We all want to be that person who can vividly describe ideas and paint colorful pictures with words. It almost seems like magic the way they captivate audiences with their voice. What can you do to become that person? Is it possible to change how others perceive you? It certainly isn’t magic. Here are 4 ways to help you be more engaging.
We highly value making a good impression, especially in our workplace. It’s natural to take on a role that fits what we think others expect of us. People can usually detect when you’re trying to be someone you’re not. Can you smell “fake” from a mile away? Sure you can, but so can everybody else. Just be yourself and make your authenticity stand out. You’ll be more likable and people will trust what you say because you are honest and authentic.
Make sure your message doesn’t sound flat. Use full voice. You will sound more confident if you open your mouth wide. Try to reduce vocal fillers. Instead, pause between sentences and try not to think ahead too much.
Avoid words like “kind of, sort of, maybe”. They will impact both how authentic and confident you sound. You can build better language habits by avoiding these words. How does “I was hoping I could just get a little bit of your time to talk about an idea” sound? “Hoping”, “just a little”, “could maybe”, and “try to” all impact the listener’s perception of how confident you are.
Know Your Stuff
If you know what you’re talking about, you’ll sound more authentic because you are. How do you think “I’m no expert, but I think…” sounds? If I’m no expert, is what I am about to say even contributing to the conversation? Whether you’re pitching an idea, training co-workers or talking to a customer, make sure you know your stuff.
The best way to become more engaging is to practice these four tips with a voice recorder. Simply record a conversation and identify trigger words, vocal fillers, volume, and tone. Reenact the conversation with changes that will make you sound more engaging.