How to Speak with Confidence

PWC model finalOne of the problems with becoming a leader is that you must do activities that you weren’t necessarily trained for. What I mean by that is, most people are trained technically but not trained how to communicate effectively. Many employees stand out in the workplace because they’re great technically, then all of a sudden, they get elevated to being a leader and then get asked to run meetings and present ideas persuasively. Below are the five levels I believe people function on when they’re presenting ideas. I’d love to hear which level you think your spending most of your time at the moment.

1. Fear
The first level is where we experience fear. When you’re experiencing fear, it’s because your main focus is on yourself. Asking yourself questions like “What will they think of me?” and “Will I mess up?” and “What will go wrong?” make you focus on yourself.

2. Confusion
This is where you’ve moved past being fearful in your presentation but are simply relying on your intuition around how to deliver it. It’s a very hit-and-miss game.

3. Clarity
This is where you have clarity around a good structure to follow, like the 4MAT Model. You understand how to manage people’s objections during a presentation and design content persuasively.

4. Confidence
This is where your focus is actually on your audience. You ask questions like “What would be a great outcome for them?” and “What do they need from me?” and “What is going on in their world?”

5. Conviction
This is where you’re focusing on the purpose of your presentation. In other words, what impact would this have on not only other people but on the greater good or greater organisation? When you speak with conviction, there is a deep sense of purpose behind your communication pieces.

The first three are focused on what you DO. The last two are focused on who you need to BE.

I’m wondering, which level do you tend to spend most of your time on when presenting?


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  • Barrie Morgan
    Posted at 03:44h, 27 August Reply

    Hello Colin,
    As a technical person I am now in a more leadership role so I can relate to this post very well. Items 1, 2, 4 & 5 I have little problem with. I some times trip up on the clarity point. I know what I want to deliver and have a vision of the out come but some times get bogged in the mechanics of the actual delivery.
    Cheers, Barrie

    • Colin Boyd
      Posted at 04:58h, 27 August Reply

      Hey Barrie, thanks for your comment. The clarity one is actually the technical side of the presentation skills, so it does require some training. Thanks so much for taking the time to comment. Keep up the great work!

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