Right about now, I find myself thinking about the New Year — my plans and goals for it. Perhaps you find yourself doing the same.
Have you ever made communication resolutions?
I always like to reflect on what I’ve done well and what I could improve upon next year when it comes to communicating with my colleagues, employees, and clients. You’d be surprised at how much you can strengthen your relationships with the people around you, when you’re able to be a bit more mindful of communication missteps.
Even small changes in how you communicate can have a big impact on how others perceive you. And, setting communication resolutions isn’t just good for individuals — organizations can also take stock of what’s gone well this past year and where they could improve in 2015.
As you think about your own communication resolutions, I thought I’d share the two communication missteps I saw professionals make most often this year — and offer tips on how to avoid them.
Be more concise.
I’m willing to bet that you sat through at least one presentation or meeting this year during which you couldn’t help but look at your watch, check your email, doodle on a notepad, or just stare blankly at the presenter in an effort to seem interested.
Unfortunately, it’s easy to let your presentation grow too long. Whether, out of passion for the topic or because they possess a level of technical knowledge their audience doesn’t, people often delve into detail that’s unnecessary or unwanted.
Here’s how to avoid the trap of too much detail:
- Better plan out your presentation, by distinguishing between must-know information and nice-to-know information.
- Use fewer slides. Use Mandel’s 5+1 Slide Strategy.™
- Improve your slides by putting data into the appendix of the slide deck or handout. Or, make use of the “hide slide” feature in PowerPoint.
It’s always tempting to put a lot of data into your presentations, but rarely will a non-technical audience appreciate it.
Be more dynamic.
Admit it - this past year, you also sat through one or two presentations where you thought you might actually fall asleep. And, it wasn’t because you weren’t interested in the content.
A boring delivery will make even the most interesting content difficult to digest. Slight adjustments in body language and vocal energy can dramatically improve your delivery and keep your audience engaged and focused.
- Don’t be afraid to move around when you present.
- Let your gestures flow naturally.
- Amp up your vocal energy. It may feel unnatural, but your audience will appreciate it — especially if they’re listening in by phone or computer.
Finally, I’m a firm believer that there’s always room for improvement.
I may be a communications coach and trainer, but I’m also human. I still make mistakes and I’m always striving to improve my delivery. So, even if you’re already a great presenter, hopefully by being mindful of the above tips, you can become an even better one.
Or, perhaps this blog will serve to stimulate your own thinking about how you and your organization can improve your communications moving forward.
As always, thank you for being a loyal blog reader. On behalf of the entire Mandel organization worldwide, I wish you a very peaceful and prosperous New Year!
Conducting a hybrid meeting, one where some of those attending are in the room and others are virtual, is a lot harder than many think—and it’s quickly becoming the new norm.
Focusing on a few key aspects of your delivery can help you take advantage of this new meeting mode.
With remote jobs increasing in 71% in 2020, many leaders continue to manage remote workers as if they were managing a co-located team.
Yet, fifty three percent of leaders we surveyed at a recent webinar said that they had NOT received any training on leading a virtual team.
Under normal circumstances, staying present and being able to fully commit to listening is difficult. However, in this new reality of digital interaction and mental fatigue, listening has a new set of challenges.There’s good news. We can make listening easier in our virtual meetings, improving the experience of our participants! Here are a few tips.
What does the hit on Netflix called The Queen’s Gambit tell us about how to sell in a virtual setting? Actually, something very important.
Before we break down how this show teaches us the key to virtual selling let’s look at the backstory.
With the beginning of the New Year, it’s the perfect time to address the virtual communication mistakes that have become common with so many of us working virtually this past year.
Here are 3 of the most common mistakes when communicating virtually, and what you can do to overcome them.
Gratitude. Appreciation. Recognition. It makes you feel good. This week in the US, many will pause for a day or two to give thanks and show appreciation for the things and people we care about most. It’s no secret how appreciation benefits the person getting it—but did you know it benefits the person giving it just as much?
Discover why recognition is such a powerful tool for improving relationships and wellbeing in life—and at work. Learn how to (and how NOT to) express your appreciation to others.
People in communities across the globe are adjusting to communicating while wearing masks. As we’re all experiencing, masks present both verbal and non-verbal communication challenges.Given this, we’ve prepared 5 tips for effective communications while wearing a mask, and compiled several insightful articles from leading publications on additional best practices.
In every virtual training workshop that Mandel delivers, we dedicate a Virtual Meeting Producer (or moderator or facilitator) to act as the Trainer’s co-pilot.
A Virtual Producer manages the meeting platform functions and mitigates any technical challenges, allowing the Trainer to focus exclusively on the learning and development of the workshop participants.
As someone who wears a virtual producer hat, here are 5 best practices to help you create engaging virtual meetings.
As part of our research into listening intelligence, we’ve detected four distinct styles (or preferences) of how people listen. These four listening styles cover what individuals pay attention to as well as what they are likely to miss in any collaboration.
Learn more about the 4 Listening Habits, and how listening impacts both the well-being and productivity of your virtual teams.
- How to deliver impactful, engaging hybrid meetings
- Leading a Virtual Team Means Doing Things Differently
- Are You Really Listening?
- 4 Listening Tips for Improving Your Virtual Meetings
- The Irresistible Power of Stories in Virtual Selling
- The Top Sales Skill for 2021!
- Top Virtual Communication Mistakes – and How to Overcome Them in 2021!
- Tell a Story. Close a Deal. Even on Zoom.
- Throwback: Why Appreciation Matters in Life and at Work
- Tips for Communicating Effectively While Wearing a Mask