What are you trying to say??
If you want to sound confident, project confidence and feel confident, then you need to prepare. You need to prepare a script, a response, and an answer to help move you forward in any situation or experience.
Nobody likes a rambler (especially in meetings!), so to be taken seriously make sure your contribution to the discussion is concise and well thought out. You must be articulate in your answers, and think them through in your mind BEFORE you speak.
So many people just utter whatever nonsense is bouncing around in their minds. Don’t be one of them.
How to communicate authority.
You can have a great idea, great product or service, but if it’s not communicated effectively, confidently and with authority, what’s the point?
- Prepare a script. What are your skills and how can they add value to another business? That’s what you need to figure out and communicate effectively.
- Practice. Stop believing you’re supposed to be born articulate. That’s just the perfectionist in you. People practice this. That’s the only way to get better.
- Study other speakers – Watch TED Talks (especially other women!) and watch how they captivate an audience. Take notes, why were they successful? Why was their message captivating. Obviously my favorites are Sheryl Sandberg and Brenee Brown
- Avoid apologizing before you speak! This is such a common occurrence that most women aren’t even aware of how often they apologize while speaking. Never start off by saying “Sorry to interrupt…..Sorry, maybe you’ve already heard this, but…..I apologize if you’ve already discussed this, but…” See what I mean? It’s horrid, just stop apologizing.
- Stop speaking in questions. Your statements shouldn’t sound like questions. I’ve written a book? (Are you telling me or asking me?) I‘ll finish the report by noon today?” (What?? Will the report be finished or not?) — Women frequently reframe their statements into questions as a way to soften their message, hoping to sound more approachable. In reality, this type of speaking just makes you sound uncertain, tentative and less confident. It’s also a little desperate sounding, like you’re pleading with your audience.
- Pace yourself. You don’t need to rush through your pitch or your idea. You can take a pause.
- What does your voice sound like? Oh my goodness, please don’t sound like one of the Kardashians with their infantile girly voice. We all know this high-pitched teenage-sounding voice. Don’t use it. Ask yourself, do you have a voice that people want to listen to? Do you sound like a leader when you speak? Or do people cover their ears and grimace?
Have you listened to any powerful women speakers lately? Send me your top picks, I’d love to hear them!