New communicators are people like Steve Jobs, Bill Clinton, Tony Blair and Oprah Winfrey: quite a mixed bunch. To be honest I am not sure if I am comfortable with Tony Blair because I always found him a little too smarmy and false. However, he was very successful at making a connection and influencing his audience. In looking at him we can see some of the techniques discussed here a little more obviously than with the others. I think this is because he seems to be trying so hard to implement them and be natural, that he comes across as a little false.
Looking at the others we can see a truer natural approach that seems genuine and lets the audience engage with the speaker. Think of Jobs at Mac World and the way he stood up on stage, with no notes, and spoke from the heart. The audience loved it, and consequentially loved what he was selling.
The worst communicators are those who read from a speech. If you want to do that just stand up and hand out a written copy to everyone. They can read it and get all the facts - they can even take it home and refer to it later.
That is not what speaking is about. Speak to influence; speak with passion, authority and confidence. If you know what you are talking about, and you should before you stand up, then you can influence people to your POV.
By all means, if the information you have is technical, give a handout at the END (never during or the audience will start reading that and not be listening to you).
New communicators are not really that new. It is just that so many people from the last century read speeches, that we became accustomed to the "old" style of speaking. It is so dry and passionless that audiences just tune out; especially in the modern age. You have to compete with short attention spans and multi media. If you lose your audience's attention they will be on their smart phones Tweeting and catching up on emails before you get a chance to have any influence.
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Below this article you will find an extract from my book "Master Public Speaking in 7 Days". This part discusses the way our brains have evolved to protect us and a side effect of this is to block out messages from people we do not trust.
Whether we like it or not we are continually judging people by their appearance and the way that they behave. The old adage "never judge a book by its cover" is all well enough but we have evolved to do just that. In fact we are very good at judging on appearance and that is what has kept our species out of danger in the wilds for millennia.
If you want to get your message across and you want to have influence, first you have to get passed the gate keeper. Once you are trusted your message then has a chance at being heard and acted upon. Without that trust your audience will not even hear the words that you speak...
Our evolution has been long and fraught. Species have come and gone and we are developed from many. Our brains have evolved as well, but we still have many instincts that we developed for survival in the wild.
You can get the first 2 chapters of "Master Public Speaking in 7 Days" by filling in the form on the home page of this website. Click Here Now
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