If you’re wondering about the key qualities great speakers share, look no further.
Having spent over the last 10 years on stage, I’ve had the privilege of speaking to thousands of people over the years, via different mediums, at different functions and events… and taking notes on what worked and what didn’t.
I began my journey by observing and learning from other speakers. I joined the Toastmasters to practice and experiment with different techniques on different audiences.
I sincerely believed, and I still believe, that public speaking and communication abilities are skills that can be learned and honed.
One of the first things I set out to do, when I started was to identify key qualities that made one an excellent public speaker.
I sincerely believed that, if we could emulate the qualities/use some of the techniques that the best speakers use, then we too could become like them.
And so, that journey of observation and emulation has taken me on a roller-coaster ride of a career spanning 10 years and counting.
Today, I’d like to share an account of Five Key Qualities to Help you Shine on Stage
Audiences love to know that you care about the subject and their well-being at heart. This means, no hidden agendas, and going the extra mile to ensure that the audience gets what they want – be it information, insights or entertainment.
In most instances, they want to know that you care about them.
Regardless of how successful or rich one is, or even how experienced you are in your field, nobody truly cares about what you have, until they know how much you care.
Sure, most would afford you a degree of interest and attention, if anything to learn – most likely to take something away from you. That interest, however would be superficial, and it’ll be harder to move them to do something you want them to do at the end of the presentation.
That ability to remain humble, and giving has a huge positive impact on the audience. It suggests a huge degree of empathy, which translates into forming an emotional connection with those seated before you.
Check out this video, of a social experiment in action. Which of the characters do you relate positively with?
#3 Insightful Perspectives
To come across as an expert, it’s always great to share insights that are not commonly known. These includes perspectives relating to schools of thought, and even includes those stemming from personal experiences .
Sharing insightful perspectives helps the audience see things that they do not commonly come across, which benefits them by providing them with more information to make better decisions.
#4 Noteworthy Information
Speakers who share noteworthy information, also do their audiences a favour by distilling key points from the noisy and chaotic world of information available to us.
Noteworthy information may include evergreen truths, new insights and perspectives that challenges conventional perspectives, or even the latest developments in a specific field.
It is the challenge for every speaker to decide what are the key points to include in their talk, and how to keep it as concise as possible like a laser.
Arguably one of the biggest discoveries I made, and one of the first areas I began working on when I embarked on my learning journey in public speaking.
I’ve come to learn, that best speakers are adept at influencing the energy in a room, and they do so via a combination of vocal dynamics and body language signals. Those, and the ability read and empathize with the audience, and to adapt their content and massage their messages in a way that suits and resonates with the people they speak to.
That part on crafting content is a huge art by itself. Yet, how many times have we went into a room with a speaker who brings with them great content, yet fail to engage or uplift the mood simply because of a lack of energy?
Conversely, how many times have we went into a room, got completely blown away by the energy of another speaker… only to realize that we’ve hardly learned a practical thing a few days later?
I won’t say which example is better, for the ones I’ve just presented are two extremes.
However, I sincerely believe that a great speaker is one who is not only able to engage and entertain, but also deliver hard-hitting ideas that the audience can work with as well.
The five points I’ve covered above are broad qualities we an all aim for in our quest to become better speakers.
If you feel that there are other qualities that deserve mention as well, feel share them in the comments section below.
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Here’s looking forward to connecting with you!