By: Corey Loehr
Hybrid meetings across multiple generations could spell confusion regarding your ability to communicate and articulate a vision. But it doesn’t have to be so. Here’s how to present with clarity and confidence.
It doesn’t matter whether you communicate with team members in person or online; what you deliver and how you deliver it won’t change. The key is being confident in your ability to deliver your message and having a clear message. Without clarity, no one is going to connect with what you have to say.
Diana Beyer provides six tips to exude clarity and confidence when you speak. Consider these three to prepare for presenting to your team.
Big words don’t make you look smart
When speaking, we think it’s better to sound like we know what we are talking about and often believe that using big words helps us seem more important. Unfortunately, using big words creates the opposite effect. Team members hearing you using big words may have them mistrust what you say. Rather than having you sound knowledgeable, it is construed as a way to cover up what you don’t know.
You have a vision for your Center; talk about it in plain language, language that your team will understand. Then, make it tangible for them in terms of how it connects with what they do on a day-to-day basis. By doing that, you will find your team will connect more with what you want them to do to deliver the vision.
Presenting Your Vision Means Speaking slowly
There is nothing like built-up excitement about your vision. You’re excited and want to tell the team about it to share your excitement. But speaking fast due to your excitement doesn’t help get your message across.
Beyer says, “Note that when slow down, you might feel like you’re speaking too slowly. That is rarely true. After all, your audience isn’t just listening to what you’re saying, their minds are also shooting off this way and that way as they consider the implications of your words, that strange email they got last night, and wonder what’s for lunch.”
Putting small pauses in your speech also helps. Doing that allows time for team members to take in what you are saying. Also, consider checking in with the team and asking them to playback to you what they heard you say. It is one way of checking if they are listening.
Beyer says that “the more you write, the better you get at putting your thoughts together.” So try writing down your thoughts or the flow of what you want to say to your team in a document, or better yet, on paper. The act of writing things down helps solidify in your mind what you want to say. By doing this, you may also find it helps to become clearer around your message.
Be your team. Put yourself in your group’s shoes as you read back what you have written. Would you understand everything you have on paper?
If you’re not a naturally strong writer, consider using tools like Grammarly or Hemingway App to aide yourself in grading your prose. Advanced writing tools like the ones mentioned go far beyond spell check and grammar. Grammarly, for instance, allows you to set goals for the tone, structure and the overall impression your written word will leave.
Provide one key takeaway
While presenting your vision and the message within is an overarching statement, the point of communicating it with a team is to have them buy into the idea of it. For that reason, if you were to drill down your vision into one key takeaway, what would that key point be? Even though you want to know that anyone listening to you is taking in everything you say, the fact is, they won’t be.
Research shows that people remember 10% of what they hear, 10% of what they read, and 80% of what they see. Therefore, if you want your team members to remember anything from your conversation with them, how would you get them to retain the essential aspect of your vision for the coming year?
Consider creating a visual that captures the critical points of your vision. This graphic may make the emotional connection with team members that you want. In addition, this is the best way to assist them in remembering what you have said.
Confidence comes from practice
The best way to feel confident in delivering your vision statement is to practice delivering your message. Some of the best speakers spend time practicing their presentations in front of a mirror before delivering them to large audiences. But, of course, you may not have a large audience, and there is nothing wrong with doing some practice run-throughs of what you want to say.
Practicing your delivery not only creates confidence, but it also helps you gain clarity as to how you and your message sound. In addition, listening to yourself practice the delivery of your vision allows you to refine the words and tone you use when delivering your message.
Clarity comes with being very clear on your message. The confidence to deliver that message, no matter how you do that, comes with having clarity and knowing the critical point you want the team to take away. Thinking about delivering your message in this way will support you in feeling confident in presenting it, no matter what the medium. Use plain language that connects with what the team does on a day-to-day basis. Being clear and confident will help you gain the best buy-in for delivering your vision in the coming year.
About the Author
Corey Loehr is the Chief Revenue Officer and a Director of OneFitStop. Since 2018 Corey has lead revenue growth and the development and execution of strategies for the practical adoption of innovative fitness business solutions. OneFitStop has a simple, but powerful vision to change the way the fitness industry operates, by providing the best-known solution capabilities to manage fitness business operations. Prior to joining OneFitStop, Corey spent 15 years leading sales at Intel, leading a team in the Asia Pacific – Japan region, to drive sales growth in the Retail, Hospitality and Consumer Goods vertical industries.