Monday, January 10, 2011

Workplace public speaking: Are your messages being heard?

In this New York Times blog post, "Are Your Messages Being Heard?," you'll find 7 concrete suggestions for how to make sure you get your point across or reach your target, from why you should smile to why the three-point message works:
There is evidence that humans can only accept seven bits of information in a moment. If you give us eight, we’ll reject them all (see “The Magical Number Seven, Plus or Minus Two,” a paper published in 1956 by George Miller, a Princeton professor). Three is holy — we can all remember three points.

The first suggestions, "ask for permission," might make women hesitate. After all, shouldn't women stop asking for permission to speak? But that point simply notes that you're asking whether the listener is willing to hear more. In that light, consider it a "check-in" with your listener. What do you think of these tips? Share your thoughts (and your own tips) in the comments.

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