Sunday, December 11, 2016

Influence: The Power of Eloquence

How eloquent are you in your speech ? In your presentations ? Interviews ? Client and customer meetings ?

What is your conversion rate ? Not that kind of conversions that we work with in tech-although that matters also- but conveying your message across. Do you capture your audience attention ? It doesn't matter if they agree or disagree with your message if they are engaged.

Speaking skills are essential and unfortunately, poorly developed on Wall Street. I think a lot of people working in finance should take an acting class. Become a world class act. Like Lady Gaga (Lady Maga ?) here. Be the center of attention. It helps if you trained with Mark Burnett.

Image: Gagadaily

To become an eloquent communicator, one should:

  1. Be an very good listener and reader. I have a vocabulary of 100,000 words which is above average, certainly in finance
  2. Utilize metaphors, eulogies.
  3. There are so many things at work: register, cadence, timber and so forth.
  4. Speaking slowly and deep generally works best.
  5. Pause before articulating the message.
  6. When words come alive, that's eloquence.
  7. Use the words that match your audience's vocabulary. Use of powerful verbs convert action. Believe me ! [Lady Gaga]
  8. Speak with authority. You have been asked there to speak, not your audience.
  9. Any speech should finish with a call to action.
  10. Up your persuasion skills.

Mark Bowden talks about the unconscious (brain-stem) choice audiences make on the body language of presenters:

  1. Friend or foe ? First unconscious judgement. Also there's a 3rd category: indifferent, which is the default setting
  2. Is he like me ? My tribe ?...That the second unconscious judgement.
  3. A smile, the 'universal signal', must build for about 3 seconds, and it must sustain for 3 seconds.
  4. Maintains eye contact with your audience.
  5. Gestures at the belly level are interpreted as goodwill and honesty. At the chest level, excitement.
  6. Hand gestures down and finger pointing are a telltale of berated unfriendly delivery, aka "signaling predators".

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