Leadership Skill Spotlight: High Impact Communications

The world’s best communicators all share the same basic behaviors. They grab you from the first sentence without performing and without thinking about their own egos. Everything is about the listener, from the content, to the order of presentation, to the style.

Tim Johnson, Managing Director/Partner at Slomoff Consulting Group Inc., led the October WILpower workshops, where he illustrated the techniques great communicators use to engage and move their audiences. During the High Impact Communications session, participants discovered how to deliver impactful, effective communications from one-on-one and to large group audiences.

Key Takeaways:

  • When addressing a large group - don't freak out! Think in terms of having a series of 1-on-1 conversations. Make eye contact with members of the audience for 1 to 2 sentences to make sure you're connecting with them and ensure your message is landing.

  • The sentence is your friend. Mastering the sentence is one of the most important things you can do. We more effectively consume information when thoughts are broken into complete sentences.

  • Practice, practice, practice! Practice out loud until it becomes natural - record yourself on your phone or pretend to be on a phone call while practicing your pitch.

  • Your Goal: create meaning and relevance. Limit distractions by leaving presentation decks behind after your speech. Listening to your address while reading your slides on the screen or in print can distract your audience. Leave behind a thought provoking idea along with your hard copy presentation.

  • We're wired for story. Use the power of story or metaphor to illustrate your point. Grab people with example first, then go into detail.

  • Your grandmother was right. Good posture matters. Keep a straight line from your forearm, wrist and fingers, level weight on both feet and sit at the front of your chair. This shows your audience you're confident and engaged.

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