When it comes to professional leadership, the ability to communicate with clarity, confidence, and executive presence is one of the most essential skills for success. This means you need to polish not only your content and message, but the way you deliver it. According to research published by the Wall Street Journal, how you say something actually matters twice as much as what you actually say! Whether you are already a woman in power, or are looking to expand your professional role and transition to a leadership position, honing your speaking skills is an indispensable part of professional development. Take a look at our three tips for taking your communication to the next level:
- Breathe for Power: Speaking with a dynamic, powerful voice is key to exuding a commanding presence. Vocal power begins with correct breathing. To get the best breath support, breathe from your diaphragm; when you take a deep breath, your abdomen should expand rather than your chest.
- Cut out Fillers: Fillers are little meaningless words and phrases that people often inject into their speech (e.g., “um”, “like”, “you know”, etc.). Although the occasional filler may be inevitable, too many can make you sound unsure of yourself. Try recording yourself during a phone call or presentation, and count how many times you use filler words—you should be using a maximum of two fillers every two minutes. Need help reducing your filler reliance? Check out our 4-step system for reducing fillers.
- Avoid Upspeak: Have you ever spoken with someone who sounds like they’re asking a question, even with they’re making a statement? This is called upspeak, the habit of continually raising your tone at the end of a sentence. Not only can upspeak be distracting, in a professional situation, it can make you sound as though you lack confidence and are unsure of what you’re saying. Take care to monitor your tone when you speak to sound professional and authoritative.
Want to learn more? Take a look at this video from Corporate Speech Solutions founder and President Jayne Latz to hear more great strategies for communicating with clarity and confidence!
Would you or a colleague benefit from communication training or accent reduction services? Give us a call and see how Corporate Speech Solutions can improve your professional life! Call us at 212-308-7725 or send us an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more. I’d be more than happy to answer any questions you might have!
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