Experts in psychology argue that quality and purity of speech have a great influence on the perception of information by the listener, so it is not enough to have sufficient knowledge. It is also necessary to know how to represent your knowledge in a verbal way to your audience.
What are the most common problems?
People often speak in such a boring and lethargic way that audience's attention instantly switches to something else - for example, to the phone lying on your lap, or to a beautiful tree outside the window, and maybe to the correspondence in a social network or just to whispering with a colleague who sits in a nearby chair.
The big problem is a flat, monotonous speech throughout the entire performance. Our ear perceives such speech as white noise - a neutral noise background that does not bother anyone, but also produces nothing. It is very difficult to listen to such a noise, especially if the presentation is long.
The next problem is a speech overflowing with slang and parasitic words and other verbal garbage. It is not easy to catch a grain of important information in such a presentation. A variety of extra sounds - mooing, prolonged utterance of vowels etc. makes the speech less professional, even if a speaker is an absolute expert in his field.
People speak too fast or too slowly - in the first case, no one understands anything, in the second one everyone just fall asleep. And this is only a part of the difficulties. Let's learn how to improve your speech!
Normalize your rhythm
When you speak too fast, it prevents the audience from perceiving your speech, and also tells people how nervous and anxious you are. There is absolutely no need to show this - external confidence with any internal condition is a part of a person's professionalism and respect to an audience. Therefore, speak clearly, in the rhythm of breathing. To do this, you, at least, need to breathe. Many speakers hold their breath or, on the contrary, puff, because of what their speech becomes worse and worse. Breathe freely, practice talking in a free, natural rhythm with your breathing - rehearse at home and you can do it in front of the audience. If your breathing is not rhythmic - you speak too fast!
Avoid sitting down
If you've ever taken singing lessons, then you remember that lessons are mostly performing in a standing position. The thing is that when we stand, all the organs and systems participating in the formation of the voice are in a natural conditions - to say it simple, they are straightened out. The lungs, the diaphragm, the abdominal muscles, the neck and its organs, the face - all plays its role in the way your voice will sound. Therefore, many experts recommend even to stand when you are talking on the phone, and not sitting down, if you need to convince the interlocutor or sell something to him. The same applies to the presentation. Do not curl up in an armchair, and do not even sit down if you are doing well with your health. Stand up, walk, breathe - and you will speak much more effectively.
Remember that you're alive
You are not a robot - your voice should not be mechanical. A living person always experiences emotions. Add energy to your words. Vary the intonation: this does not mean that you have to move from whisper to piercing scream, but if you smile and at the moment the joke sounds - add emotion to the voice. Do it the way that even those who do not look at you can understand the moment. The exercise with the record works very well. Record yourself on the dictaphone and listen to it several times - you will perfectly understand what is wrong.
Pause and pause again
First, it will help you to catch your breath, and your listeners will have a chance to focus on your previous thought and make an accent on it. Second, it will give you an opportunity to recall any necessary episode of speech or to think about an answer to a question asked. In addition, pauses perfectly help to assimilate information - when speech sounds in one continuous stream, a person disconnects from it, as well as from the above-described white noise, and fails to perceive any spoken words. Pauses put emphasis - it helps not only to listen, but also to hear.
Get rid of verbal trash
It does not come at once. Of course, every speaker should control all what he says, but this does not always happen by itself. You will need some reinforced training - again, recording and listening helps! You will understand exactly where you are pulling unnecessary sounds, yawning, where you start with "hmmmmm ...." or use word parasites like "of course", "yeah", "well ..." and so on. The more you practice, the better results you can achieve.
Smile, smile, smile
Do not be 'that grumpy man'. Do this exercise. Pronounce a phrase with a normal facial expression (yes, facial – your face acts!) and record yourself on the dictaphone. Listen. Repeat the same phrase, but smile when you pronounce it. Listen again. You are guaranteed to hear the difference! Even on the phone, when a person smiles, it can be HEARD. A smile changes your intonation and the whole impression, in addition - and this is proven! – it changes mood. Smile -you’re your audience will to you back.
© PodioBox 2017