People who begin work on their speaking skills don’t usually see themselves as starting a long-term journey. They usually begin because of the demands of a particular situation or a new role. Maybe they’ve advanced to a more senior position and have to address larger groups for the first time. Maybe they’re carrying added responsibility for driving results in a new division or organization. Or they’re newly responsible for introducing a fresh product or service to the market.
As they work on their speaking for that new situation or that new role, they begin to get a sense of what’s possible for them personally and professionally. And, they begin to want more in their journey. So… little by little their whole attitude toward communication changes. What they had looked at as only a “skill” becomes a passion; what they had looked at only as a tool for accomplishing their job in their journey, becomes the core of the job itself.
Whatever the particular stimulus that initiates that journey, it’s usually something that makes you aware of your own discomfort… you feel you’re not responding as successfully, or functioning as effectively as you’d like. So the journey typically begins with an unwelcome focus on the self and a need to build confidence for the challenge ahead. That’s the first step… becoming comfortable and effective.
Soon enough though – for those that embrace it – comes the realization that there is more. We know that “making something happen” is the ultimate goal in business communication and that comfort and effectiveness isn’t enough. Because accomplishing our objectives depends on others – their input, their support, and understanding. So, the journey reaches its second stage… the desire to be persuasive, and the focus shifts to our listeners.
From this point in the journey you’re advancing on two fronts: continuing to explore and express yourself, and more openly reaching out to others. You’re not just communicating; you’re beginning to build relationships… relationships that are built on this journey’s third step – connecting through trust.
And trust – along with the results it drives – leads to the ultimate destination for all those who commit to this journey – leadership. By knowing yourself, you have learned to know others. By reaching in you have learned to reach out. And, with a style of your own, you communicate in a away that stirs people… inspiring them to believe, to act, and even to change. You are leading.
But the journey is far from over. Instead, it has brought you to a new threshold… to a further journey of great opportunity and far reaching possibility.
Speakeasy is a U.S. based development group – working with executives all over the world to help them achieve success by becoming the most powerful communicators they can be. For forty years, our highly credentialed, American trained and licensed consultants have used a deep, behavioral-based methodology to help individuals and entire organizations become better at both what they say… and how they say it.