We all, at some point of our life, want to get our thoughts communicated to a greater number of people. We want to pursue people with our thoughts and ideas. We even try. But, most of us fail in those attempts. Those who win become our idols. We die to get that winning quality, to copy that amazing speaking skill which can literally transfix the audiences and make them our devoted followers. So we try, we practice and, there again, failure embraces us. So what can we do that will make us more persuasive in our speech? That will help us become a better speaker? Believe me, the path towards becoming a great speaker is no rocket science. In fact, it’s like an applied science of logic and common sense.
Let’s learn about the 17 simple rules of winning the heart of audiences.
Now, before we start with the 17 ways, let’s understand the three basic rules of logical speaking. Always remember that the 17 principles are actually based on these three primary rules –
- A) It should be understandable
- B) It should be logical
- C) It should be concrete and to the point
- Simple language: The simpler your language is, the more you will be understood. And avoid jargons at any cost. Just be simple, yet vivid and interesting, but not boring.
- Be direct: Be EXPLICIT with your message to lessen the chance of being misinterpreted. Let’s keep the Code words or mind games for your romantic partner.
- Follow an order in your speech: When describing a sequence or a process, go step by step in order. If you miss one, you will end up confusing your audience. Try diagrams, if required.
- Let the diagrams speak: Yes, for longer processes and sequences, you HAVE to take help of diagrams. Again, make them simple, clear, concise yet effective.
A) How to make your speech understandable
Use diagrams and charts
- Let the charts show: Just like diagrams, charts do magic when it’s about showing figures or numbers or volume. For both charts and diagrams, avoid complex pattern.
- Try Progressive Disclosure: Now, what’s a ‘Progressive Disclosure?’ Wiki says, “Progressive disclosure is an interaction design technique often used in human computer interaction to help maintain the focus of a user’s attention by reducing clutter, confusion, and cognitive workload.” So when you are showing a complex diagram, pause in every step, explain what you are showing and move to the next slide or step.
- Use metaphors, analogies etc.: Analogies, comparisons, metaphors etc are great if you are introducing new concepts.
- Use commonplaces: Use commonplaces whenever you feel the topic is going to be argumentative. Start your speech with that, then slowly moving towards your thoughts and ideas.
- Ask questions: Nothing is like giving your audience the scope to think and raise questions. Not only that shows how engaged your audience is with your speech, but also establishes a two-way communication.
B) How to make it logical
Let them ask.
- Encourage opposing your ideas: Because only fools hate to be opposed. Let them oppose your ideas. That gives you the golden opportunity to refute their ideas and establish your points.
- Stress on points which matter more to the audience: Of course your audience is giving you their precious time to learn about something that interests them or is somehow valuable to them. So make them believe that their investment has not gone in vain.
- Use real objects or photographs: People love to see tangible, real visuals which support the statement. Abstract means nothing in such communications.
- Detailing builds up trust: In the absence of such photographs, sound as much vivid as you can.
- Facts and figures do wonder: Imagine the difference between “every year, many people die of cardiac issues” and “every year, 1 million people die of cardiac issues worldwide.”
- No citation means zero value: If you are making a claim, support your statement by citing the actual resources. Otherwise, it will sound vague.
- Real life events value a lot: Theories are best explained by real life situations or events.
- Personal stories rock: Lastly, if you can share personal experiences and anecdotes, your audience will not have a choice but to believe in you completely.
C) How to make it sound concrete and to the point
Of course, there are other ways too to be a more persuasive speaker. Do you know any? Can you think of any? Yes? GREAT! Do share your views with us in the comment box and let all of us grow together.