Tips on how to communicate, make presentations like Managers

In communication and everything attached to it, there is no second chance to make first impression.

It is very easy to piss off your audience. Here is a tip, if you are talking and delegates are sleeping, you are boring!

Communication sounds simple, but it is deeper than it feels like.

No wonder companies pay hugely just to designate someone to communicate their ideas, products, services to their target audience.

Unfortunately, many executives talk without communicating. In all human endeavours, you cannot be a good leader without being able to communicate effectively.

Many people that are technically sound are not always good communicators. You can imagine the synergy when a manager with certain expertise can also communicate well.

I have discovered that some companies lose contracts because their representatives cannot explain how they intend to add value to their prospects as expected.

This also applies to lower cadre, as many job seekers don’t get appointments because they are poor communicators. It is not a rocket science, but an obvious anomaly.

Human resources experts are often thrill at good communicators such that, more than often they downplay technical side.

Many top leaders cannot get their thoughts out to their followers because they don’t have it in them.

So, you don’t know? Communication is a big deal, don’t underestimate it. There is no second chance to make first impression.

In my experience as communication consultant, I have seen managers that cannot make good speeches or communicate with subordinate effectively.

Jokingly, some executives often say speaking is not in their jobs descriptions. You cannot give what you don’t have.

However, you can find that thing that you don’t have. By learning, you can become an effective communicator, making speeches and presentations like CEO!

Sometimes you attend business events, and you would be amazed how some managers get lost in their thoughts.

Communication is an art that can be applied to areas of one’s specialisation but it doesn’t come cheap.

You must be willing to learn. That is the rule – learning to speak or making presentation like an executive.

To be a better speaker, you need to have confidence in yourself. This will help you not to give up when you make a mistake.

Speaking fluently is a skill that can be learned, just as you can build your confidence in it. That means you actually know what you want to say to your listeners.

From my experience, I have come up with certain tips to make beautiful presentations. Here are the guides.

THINK!

Sometimes the difficult thing about making speeches isn’t what you end up saying but the speaker’s thought process. Did you think about what you are about to say?

Wait a minute, if you don’t think about it, what would you say?

TALK TO YOURSELF

There is always notice time for making presentation. That means you can prepare for it.

When you’re at home (or alone somewhere else) you can practice your speech with your favourite person: yourself.

That means you have to listen to yourself before you talk to others. This works for newbies as well as those that have their skins in making presentations.

While at it, try speaking your thoughts out loud. Read out loud.

Practice is practice, and even if you don’t have anyone to correct your mistakes, just the act of speaking out loud will help you become more comfortable with what you want to say.

USE MIRROR

This could sound unscientific but it works. Whenever you can, take a few minutes out of your day to stand in front of a mirror and speak.

Choose your topic, set a timer for 2 or 3 minutes and just talk about it. The essence of this is to watch your mouth, face and body language as you speak.

It also makes you feel like you’re talking to someone, so you can pretend you’re having a discussion with your target audience.

FOCUS ON FLUENCY, NOT GRAMMAR.

When you speak, how often do you stop? The more you stop, the less confident you sound and the less comfortable you become.

Try the mirror exercise above, but challenge yourself to speak without stopping or stammering (taking pauses between your words) the entire time.

This might mean that your sentences won’t be grammatically perfect, and that’s okay! If you focus on speaking fluently instead of correctly, you’ll still be understood and you’ll sound better.

You can fill in the correct grammar and word rules as you learn them better.

TRY TONGUE TWISTERS

Someone may want to ask what tongue twisters is. Tongue twisters are series of words that are difficult to say quickly.

As an example: “The thirty-three thieves thought that they thrilled the throne throughout Thursday”.

Try saying this a few times is a great way to build yourself in speech making.

Word games like this will help you find the right placement for your mouth and tongue, and can even help your pronunciation.

LISTEN AND REPEAT

Do you watch TV shows or YouTube videos? Pick your topics of choice or something similar. Use them to improve your fluency.

Choose a short part of a presentation and repeat it line by line.

Try to match the tone, speed and even the accent (if you can). It doesn’t matter if you miss a few words, the important thing is to keep talking.

Try to sound just like the native speakers on the show.

PAY ATTENTION TO STRESSED SOUNDS

Listening to some presentations can be boring. Whenever you see people sleeping during a presentation, the usual case is the speaker is a poor communicator.

Many managers don’t pay attention to stressed sounds. English language uses stresses in words and sentences.

That means you’ll need to stress, or emphasize, certain words and syllables (sounds) to give words and sentences different meanings.

Listen to where native speakers place the emphasis when they speak. Try to repeat it the same way.

This won’t only help you speak well, it might even reduce misunderstandings. It often does.

Sometimes, placing the stress on the wrong syllable completely changes the word. The word “ADdress”, for instance, isn’t the same as the word “adDRESS”.

“ADdress” refers to a physical location where someone lives, and “adDRESS” means to formally speak to a group of people.

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LEARN WORD FORMS WITH NEW WORDS.

Some practices come before you even open your mouth. Make speaking easier by learning the different forms of any words you learn.

You should do this when you’re learning new vocabulary. For example, if you just learned the word write, you should also learn some other forms like wrote and written.

Knowing the correct way to use a word in any kind of sentence is important.

This knowledge will help you while speaking. You won’t have to stop and think of different words—you’ll know exactly when you need to use that word while speaking.

LEARN MOST COMMON SAYINGS

Take some time to really notice how you speak in your native language. What words and phrases do you use the most often?

Learn how to say your most commonly used phrases and words in English. Knowing them in English will help you speak as well in English as you do in your native language.

PREPARE FOR SPECIFIC SITUATION

Are you learning making speeches or presentation for a specific reason? For example, are you learning so you can get a job in a company?

In that case, practice speeches that will help you in an interview. Are you learning making presentation for contracts and negotiations?

Then, you have to understand the industry’s specific terms and not naked words.

If you’re preparing to go to a restaurant, what might conversations in a restaurant sound like? Answer the questions a waiter might ask you. Try talking about food and menus.

You’ll feel more confident if you’re prepared!

RELAX

You can be your best helper or your worst enemy when learning to speak or making presentations like professionals.

Obviously, it’s not an easy adventure but you have to persist. If you have prepared, you don’t need to worry about how you sound when you speak. Just relax!

If you get stuck or confused: become smart – ask audience a question, then gather your thought. Speak moderately if you have to.

Tell them something to make them want to hear more. It is call being smart at the hot seat!

TELL A STORY

This is an age long thing, quite a number of professional speakers do this. Choose a story that you know really well and tell it.

Remember to think as you’re telling your story. Focus on speaking fluently instead of correctly. Say every sentence out loud to yourself.

Even if you have nobody to talk to, you can still build confidence and master fluency on your own time.

Tips on how to communicate, make presentations like Managers by Adeola Onasanya, CEO Ideal Communication. She is the author of two books: Confidence Booster and I choose to Rise

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