By Lizette Volkwyn, International Master Life Coach, Published Author and Human Lie Detector
Do you feel that you have lost your voice in the workplace? Perhaps you identify to the following phrases:
“No one takes me seriously”, “My ideas are always put on the back burner”, “Every time there is a promotion, I am overlooked!”.
We hear or experience these phrases from time to time, usually after a disappointment, frustration or something that did not go our (planned) way. If this is your current reality, you have not used the right approach or you haven’t structured your communication in the right way.
Communication is more than just the 7% of verbal communication; it is also the how, when, why, where and what most people seem to neglect in the pursuit to make an impact.
To fully grasp the persuasion of an idea, a salary increase or just a point of view, we need to find the confidence within our own voice. Below, I provide 5 tips that you can apply to make an impact and make sure your voice is heard.
- Find the confidence in your own voice
It is easier said than done, particularly when you are desperate to persuade others to achieve a particular result. Here’s the truth: how do you expect someone to trust your message if you don’t believe in yourself?
To find the confidence, you must first have a clear understanding of what you want to communicate. Knowledge, planning, and roleplay scenarios all contribute to confidence.
Have a solid understanding of the subject. Whether it is a new direction suggestion, a salary increase or just convincing people to trust you to make future decisions. Preparation is key. Once you know the subject, start preparing three key points which you need to bring across. People get lost after three points, entice them with vital points, once hooked you can elaborate on other add-ons.
The more you roleplay the scenarios, the meaning and addressing several objections in your mind with answers, the more you will feel confident to bring the message across — people will feel compelled to hear you out.
- Understand your message in the simplest way
If you cannot explain your message to a six-year-old, then it is too complex. Your message should have an easy to understand, quick captive “I can see it work” statement and then you can elaborate with technical jargon and other buy-ins.
- Know your audience
We get so excited about our ideas and messages that we are prepared to preach it to anyone prepared to listen, just to find the message has been lost in translation, leaving us, without a voice that makes an impact.
No matter what message you want to bring across, you need to present it to the right audience to make it stick. Trying to convince the sales team to attend financial courses if there is no benefit for them, would they? Of course not, but if you proposed financial courses to the financial department decision-makers, you will hit the mark and have attentive listeners.
To be heard, you need to understand that everyone is listening from their point of view and what it is it in for them. Speak accordingly and you will see a clear shift in the way people communicate and listen.
- Embrace who you are
Nobody is YOU and that is your power. The moment you find yourself knowing who you truly are, and which core values is uniquely yours, you become unstoppable.
The way you carry yourself between colleagues, family and friends will immediately shift to become more assertive, confident and people will start taking note of what you have to say. Our subconscious will always override our presentation. If we do not really like ourselves it will be presented in our mannerisms and tonality of our voices.
- Let your truth be heard
Just because your message wasn’t well-received the first time around, does not mean you have failed. All of us have our own tribe, and within our own type of people, we will feel acknowledged, valued and respected. Don’t hide your truth to be accepted.
Speak up, with confidence, believe in your message and start walking the talk. A voice not heard or overlooked is just a message lost in translation. Clear the airwave as your voice matters.
Life isn’t always giving us the feedback you want to hear, but if you know how to let your voice be heard, you will be hearing a different melody in your world and see a clear shift in people’s reactions to you. It is time you confidently step up.