Did you know that non-verbal communication counts for 93% of our communication? That means only 7% is based on the words we used. So why is it we all spend hours trying to get the content of our presentations correct rather than focusing on the other 93%?
We might have a fantastic talk, speech, presentation, or whatever you want to call it, but if you haven’t thought about how you are going to deliver it, then no one will be listening anyway.
Non-verbal communication includes body language and gesture (55%) and voice or tonality (38%). So even the simple things such as your smile, eye contact and posture should be high on your priority of things to get right.
Studies show that we will think someone is more competent if they have a genuine smile and eye contact. It’s important to remember the word, genuine smile….if you try and fake a smile it can look a little scary. Try and think of something funny if you are struggling to find that genuine smile.
When it comes to your voice, think about how you are going to use your pacing, pitch, pause and volume. When you practise your speech think about these things. Can you be heard, are you speaking too quickly?
This is a generalisation, but men tend to be more monotone than women. If you know this is something you have a habit of doing, then think about ways to raise the energy in your voice and use more of your notes, or more of your pitch. For women we tend to be rather shrill when we are under pressure, and can often convey too much emotion. If this sounds familiar then try lowering your voice slightly and focus on slowing the pace down.
Of course the words (7%) are also important, but don’t forget the 93% that isn’t being said.