DON'T IMAGINE THAT YOUR AUDIENCE ARE NAKED - IMAGINE THE OPPOSITE
May 4, 2016
EMERGENCY CONFIDENCE ON REQUEST: PART 3
June 29, 2016
The last and final bit of the Emergency Confidence series will give you three tips you can use to boost your confidence when you're inside the meeting room or when you are speaking to your audience. Here we go:
Remember that the other person is on your side
This is something we tend to forget but it would be much more helpful if we focused on that rather than on what might go wrong. In the world that moves so fast, you don’t get invited to meetings or job interviews just because someone fancies a chat. If someone decided to devote 30 or 60 min of their workday to see you, it means that they already think highly of you. Now all you have to do is prove that they are right. If your self-talk tells you otherwise, re-read the previous point.
Maintain a good posture
Maintaining a good posture is not only healthy but also vital to conduct successful business meetings. As mentioned above our posture affects our mood and confidence levels, but not only. Our posture also affects how we sound. It’s difficult to speak clearly and confidently if you’re stretched on the sofa or slouching in the chair. Our posture also affects how others perceive us. If in doubt, sit up straight, maintain eye contact and tilt your upper body a little forward. Remember that it’s not only the content of your presentation but also the way you present it that will determine what the other person thinks of you, your company and your products or services.
Mind what you’re saying
Make sure you avoid words that weaken your message. “This will probably be the best solution” versus “This is the best solution”, “I will try to send you the report by the end of the week” versus “I will send you the report by the end of the week” or “You will receive the report by the end of the week” or “I don’t suppose we could meet next Monday...” There are certain words that weaken your message so you should avoid them. Those words are: “could”, “sorry”, “maybe”, “I don’t suppose”, “may”, “might”, “err...”, “um...”, “possibly”, “probably”. You may not even realise that you use them so play a game with yourself for the next few days and see which of them you tend to overuse in conversations. It should help you eliminate them and replace with a stronger equivalent.
I hope you have enjoyed this series. You will find that all those tips are easy to implement and give almost immediate results. I will also let you in on a secret - if you’re afraid of something, it tends to look and feel scarier to you than it really is. People who are afraid of spiders, for example, see them as bigger than they actually are (It’s true. I am one of them!). The same applies to presentations, meetings and interviews. I have coached many people who told me they were shaking inside when presenting or being interviewed but came across as competent and in control. It is worth remembering that what you feel is not necessary visible to others. We tend to be too critical of ourselves, especially when we are exposed to judgement but if you use the tips above and in the former posts, you will give yourself a better chance to ace any challenging meeting.
The full Emergency Confidence on Request article is available on Huffington Post.
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