Warning: Don’t offer leadership trainings until you read this

Do you require public speaking workshops in your leadership programs? You should.

According to Mind Tools, leaders need public speaking skills:
“Even if you don’t need to make regular presentations in front of a group, there are plenty of situations where good public speaking skills can help you advance your career and create opportunities.

For example, you might have to talk about your organization at a conference, make a speech after accepting an award, or teach a class to new recruits.

However, while good public speaking skills can open doors, poor speaking skills can close them. For example, your boss might decide against promoting you after sitting through a poorly-delivered presentation. You might lose a valuable new contract by failing to connect with a prospect during a sales pitch. Or you could make a poor impression with your new team, because you trip over your words and don’t look people in the eye.”

In brief, public speaking development helps break down 3 barriers, opening 3 doors that leaders need open.

Door #1 LISTENERS

When those we lead feel their voice is heard and their experiences and ideas are valuable, leadership is working. It’s not only what leaders DO, that demonstrates respect and value to their direct reports, it’s how they RESPOND – the tone they set, what they talk about and how they relate to their followers.

In public speaking workshops, we focus on audience, shifting importance from the speaker to the listener. We practice relating our ideas with various techniques that immediately apply to leadership circumstances of conflict resolution, self-management, understanding the team, and what is needed to shift attitudes or create action. Click here for FREE report on 3 Things Great Speakers Do.

Door #2 MESSAGE

Yes, leaders have an overwhelming amount of areas to oversee. So overwhelming that unless they are given a structure for keeping things simple, like speakers are trained in, their messages become incomprehensible.

With public speaking workshops participants are tasked to apply a message structure for both planned messages and off-the-cuff. Just like with public speaking circumstances, leaders work on messages for upcoming committees or individuals (whether to celebrate, update or resolve challenges) but also respond in the moment to interruptions and unanticipated disruptions and needs. Their leadership-by-speech is often what influences their success.

Door #3 CONFIDENCE

Body language says much more than our words. Open gestures vs. finger-pointing, slumps vs. poise all resonate to our observers. Visibility, just like saying “yes” to speaking, is a sign that we are okay with being in front of the team. We don’t come by body language skills naturally. So the door to confidence can quickly close without attention on how to show confidence.

Confidence is an attribute public speakers work on, because it leads to effective performance. Self-talk drills, focus exercises prior to an important speech and ease of handling the moment strengthens a speaker’s impact. Leaders who exude confidence, despite what they feel, handle problems, effect change and show what they are made of.

Does your leadership program include public speaking? If not, any of these 3 doors may quickly close, creating barriers to your intended effectiveness. Give your leaders a chance to prove they can open them.

Let Merri know if you are interested in Peer Presentation Group workshops

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