Your homework today:
Step 1 – Observe a couple of peers that are great communicators.
Step 2 – Similarly pick out a couple of people in your world that miss the mark as communicators. When they start talking you get itchy and reach for your device, you take off your glasses, you stop listening, you turn off your video on your zoom call.
Step 3 – Once you’ve identified these good and not so good communicators, ask yourself, “Why?”. What are they doing to gain traction or to lose your interest?
Some answers from my clients (no names revealed!) –
Good communicators: Conversational, humorous, audience focused, sounds spontaneous, listens well, commanding, builds relationships, stays focused on the message, passionate, direct, believes in product, believes in self, shows confidence, good posture, looks sharp, respectful, inclusive, engaging, thankful.
This compilation shows the following – an effective communicator excels at:
- Content – Sharing your knowledge, showing your gravitas and creating credibility.
- Context – Setting the stage and knowing it’s about audience engagement & shared comprehension.
- Self-awareness – Having an innate belief in yourself and your topic.
- Other-awareness – Creating an environment that increases relationship capital… which will increase financial capital.
Next week’s blog will focus on the flip side – the characteristics of struggling communicators and how to turn that around.
Back to your homework. Do it and send to us! This exercise forces you to observe with purpose. By doing so YOU will become an even more effective communicator.
© 2021 Karen Cortell Reisman & Speak For Yourself®, All rights reserved
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Karen Cortell Reisman, M.S., author of 2 books and President of Speak For Yourself®, works with decision makers on how to speak with gravitas. It’s all in how you speak for yourself. Karen also speaks about her cousin, #AlbertEinstein, in a message about hope, resilience and brassieres.
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My Grandmother (May she rest in peace) was a great communicator.
She believed LOUD was the way to go and it worked for her.
Good for your grandmother! That’s one way to get heard. Thanks for your comment Michael.
David Brooks of the NYTimes is a good communicator on the PBS NewsHour because he comes across as very smart, but not condescending. He is always serious, but not preachy, when the topic is serious.
His only problem is that he rocks back and forth in front of the camera while talking, which is very distracting. If he could watch himself even one time, he would probably stop doing it. (He did not do this before Covid when he was sitting at the PBS studio table with Judy Woodruff and Mark Shields.)
Pat – you are astute with your comment. I’ve seen very experienced newscasters do this rocking motion at their virtual “zoom” seated presentations. Trevor Noah does this sometimes too. PBS needs to tell David.