technique

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It’s Never Too Early to Polish Your Speaking Skills!

beautiful-15704_1280Earlier this month, Accent On Business hosted ten home-schooled teenagers for a public speaking practice and evaluation session. The teens, who go by the name Franklin Homeschool Group, included a mix of sophomores, juniors and seniors – three boys and seven girls – who hail from various churches in the Franklin, IN area. These young people presented speeches on some weighty and very timely topics. One student championed Dr. King and his fight to end racial oppression as a role model for overcoming current trends in marginalization of at-risk populations such as the elderly, unborn and disabled; another spoke about choosing gratitude over excess. And one young lady spoke about the difficult subject of self-abuse among ‘tweens and teens.

One thing was clear in listening to these young men and women deliver each of their 8-10 minute speeches: they were passionate about their subjects and they had a […]

It’s Not Just What You Say, It’s How You Say It

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We all use “credibility detectors” when listening to someone talk to us.  These sensors in the brain are activated by tone of voice and body language, not words.  They give us important information about the speaker’s sincerity, integrity, and emotional intelligence.  Some people equate this to the “gut-level hunch” we often sense.  When kids listen to adults speak, they listen to the “strength” of the message for cues about whether or not the adult means what he or she is saying.

Do you “say it like you mean it”?  Women often are not taken seriously for one of three reasons.  First, her voice may be too quiet, making her sound unsure and non-authoritative.  Second, she is too high-pitched, making her sound like a little girl or a cheerleader.  Or third, she puts more inflection at the end of a sentence, making her sound […]

2017-06-15T21:07:43+00:00By |Categories: Professional Communication|Tags: , , , , , , , , , |Comments Off on It’s Not Just What You Say, It’s How You Say It

Tips to prepare yourself for selling by phone

smartphone-431230_1280Prepare for your call by making sure your style of communication (the HOW) matches your message.  To start off with a warm, friendly message:

  1. Think of a key word which represents the tone of voice you wish to create (warm, friendly), such as “tender”, “calm”, “sunshine”, “cozy”.  Repeat that one key word to yourself several times with emphasis until you feel it.
  2. Picture the mental image.  Visualize hugging a child or your spouse, wrapping up in a blanket by the fireplace, walking along the beach in the bright sun.  Make the picture clear and vivid.
  3. Change the sound of your voice by changing your body tone and placement.
  • For a warm, friendly voice you must first relax. Inhale, then exhale slowly.
  • Look into the mirror and smile.
  • Talk expressively with energy.
  • Move.  Make your movements BIG and FLUID.

Eliminating Throat Clearing

 

Throat clearing is one of the most traumatic things you can do to your vocal folds. When you clear your throat, you create an extreme amount of movement of your vocal folds, causing them to slam and rub together.  Sometimes people do not even know that they are clearing their throats; it has become a habit.  Often they say that they feel something in their throat, like phlegm or mucus.  The majority of the time; however, when you clear your throat, there is simply nothing there.  One thing you have accomplished is to create more vocal fold trauma.

 

We […]

Good Business Cent$

money-605077_1280TOP 10 BENEFITS TO A COMPANY ENSURING EFFECTIVE COMMUNICATION:

10.   Attracting and hiring qualified and desirable employees.
9.     Employees are managed effectively and motivated which increases productivity.
8.     Job tasks are readily understood and properly executed reducing the margin of error.
7.     Information is well organized and disseminated correctly, facilitating meeting deadlines.
6.     Interactions with vendors are consistent, which enhances purchasing power.
5.     Staff longevity is increased due to greater loyalty to the employer.
4.     Perception of the company is strengthened which helps to promote future growth and development, leading to increased revenue.
3.     Internal customer satisfaction is enhanced which increases quality assurance.
2.     External customer satisfaction is increased helping to retain existing customer base.
1.     Satisfied external customers readily support your company which encourages new customers and leads to increased […]

How Much Do Poor Communication Skills Really Cost?

 

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TOP TEN RISKS TO A COMPANY WITH INEFFECTIVE COMMUNICATION:

  1. Inability to attract qualified job applicants.
  2. Poor hiring decisions.
  3. Miscommunication of key information resulting in either rework or errors.
  4. Staff burnout due to low morale and lack of motivation.
  5. Reduced staff retention and subsequent increased staff turnover.
  6. Inability to meet critical deadlines.
  7. Costly purchasing errors with vendors.
  8. Damage to company image and loss of revenue.
  9. Frustration among internal customers which leads to downtime.
  10. Misperceptions and frustrations among external customers which equates to dissatisfied customers.

As you can deduce from the preceding top ten risks, ineffective communication is generally not limited to one or two situations or a few employees. Rather it can start out on a small scale and if left unattended, can have a spiraling effect across departments. This can manifest itself in a pervasive company problem, which often leads to finger pointing […]

2017-06-15T21:07:44+00:00By |Categories: Professional Communication|Tags: , , , , , , , , , |Comments Off on How Much Do Poor Communication Skills Really Cost?

Can A Smile Change Your Day?

fun-20008_1280CJ McClanahan, President of Reachmore Strategies is our guest blogger today.  To learn more about Reachmore Strategies please check out their website: http://www.goreachmore.com/

Can a smile really change your entire day?

 I would argue that for many (if not most) of us the answer is yes!  Consider what is going on in the workplace today.  Much of our communication is being reduced to email, instant messages, texts and now even “tweets”.

As a direct result, we have less and less meaningful face to face communication with actual human beings. So, when we do (even if you aren’t a social person) we crave the personal interaction.  In addition, we tend to pay attention to less of what we hear out of their mouths as what we see in their appearance and expressions.

Consider the following scenario…

You have a 5 minute meeting with your […]

Capitalize on Social Opportunities

In a crowded room you should see a bubble over each person’s head that reads “OPPORTUNITY!” in big bold letters.

Listening is a Sign of Respect

listening-157386_1280Think of your last conversation.  If you remember what you said more clearly than what you heard, you probably need to work on your listening skills.

Listening is a sign of respect.  It shows that you value what the speaker has to say.  If you take the time to listen to someone, take the time to listen properly.  Set aside what you are doing so you can focus on the speaker, showing them that they are important to you.  This will encourage the speaker to crystallize his message instead of giving you a shortened and vague version.  If you continue to focus on your work, you may miss key gestures or facial expressions that may indicate the speaker’s true feelings differ from his words.

It’s not always easy to focus on what a speaker is trying to say, especially if he has distracting idiosyncrasies.  […]

Stuttering: Advice for Listeners

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Often, people are unsure about how to respond when talking to people who stutter. This uncertainty can cause listeners to do things like look away during moments of stuttering, interrupt the speaker or fill in words, or simply not talk to people who stutter at all. None of these reactions is particularly helpful, though. In general, people who stutter want to be treated just like anybody else. They recognize-in fact, they may be acutely aware-that their speech is different and that it takes them longer to say things. Unfortunately, though, this sometimes leads the speaker to feel pressure to speak quickly. Under such conditions, people who stutter often have even more difficultly saying what they want to say in a smooth, timely manner. Thus, listener reactions that suggest impatience or annoyance may actually make it harder for people who stutter to speak.

When […]

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