All great communicators share the common skill of being able to express themselves freely, connecting words and emotions during presentations. While it may seem that some people experience unlimited invitations to speak and present their message, the truth is that a lot of communicating, building relationships and networking has gone on behind the scenes for them to experience this kind of success.
Being in the “Top Ten” Doesn’t Just Happen
We all come equipped with great tools for expressing ourselves, so why do some experience more success when communicating than others do? What is it that makes some speakers so sought after?
Your voice, eyes, face and body give you unlimited ways to communicate. If you haven’t yet recognized the benefits of all the “equipment’’ you possess, you’ll be thrilled to see how these Ten Tips, consistently practiced, can help you to experience more success when speaking, presenting and communicating.
Unlimited Success Begins With an Experience
If your first public speaking experience involved getting up in front of your elementary school classmates, you may still carry the memories of that fearful and traumatic moment with you. (Young audiences can be some of the toughest!) The results of a bad speaking experience can follow us even into adulthood, threatening to keep us tongue-tied, incapable of realizing our full potential.
But even the worst experiences can be overcome with a little training and practice. To move past your past, stop the anxiety and regain control when speaking and presenting, you’ve got to:
- Face your fears
- Get back in front of an audience
- Use your experience
- Give your audience an experience
Ten Tips to Experience Unlimited Success in Communication
- An audience wants authenticity. They will see your message as unique, because you are unique. And most audiences won’t settle for anything less than the real you. It may require courage, but once you’ve learned to stop playing it safe and begin to offer your audience a genuine experience, you’ll actually begin building the relationship so necessary to your success in communication.
- Don’t hide. Face whatever it is you fear and choose to use that fear to your advantage. Remember: control what you can, let go of the rest and don’t let your ego rule you. (Let go of the podium, while you’re at it!)
- Introduce yourself and own who you are. Your name is the single most important element you present in selling yourself and your product. Your name iswho you are. Say it with confidence and you’ll give your audience the confidence they are seeking to be able to hear from you and respect what you are saying.
- Position yourself as an expert. Standing in a “fig leaf” position (hands crossed in front of your body) is a type of “protection stance”. The “reverse” fig leaf (standing with your hands behind your back way) is a way of holding on to yourself. Instead, use those hands to reach out to your audience and invite them in, expressing what you are saying with powerful gestures to emphasize the importance of your words.
- Avoid a disconnect. When you’re speaking, be sure that the feeling in your voice matches your words. For instance, when saying something like, “I really loved sharing this time with you,” are the words genuinely reflected in your face and body? If not, you’ve allowed a “split” to occur; an interruption has taken place between your mind, body and emotions, so your message and your delivery aren’t in alignment. This, in turn, can cause a real disconnect between your message and your audience.
- If you aren’t excited about who you are, what you do and your business – then who is? If you are excited you must animate your face and body to match that. Otherwise, your audience won’t know it. You must have the feeling, as well as the ability to express what you feel, when communicating with success.
- Embrace emotions. To really connect with an audience, you have to get a little emotional. You really can’t engage without emotions. Your emotions are an inherent part of your character and an important part of presenting YOU when facing an audience. The most powerful presentations are the ones that touch the audience, causing people to: Think, React, Feel.
- Be creative and colorful. If you were to describe yourself as a color, what color would you be? For instance, you might feel that your color would be Red or maybe you see yourself as Navy Blue. To demonstrate the power of color behind words, try the following exercise using the word ‘proud’.
- Stand in front of a mirror.
- Envision the color red.
- Say the word proud, letting the color red influence the way you say the word.
- Now envision the color Navy Blue.
- Looking into the mirror, say the word “proud,” letting the color Navy Blue influence your meaning behind the word.
How did the color affect what you said, how you delivered the word ‘proud’? Red usually creates a fiery, passionate presentation. Navy blue might make the speech more serious, while retaining a measure of warmth. You can even use different colors to emphasize individual words, like the color yellow to introduce yourself and maybe a deep purple to end your speech.
- Soft Skills, Intrapersonal Skills or People Skills. Whatever you call them, these skills are important building blocks in any relationship and relationship is important to successful communication. Soft Skills are about you and how you consistently conduct and present yourself in most situations. Starting with your body language and eye contact, ask yourself how you measure up.
- Are you at ease and comfortable in your own skin? Are you animated and enthusiastic, able to listen and engage with others?
- How do others really see you? Ask those you trust to answer the questions above about you and be willing to learn and ‘adjust’ where needed.
- Soft Skills aren’t hard – just necessary. Take the time to find out more about the many benefits of practicing these skills.
- Know Your Passion. Everyone who speaks and presents must (at some point) ask themselves “why” they do what they do. The “why” is actually your passion. If you’re passionate about what you’re talking about, it will be heard and seen in your:
- Body language
If your passion isn’t showing, it may be time to reconsider what you’re doing.
Your confidence will always be at its highest level when you are passionate about what you are doing. Confidence is a huge factor in the level of success you will realize.
- Knowing your passion, being able to identify why you do what you do, brings self-awareness.
- Knowing who you are allows you to be yourself, the foundation of the type of confident behavior that also gives your audience confidence in what you are saying.
Is there a great communicator within you, just waiting to present his or herself to the world? If so, these 10 Tips will help you experience more success with unlimited opportunities. Need more information on how to Stop the Anxiety when presenting and communicating? Click Here for additional free and beneficial tools.