With Andrea Clarke, founder of online mentor program CareerCEO.
Ever wondered what it’s like to be in the same room with Oprah, the Dalai Lama and Bill Clinton? Well, it’s like being caught in the gravitational force of a small planet. All three are compelling communicators with one thing in common – through years of practice, they have mastered their voice, body language and use of language. We can do the same. We can command a room or even a staff meeting by simply being in control of the signals we’re sending.
Inflection patterns that rise at the end of statements make the speaker appear less confident of what they are saying – as if they are seeking validation or confirmation from the audience. Never underestimate the power of pacing yourself – embracing a few seconds of silence means you are comfortable and in control. Speaking softly, or letting the ends of your sentences trail off, will be less effective and make you sound tentative.
2. Powerful language
Have you ever caught yourself using language that plays down your capacity in meetings, such as, “This isn’t my area of expertise, but…”? This is [a] language pattern that we unconsciously use which undermines our true ability. Don’t disqualify yourself from an opportunity by using self-diminishing qualifiers, and try not to say, “sorry” for no reason.
3. Body language
Does your body language reflect confidence? Do you tilt your head slightly to the side when speaking to your boss? Do you twine one leg around the other when facing the CEO? Are you aware of any slightly distracting habits you have when you’re under pressure? Body language is also language, which is why we need to be acutely aware of the subtle signals we are sending.
By Rebecca Hanley, Amy Molloy, Melanie Dimmitt.