Saturday, 8 February 2014

How public speaking can improve your career

Hi All,

So, you have a job. You are doing okay. You are earning. But you would like to be promoted. You would like to speak up at meetings more. You want people to listen to you. You would like to deal with a few difficult people at work. Or speak to the boss. Even ask for a promotion? Follow the tips below. Some of them are sure to help you be more successful in your career.

1 Be a great listener. That may sound surprising. If you want to be a great communicator (speaker), you need to listen to what others, especially important people at work are saying. Let them know you listened. Mention to them that you heard their idea and like it (if you do) and say why. You may want to ask them more about their idea and help them implement it. That is great communication. Also, repeat an instruction to make sure you have it right.

2 When you do speak up, say what you mean and mean what you say. Keep your messages simple and clear and uncluttered. Great communicators do not waste words. Make a point in a meeting or in a presentation and illustrate it. Then move on. Don't waffle.

3 Change your formality and tone slightly, depending on who you are talking to. Although we should treat everyone equally, we should be a bit more formal when addressing senior staff and a bit more informal when addressing peers. You probably do this anyway, without noticing it. However, you can make it more deliberate and it can help you establish the correct hierarchy (if there is one) in your work environment. It is important to get these tones and nuances right, and appropriate forms of address do not go unnoticed. Generally avoid jargon unless all the people you are talking to understand it.

4 In meetings, to gain power, stand up to make a presentation. Have the excuse of a Power Point or chart that you need to explain. If you talk while standing it gives you more presence and power in the room. Likewise,in meetings, look at the whole group. Many people only look at the chairperson. Look at each of the members.  They will appreciate it. Use READY. Aim. FIRE to deliver notes so you are looking at the others when talking.

5 Volunteer to make a formal presentation on behalf of the company. That will get you really noticed as most people do not like to present. Practise as if you are in front of the real audience. Anticipate the questions you will be asked and practise the answers, looking at the whole room.

If you are not quite confident enough, attend one of my mini courses. The next one starts Monday 3rd March, 7pm and is just three sessions and you will improve heaps.

Why not ask me a specific question about how to move ahead in your career regarding communication!

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