In today’s global marketplace, leaders must possess strong communication skills. The sound of someone’s voice matters twice as much as the content of his or her message, according to recent findings as reported in the Wall Street Journal. Studies have shown that a person’s speech patterns, including the quality of their voice, strongly influences how others perceive him or her.
Last year, research published at Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business revealed that the resonance of a male executives voice strongly correlated to their earning power. A smaller study of female business leaders suggested that this pattern did not hold true for women. The leading criteria for female leaders were the use of ‘vocal energy’ or variations in their volume. What many don’t realize is that you can change the way you sound. For those who speak too quickly or in a soft voice, the message can be lost.
Open and clear communication is a critical part of strong leadership. In today’s global marketplace, a successful professional must be able to deliver their message in a clear and concise manner and to use their speaking skills to lead and inspire others. The proper tone and the proper delivery will make the difference in an audience that listens to what is being said or chooses to remain fixed on the messages on their Smartphone. Public speaking and presentations are no longer just confined to the conference room and the PowerPoint slides.
The truth is, as Patricia Fripp recently stated, “public speaking is everything we do when we leave our home in the morning.” With that in mind, there are several steps one can take to improve their professional speaking skills and deliver every message like a leader. By practicing these techniques you will be able to transform your communication skills into those of a dynamic and engaging speaker. You will consistently be able to establish credibility as soon as you begin to speak, and you will be able to persuade your audience with powerful authority and clarity.
Here are three steps one can take to improve their professional speaking skills and deliver every message like a leader.
- Power up Your Voice: Speaking in a strong voice conveys confidence and leadership. Learning to project from the diaphragm will create a strong, confident and dynamic voice. Take a breath and feel the control.
- Master the Strategic Pause: Simply slowing down your rate of speech will add impact to your message and will significantly improve your speech quality and delivery. Speak in sound bites. It shows you are in control of what you are saying, and it gives the listener time to process what is being said.
- Communicate with Eloquence: Avoid using filler words such as “uh,” “um,” “like,” and “you know.” Even seasoned professionals often use these words more often than then realize. Make an effort to avoid any words, syllables and phrases that detract from your message and make you look unprofessional.
By practicing these techniques you will be able to transform your communication skills into those of a dynamic and engaging speaker, and you will be able to persuade your audience with powerful authority.
Lee Iacooca stated, “You can have brilliant ideas, but if you can’t get them across, your ideas won’t get you anywhere.” Mastering the communication skills of a leader is more important than ever.
There are more tips to follow in the next edition of this article from Jayne Latz, Founder and President of Corporate Speech Solutions.
In the meantime visit, www.corporatespeechsolutions.com, to learn more.
About the Author
Jayne Latz is an expert in communication and CEO of Corporate Speech Solutions, LLC. She has worked as a speech trainer, coach, professional speaker, and has co-authored two books titled, Talking Business: A Guide to Professional Communication and Talking Business: When English is Your Second Language. She was recently featured in The Wall Street Journal and on The TODAY Show.
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