I often work with leaders on their communication skills and was thrilled to come across the ‘Sound like a leader’ Ted Talk. Not only does Nicola Sicola discuss EVERYTHING I train, but she also re-emphasises my core message that your voice impacts your image as a leader.
This was illustrated last year when I attended an event featuring future female leaders within a particular sector. This was the celebration of a year long programme where future leaders were mentored and coached to be, well awesome. However, when they each delivered 1 minute presentations describing their experiences, future leaders is the last way they were presented. Their body language in every case was closed; arms across their chests, heads down, ankles crossed when standing and heads down. And not only was their speech weak and girlie but the vocabulary used was consistently soft. What made it even more scary was that apparently they had been coached in presentation skills. There was no evidence of this.
Watch the TED Talk here:
These individuals had failed to match their position as potential leaders, with their spoken message; non-verbal communication and vocal tone. Instead they delivered a confused message of young women looking bewildered and out of place, at an amazing event celebrating future leadership. I blame the coach who had not prepared these young women in any way. The person sat next to me; a big shot buyer within this industry said “No way would I buy any service from these women”. And he was right; none of the women projected any confidence and the audience, in truth had little confidence in their abilities based on how their presented themselves.
Remember when you present yourself as a leader – and we are all leaders, remember other people will judge you on:
- What you say
- The language you use
- Your non-verbal communication
- vocal tone
My latest complimentary webinar is on 16th April, where I will share 5 tips for presenting. Register here.