17 May When English is not your first language, use P.A.R. to make sure you are understood and are speaking clearly.
Around the world, at this very minute, tens of millions of people are taking classes at language schools; some are using YouTube to learn to speak and listen, and of course, many are learning in their grade schools, high schools, and universities. Many of these people will be required in their careers to use English, so they are often very serious in their approach to learning. (more…)
4 May Rampant Redundancies
The excesses of communication in our time are reflected in our language. When verbal overkill is in, eloquence is out. And when was the last time you heard an eloquent speech? So we plod along carrying a sack full of unnecessary words.
Here are some common examples of ripe redundancies ready for burial. (more…)
Everyone wants to be appreciated. People want to feel and know they matter. Unfortunately, our culture in the business world leans more towards critique than appreciation and competition more than support. Knowing how to share authentic appreciation is an invaluable skill for strengthening relationships.
Here are four tips that help:
Be Prompt - It’s best to share appreciation immediately, if possible. If you wait too long, you are likely to overanalyze, script yourself, and lose authenticity. The more delay, the less authenticity. Another risk with delay is the person you are appreciating may not remember the action/event details, and therefore, your appreciation won’t have its intended impact. (more…)
If you find yourself “getting into the weeds” by using long sentences when sharing information or opinions….You might be a rambler!
If your friends and colleagues dread hearing you speak…. You might be a rambler!
If your clients, customers, or direct reports seem uncomfortable when you talk.…You might be a rambler!
If you find your neighbors or even family members keep avoiding your talks…. You might be a rambler!
Many of our clients are brilliant and interesting people. Even if you are all these things…You might be a rambler! (more…)
Whether it’s a team effort or a one-person responsibility, a presentation can make or break a contract or client relationship. This brief article gives you three critical elements required for preparing a successful presentation.
If you provide a product or a service, there is truth in the old adage that “products don’t sell, people do.” Certainly, there are isolated exceptions, but person-to-person contact is invaluable for most businesses. In this framework, the business presentation holds a unique and critical place. It is an essential part of the public relations, marketing, and sales for any company, large or small.
Psychologist Jeff Thomas and I agree on the structure of the mind. The mind and the difference between the brain and the mind have been the focus of conjecture, controversy, and intellectual consternation for many centuries.
It is generally accepted that the brain is the repository of the things and stuff that we are exposed to during our lifetime. There may not yet be general acceptance of what exactly gets stored, where in the brain it is stored, or how it is retained, but we can accept that the brain takes in and holds the information from our life experiences. In addition, it’s possible to actually see the brain. We can measure it, weigh it, touch it, and know for sure that there is such a thing as the brain.
I read an interesting article in The Atlantic based on a recent speech by the Pope. He reflected on the importance of face-to-face communication in a world that has gone online. He said:
“Text mediums deprive us of cues like facial expressions, posture, and vocal inflections. As a result, they are especially ill-suited to figuring out what people who aren’t adept at writing believe or intend to express….To interact with people in person is to see how complicated most of us are.”
While the article’s author analyzes this through the lens of what makes a good journalist, the lesson is important for all of us who are on Zoom a lot.
Read the article here.
Communication excellence, speaking clearly and conveying ideas with impact, is highly associated with career and organizational success.
Yet, healthcare and technology leaders face a major challenge: simplifying complex and technical information so that others “get it,” buy-in, and take action for best results.
Here are some truths about transmitting knowledge and influencing others outside your field:
- Knowing your topic does not equal speaking clearly about your topic.
- Your listeners likely don’t care about your topic as much as you do-sorry!
- Anytime you speak, whether one on one or to a crowd, in person or virtual, in a formal or informal setting, you are a “presenter.”
- Preparation, not Desperation: Strategize and plan, no matter how knowledgeable you are.
Now that virtual presenting is here is stay, keep in mind that your oral delivery is more important than ever. Our colleagues, clients, and anyone else who is listening at home or in their office are most likely multitasking. Some of us have two monitors that allow us to be watching/listening and doing multiple tasks simultaneously. Since a few of your listeners may not be directly looking at the screen, your voice is what captures their attention. Therefore, I am coaching clients to incorporate “vocal variety.” Vocal variety is when you choose a specific word or phrase to add vocal emphasis to convey a meaning. A very easy way to add vocal variety is to increase your volume. (more…)
10 Feb Answering Off the Cuff
#1 Thinking on your feet
When I meet potential clients, their needs span many areas, but I want to talk about one I find almost everywhere I go. “How can I be better at speaking off the cuff?” Easy! Well, honestly, it is easy, but to explain how it’s easy, let’s talk about what you are asking for.
Speaking off the cuff, thinking on your feet, or any other way you describe it, comes from the idea of speaking with limited notes in a time crunch. You don’t get to take a lot of time to fully plan a response. You must deliver at that moment! So, the way you can be ready for anything is to prepare ahead of time. (more…)