Lessons Learned From Exceptional Business Communicators

April 06, 2017    |    Brad Holst

What do wildly successful business people have in common?Multiple studies confirm they tend to be exceptional communicators—people who excel at moving information and insight into action.


What can you learn from these communication superheroes?
In all my years’ experience working in the business communication field, I’ve observed that two behaviors set exceptional communicators apart:

  1. How they THINK through what they want to say.
  2. How they SPEAK to their target audiences.


Communication superheroes take a smart, disciplined approach to THINK.
“Think before you speak" my grandmother often told me, usually after I’d stuck my foot in my mouth. It’s still good advice. 

Exceptional business communicators do just that. And in their thinking, they are:

  • Deeply curious: they dig down to bedrock to uncover what’s going on for their audience, to profoundly understand the issues their audience cares about most.
  • Sharply focused: they put their audience’s problems into sharp focus and then define easy-to-understand paths to resolution.
  • Thoroughly prepared: they plan their narrative. They develop a concise and convincing story that their audience can viscerally relate to and learn from. They also anticipate and prepare for audience reactions.


Communication superheroes get “in the zone” to SPEAK.
Being “in the zone” is often used to describe elite athletes performing at their peak. It implies increased focus and attention under pressure, both mentally and physically.

Likewise, exceptional business communicators master the delivery skills needed to achieve peak performance. They invest the time and energy needed to “own” a particular story (and get in the zone) through intense practice.

This empowers them to be:

  • Fully present: having built the muscle memory needed to master their delivery, they’re free to focus their attention on the audience, and are able to handle surprises and challenges with grace. 
  • Confidently interactive: they build rapport and trust with their audience by asking thought-provoking questions and handling tough questions without getting defensive.
  • Credibly engaging: even in challenging, high-stakes conversations and presentations—whether face-to-face or virtual—they deliver with an authentic conviction that makes them believable, memorable, and motivating.


How will this make me more successful?
Because exceptional business communicators know how to THINK and SPEAK effectively, they achieve desired RESULTS consistently in three areas:

  • Presenting ideas and information.
  • Influencing others to take action.
  • Collaborating effectively.

People who do these three things exceptionally well are invaluable to their organizations. They’re recognized, rewarded, and highly sought after.


How will this make my business more successful?
Ultimately, your organization benefits from the ability of exceptional communicators to:

  • Help individuals and teams make better decisions—and faster than the norm.
  • Keep others engaged and focused on the things that promote progress, not impede it.
  • Empower everyone involved to execute with excellence.
I've learned a lot from working alongside, observing, training, and coaching communication superheroes. I don’t know about you, but I think they're lessons worth learning.



Become a communication superhero OR build an entire team of exceptional business communicators with Mandel's world-class presentation and public speaking skills workshop: Think and Speak for Results®.