Strong verbal communication skills are important for everyone and are extremely valuable in both your personal and professional life. When speaking clearly, confidently, and with poise, you are much more likely to command the respect of others and build rapport. This is particularly important within business interactions.
The following 7 tips will help you to improve your verbal communication skills so that you can better connect with your audience, earn respect, and build the relationships necessary for your successful business interactions:
Think before you speak:
Organising your thoughts in advance can eliminate many of the awkward moments that can occur when speaking. It will also help you relay your information more concisely. While writing down your thoughts is not always possible, it is still effective to take a minute to organise your thoughts in your mind before you begin to speak.
Be clear and concise:
The most effective way to get your point across is to make it in a clear and concise manner. Avoid using any complex, convoluted sentences, and try to state your argument in direct language. Before speaking, ask yourself, “What is the clearest way I can make my point?”
Speak with confidence:
Speaking in a confident manner will help you build trust and command the respect of your audience. There are several factors, which can affect your ability to speak confidently, including your command of the subject matter. Your word choice, the tone of your voice, your body language, and your ability to make direct eye contact with your audience, can also affect your confidence to speak clearly.
Vary your vocal tone:
Speaking in a monotone voice will completely bore your audience. Instead, use voice inflection to add emphasis to important points, and vary the pitch of your voice to express emotion. This will help keep your audience engaged in your message.
Be a good listener:
Being a good listener is as important as being a good speaker, and it will improve the quality of your verbal interactions. It shows the people you are speaking with that you genuinely care about their ideas, and it helps ensure you understand their needs. This will enable you to build trust and rapport much quicker.
Be aware of your non-verbal communication cues:
Your body language significantly impacts the way others interpret what you say. Pay attention to the gestures you make, your facial expressions, and your body language to ensure they align with the message you are trying to get across.
Think about the perspective of your audience:
Just because you have a strong command of a topic doesn’t mean the people you are speaking to have the same knowledge as you. Try to think about how someone else will understand what you are trying to communicate, particularly if they lack the technical knowledge about a subject that you possess.