Do you often get the feeling that you are ignored when you say something?
Or when you are in a group and when someone interrupts you, they instantly get the spotlight.
Or when everyone is speaking over each other and their ideas get instantly noticed, but when you try it, nothing happens.
Many people complain about having such issues, but only a few of them try to upgrade their conversation skills.
“The human voice is the instrument we all play, it’s the most powerful sound in the world. It can start wars or express love and yet many people have the experience that when they speak no one listens to them”. These words were the opening line on Julian Treasure Ted Talk. He is the chair of the Sound Agency that consults worldwide firms and businesses on how to properly use the power of sound.
Within he’s Ted talk he reveals why people don’t want to listen to what you have to say and what to do to get their attention. Based on his experience and gathered knowledge here are the 7 ‘deadly sins’ of conversation that you unconsciously use when speaking with others.
- Gossiping (Speaking about a certain person that isn’t present, and probably speaking nasty things about them)
- Negativity (Constantly being negative on every subject)
- Judging (Judging the person who is your conversation companion)
- Excuses (Passing problems onto the world about your failures)
- Complaining (People have enough problems on their own and just simply don’t want to hear yours)
- Lying (Being dishonest gives a negative look on your personality that distance people from you)
- Dogmatism (Mixing up facts and opinions)
In order to get the attention of your audience, Julian Treasure uses a method called H.A.I.L which was tested on more than 200 participants that implemented the method as a communication technique. The results from this study confirmed the effect of the H.A.I.L method which stands for:
H Honesty (Not necessary brutal honesty like “you look awful today”, but honesty tempered by love)
A Authenticity (Don’t try to be someone else that is more interesting than you, instead be yourself)
I Integrity (Be your word, people often appreciate others who do what they say)
L Love (Always strive for the positive things in life, wishing people good luck and such)
Julian Treasure also pointed the fact that the level of volume you use during a conversation is also a crucial element to the science of speaking. Examine the current conversation and used a certain level of volume that can be adaptable to the other participants. It’s not always what you say but how you say it. Spice up your vocals using these methods:
Register – People often tend to register deeper voices as a sign of power and authority. In order to achieve a deeper voice level practice ‘speaking form your chest’.
Timber – The way your voice feels to others. Is worm and confrontable to listen to or is it cold and uncomfortable to listen to.
Pace – The perfect tempo that you need to use is not too fast but also not too slow.
Prosody – Try not to be monotone. Change the tempo in your tone of voice.
Pitch – Using ‘fancy’ words will get you the attention of others.
Volume – Speak loud enough so that people an listen to you but not too loud because you don’t want to annoy others.
These methods have been proven over and over again and with the right implementation it can definitely improve your conversation skills and boost your confidence level.