Develop Your Communication Skills (Part 3)

Many times, it happens that we have to put up our views publicly, in a gathering of more than two, tens or hundreds of people, in a seminar, in a public meeting sometime all of sudden or sometime under a scheduled program. Some speakers get nervous as soon as they are summoned to put up their views through a podium. Some do it very smoothly. It depends upon the individual psychology.

We must care for our words.

For better public speaking, we need to keep care of the purpose of the meeting. We must care that our message is clear and concise for which we should make preparations in advance if that is a pre scheduled meeting. If it is extempore speech, we must care for the mood of the gathering and continue to restyle our deliveries but targeted to the conclusion we wish to bring about. We must pay due attention towards our action so that the people may find us fully stunning.

We must care for the conclusions we wish to bring about.

When we are going to attend some meeting, we must remember the purpose of our attending the meeting. After the meeting is over, what should be the conclusion? When we are in meeting, we must be mentally ready for any sudden development like the organizer may ask us to deliver ‘two words’ without any prior information. To make good impressions on the audience, we should make some working on the subject of the meeting before hand. For that purpose, we must understand what we want to say, whom we want to tell and why they might want to hear it.

We should know to whom we are going to speak. What are their interests, presuppositions and values? What do they share in common with others; how are they unique?

What do we wish to communicate? One way of answering this question is to ask ourselves about the ‘success criteria’. How do we know if and when we have successfully communicated what we have in mind?

How can we best convey our message? Language is important here. We may choose our words and continue to make face reading of our audience. In advance, we must have a plan how we would make a beginning, middle and end. If time and place allow, we may consider and prepare audio-visual aids.

When? Timing is important here. Develop a sense of timing, so that your contributions are seen and heard as relevant to the issue or matter at hand. There is a time to speak and a time to be silent. ‘It’s better to be silent than sing a bad tune.’

Where? What is the physical context of the communication in mind? You may have time to visit the room, for example, and rearrange the furniture. Check for availability and visibility if you are using audio or visual aids.

Why? In order to convert hearers into listeners, you need to know why they should listen to you – and tell them if necessary. What disposes them to listen? That implies that you know yourself why you are seeking to communicate – the value or worth or interest of what you are going to say.

When it comes to wording your message, less is more. You’re giving your audience headlines. They don’t need to and are usually not expecting to become experts on the subject as a result of hearing your talk.

If you’re using slides, limit the content of each one to a few bullet points, or one statement or a very simple diagram.

We must be ready for all eventualities.

Preparation in advance is one of the most important factors in determining our communication successes. When possible, we must set meeting times and speaking and presentation times well in advance, thus allowing ourselves the time we need to prepare our communications, mindful of the entire communication process. By paying close attention to each of these stages and preparing accordingly, we can ensure our communications will be more effective and better understood.

Of course, not all communications can be scheduled. In this case, preparation may mean having a good, thorough understanding of the office goings-on, enabling us to communicate with the knowledge we need to be effective, both through verbal and written communications.

We must try to make our delivery unforgettable.

Our delivery of the speech must be unforgettable, no matter how we prepared and crafted our clear, concise message. For that purpose, we must dress up perfectly. For delivering our message clearly, we can use some examples to bring our points lively, we may keep our body language up-beat without staying stuck behind a rostrum, we can have slow delivery – some pauses can give us indications of the audience if they are taking interest in you or not. For a variety, we can use a variety of tones of voice and visual aids. And, we must keep our self confidence alive throughout our speech as we can face some unruly mob actions too.

Be Careful, Be Happy – Develop Your Communication Skills.