enhances comprehension – by revealing concepts one-at-a-time the viewer is taken step-by-step through the content.
Wallpaper is my medium. Each roll of wallpaper is ten meters long – hence the name ‘Ten Meters of Thinking’. The patterns on the wallpaper are used as reminders of the patterns I’m interested in: patterns of knowledge, patterns of learning, patterns of action.








Knowledge in Action: The philosophy of Ten Meters of Thinking


The process of the creation of knowledge is the essence of Ten Meters of Thinking. Helping organizations to stimulate a culture of learning and habits of learning-by-doing is at the heart of Paul Hughes’ work: “By learning-how-to-learn and actively work to create new knowledge, organizations become resilient and can deal successfully with any new challenges that arise.”
“My philosophy is based on the concept that Knowledge is a human right. However, it is not just about the Access to knowledge, which much progress has been made, but more importantly its about the Application of Knowledge and the Creation of Knowledge as a human right. This is the essence of my work with Ten Meters of Thinking.”


The Art of Storytelling: The Science of Ten Meters of Thinking


Paul Hughes comes from a long tradition of Irish storytellers. This heritage created a unique form of storytelling: Paul draws live as he speaks to make the complex clear. Great stories have a timeless quality, they are outside of time and are therefore relevant to any moment in time. Stories allow the listener to step into a scenario, a situation, a context – the listener becomes the hero.
“Stories are best told in a timeless manner so the listener can decide how best they can be applied to a timely matter. So it is not about true stories. It is about stories that have a truth. Storytelling is best when it moves us from what has happened to what may happen.




Timeless Content, Timely Contexts:
Topics of Ten Meters of Thinking


Paul Hughes believes, “The answers we seek today lie in applying timeless wisdom to timely contexts. Working with clients he combines the timeless and the timely to create new knowledge. “While each organization is unique there are common themes and challenges that are faced by each,” he states. “The timeless wisdom that Ten Meters of Thinking offers address these common themes and the timely application addresses the unique aspects of each organization.”

Chose a Ten Meters of Thinking classic speech:



Or request a TAILORED SPEECH from Ten Meters of Thinking to address the specific challenges within your organization.




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Kilometers of Experience: Two Decades of Ten Meters of Thinking


In the last two decades Paul Hughes has spoken to tens-of-thousands of people across a wide variety of organizational, educational and governmental bodies, in more than 35 countries.


Clients and audiences have included: Coca-Cola, 3M Innovative Technologies, Renault Automotive, ABN AMRO Bank, Rabo Bank, T-Mobile, Vodafone, Statkraft Energy, MEXX Fashion, Yale University, New York University, Carnegie Mellon Qatar, University of Amsterdam, and TEDx events.

Download PDF of full client list

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OPUS Numbers: The DNA of Ten Meters of Thinking


The Ten Meters of Thinking OPUS nos. are the result of Paul Hughes’ work to clarify and simplify (Opus coming from the Latin meaning “work”). He says they are “the greatest quantity & quality of thought in the smallest space.” They can be seen as visual aphorisms that are short, sharp, shocks acting as accelerators of the mind & spurs to action. OPUS nos. are presented as timeless perspectives on present moments.
As a daily source of inspiration, triggers for conversation, and collected together they represent the extensive catalogue of work of Ten Meters of Thinking. Click on BackStage to see more.

“Often my OPUS nos. are designed to be suggestive – because I believe the best lessons are ‘not taught but are caught’. I’m interested in creating images that are not seen but rather are envisioned. This allows each viewer space to create their own meaning.”





Capturing Knowledge: The Artifact of Ten Meters of Thinking


Paul Hughes draws live as he speaks along ten meters of paper, producing from every speech a unique roll that captures the knowledge that was shared and created.

Every speech is different. Even if I give one of my classic speeches, such as The Circle of Leadership, it is never the same. The audience, the choice of Opus Numbers, and the setting, all influence the speech. Indeed Ten Meters of Thinking is designed to allow these influences generate a unique flow for each speech.
After every speech the ten meter roll is professionally bound into a book form – 39cm x 52cm, hard-cover, accordion fold – allowing for the artifact to be viewed as a book, or to be extended to its full ten meters length – hence preserving the integrity of the roll.

“There is a deliberate craftsmanship to Ten Meters of Thinking, that comes from a belief that the form of knowledge is as important as the content of knowledge.