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Use the Power of Nonverbal Communication to Connect With Your Audience: 7 Tips

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"What you do speaks so loudly that I cannot hear what you say." —Ralph Waldo Emerson

If you’re preparing to make a presentation or give a talk, it’s likely you do what most people do: focus solely on your content. While what you have to say is definitely key, how you say it—through nonverbal “language”—is a lot more important than you might think.

As a matter of fact, there’s a lot of research out there that says anywhere from 50 to 90% of the impact you have on people is a result of nonverbal communication. Your posture, gestures, facial expressions, and the tone and cadence of your voice, play a huge role not only in getting your message across to an audience, but also, in engaging them, building trust, and increasing your credibility.

So, what can you do to bring your nonverbal delivery to the next level? 

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How to Speak Confidently in Meetings

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We’ve all been there: Sitting in a meeting and feeling hesitant or afraid to bring up an idea, ask a question, or (yikes!) disagree with a participant’s viewpoint. Or, as in my case, holding off on speaking up because my temperament is to listen and give myself time to process information before joining in (and that sometimes takes longer than the meeting allows!).

The next time the voice in your head says, “They’ll think my idea is stupid,” or “If I ask that question, someone might get upset,” think again. Your voice matters, and the world is not going to end if someone doesn’t like your idea or if another doesn’t like being disagreed with.

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Silicon Valley Business Journal Honors PowerSpeaking, Inc. on Fastest-Growing List

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If there’s one thing the past two pandemic years have taught us, it’s to be grateful for what we have.  Never to take our lives, our relationships, our life’s work, or our good fortune for granted.

Speaking of good fortune (and yes, a lot of creative, committed, heartfelt work), I’m beyond thrilled to share our latest news: PowerSpeaking, Inc. made the Silicon Valley Business Journal’s 2021 “100 Fastest-Growing Private Companies” list, ranking at number 38! The recognition was given to private companies that met or exceeded a certain earnings level for the years 2018 through 2020.

We couldn’t be more proud—and grateful. 

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How to Ease Your Fear of Public Speaking

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“According to most studies, people's number one fear is public speaking. Number two is death. Death is number two. Does that sound right? This means to the average person, if you go to a funeral, you're better off in the casket than doing the eulogy.” Jerry Seinfeld

 

We hear you, Jerry. While most of the people we've trained in public speaking over the years wouldn't opt for death over the stage, "stagefright" is common. We often see the signs: trembling, shaky voice, nervous pacing, and sometimes, freezing into a stony silence from fear.

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Engage Your Audience Through Powerful Storytelling Techniques

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One of my favourite tales from the work world illustrates what great storytelling does best: engage people and inspire them to meaningful action.  

In 2015, outdoor clothing and equipment giant REI wanted to do something different with their advertising in the weeks leading up to Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving, which officially starts the holiday shopping madness in the U.S.

After entertaining a number of quirky ideas for ad campaigns—like perching Santa Claus on a mountaintop—they decided instead to do something positively disruptive that reflected their deepest values as a company.

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A Strength-Based Approach is the Key to Unlocking Your Potential

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Research has shown us that the best managers—and by extension, the best-performing teams and individuals—focus on strengths rather than weaknesses.  

Building on strengths-based psychology and social work, the Gallup® research organization surveyed millions of people worldwide between 2007 and 2017 regarding employee engagement. Sadly, they found that only one-third of employees responded “strongly agree” with this statement:

“At work, I have the opportunity to do what I do best every day.”

As a matter of fact, they pointed out that, “In stark contrast, our studies indicate that people who do have the opportunity to focus on their strengths every day are six times as likely to be engaged in their jobs and more than three times as likely to report having an excellent quality of life in general.

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Virtual Conference Speaking: Engaging Your Virtual Audience

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“Great speakers are not born, they are trained.” 

This Dale Carnegie quote is never more true than when you’re speaking at a conference—especially if it’s virtual.

With so many distractions, competing events, and potential technology glitches, virtual conferences are a place where you have to work extra hard to prepare for and wow your audience.

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Women, Find Your Power Through Confident Communication [10 Top Tips]

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When asked what advice she would give professional women, former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright replied, “Learn to interrupt.” Sound rude? Think again. Albright learned the hard way that you won’t get anywhere if you don’t speak up. Unfortunately, a lot of women in the workplace still make the mistake of not joining the conversation, and not making their voices heard.

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How to Present to Senior Executives [23 Proven Strategies]

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If you’re preparing to make a pitch to senior executives, you can throw most of what you’ve learned about making presentations in the trash.

Why? Because this is an entirely different audience.

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3 Top Tips to Engage Your Virtual Audience

Have you been getting too many blank stares, awkward silences, and people multitasking during your virtual presentations or meetings?

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