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3 Little Tricks That Will Make You Sound More Authoritative

3 Little Tricks That Will Make You Sound More Authoritative

Have you noticed how some people seem blessed with the ability to convince with their words? They are confident and powerful speakers – who know how to successfully deliver their messages. Unfortunately, for most of us, we don’t naturally have these skills. For example, when called on to speak in a team meeting, we may find ourselves stuttering our words, drifting from our core message, and generally sounding weak and ineffectual. Fortunately, there are several techniques you can use to instantly boost your credibility and authority.

1. Present both sides of an argument

Recent consumer psychology research has shown that two-sided arguments are more persuasive.[1] This may seem counterintuitive, as presenting only one side of a story would appear to be the obvious choice when looking to persuade people.

However, by presenting both sides of an argument, your audience will believe that you’ve studied your subject carefully and meticulously. They’ll also know that you’ve chosen your personal preference only after looking at all the facts.

A great example of this can be found on websites such as AliExpress, Amazon and eBay. These global, online retail giants encourage customers to rate products and services, and give feedback – good or bad. By offering this feature, people considering a purchase can quickly determine if a product or service is suitable for them.

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This system works perfectly. Picture the alternatives:

  • No ratings or feedback allowed
  • Only positive ratings or feedback allowed

Clearly, neither of these would be effective.

So remember, to persuade your audience to your point of view, be sure to present both sides of an argument.

2. Give key information at the start of your presentation

Are you familiar with a concept known as the “primacy effect?”[2] If not, here’s what you need to know.

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The primacy effect states that information given at the beginning of a sequence has a stronger and longer-lasting impact than information presented later. In other words, to have the most impact, you should place your key messages and benefits at the start of your presentation. By doing this, your audience will immediately perceive your information (and you) as being favorable, helpful, and instructive.

Of course, you don’t want to give all of your key information right at the outset, but just enough to catch your audience’s attention. If your presentation is broken down into sections, then start each of these sections with strong ideas and memorable stories.

By starting strongly, you’ll boost your self-confidence, while at the same time magically captivating your audience.

3. Remove the phrase “I think” from your sentences

A common problem with ineffective presenters is that they often begin sentences with the phrase: “I think…”

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In day-to-day conversations, this phrase is perfectly acceptable and normal. However, if you want to be a persuasive communicator, then you should definitely drop “I think” from your sentences. It’s all about sounding clear and decisive.

As an example for you, which of the below sounds the most convincing?

“I think our product is of high quality and has good value.”

“Our product is of high quality and has good value.”

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It’s obvious isn’t it? The second example goes straight to the point, and oozes confidence and strength, whereas the first example leaves a feeble impression.

Whenever you need to present information, adopt the three tips above to make yourself sound compelling and authoritative. Audiences will grasp your information quicker and easier. And they’ll also remember the key takeaways for far longer.

Try it and see for yourself.

Reference

More by this author

Craig J Todd

UK Writer who loves to use the power of words to inspire and motivate.

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Last Updated on January 21, 2020

How to Motivate People Around You and Inspire Them

How to Motivate People Around You and Inspire Them

If I was a super hero I’d want my super power to be the ability to motivate everyone around me. Think of how many problems you could solve just by being able to motivate people towards their goals. You wouldn’t be frustrated by lazy co-workers. You wouldn’t be mad at your partner for wasting the weekend in front of the TV. Also, the more people around you are motivated toward their dreams, the more you can capitalize off their successes.

Being able to motivate people is key to your success at work, at home, and in the future because no one can achieve anything alone. We all need the help of others.

So, how to motivate people? Here are 7 ways to motivate others even you can do.

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1. Listen

Most people start out trying to motivate someone by giving them a lengthy speech, but this rarely works because motivation has to start inside others. The best way to motivate others is to start by listening to what they want to do. Find out what the person’s goals and dreams are. If it’s something you want to encourage, then continue through these steps.

2. Ask Open-Ended Questions

Open-ended questions are the best way to figure out what someone’s dreams are. If you can’t think of anything to ask, start with, “What have you always wanted to do?”

“Why do you want to do that?”

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“What makes you so excited about it?”

“How long has that been your dream?”

You need this information the help you with the following steps.

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3. Encourage

This is the most important step, because starting a dream is scary. People are so scared they will fail or look stupid, many never try to reach their goals, so this is where you come in. You must encourage them. Say things like, “I think you will be great at that.” Better yet, say, “I think your skills in X will help you succeed.” For example if you have a friend who wants to own a pet store, say, “You are so great with animals, I think you will be excellent at running a pet store.”

4. Ask About What the First Step Will Be

After you’ve encouraged them, find how they will start. If they don’t know, you can make suggestions, but it’s better to let the person figure out the first step themselves so they can be committed to the process.

5. Dream

This is the most fun step, because you can dream about success. Say things like, “Wouldn’t it be cool if your business took off, and you didn’t have to work at that job you hate?” By allowing others to dream, you solidify the motivation in place and connect their dreams to a future reality.

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6. Ask How You Can Help

Most of the time, others won’t need anything from you, but it’s always good to offer. Just letting the person know you’re there will help motivate them to start. And, who knows, maybe your skills can help.

7. Follow Up

Periodically, over the course of the next year, ask them how their goal is going. This way you can find out what progress has been made. You may need to do the seven steps again, or they may need motivation in another area of their life.

Final Thoughts

By following these seven steps, you’ll be able to encourage the people around you to achieve their dreams and goals. In return, you’ll be more passionate about getting to your goals, you’ll be surrounded by successful people, and others will want to help you reach your dreams …

Oh, and you’ll become a motivational super hero. Time to get a cape!

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Featured photo credit: Thought Catalog via unsplash.com

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