Reduce your Accent and Break Through the Corporate Glass Ceiling
Raj, very talented in the financial world, rose up quickly through the ranks of his company and couldn’t penetrate the glass ceiling to the VP level. In day to day conversation he felt that he was easily understood and so didn’t think his accent was holding him back. However, talking fast with a heavy accent, while giving presentations on very complex strategies, was so difficult for his peers to understand that they became extremely frustrated and stopped listening. He told me that his wife, who is a medical doctor, was told straight away by her professors to reduce her accent because her patients, out of fear of not understanding her, would ask immediately for another doctor.
In the world of performance reviews in corporate America, many people are not told that their accent is holding them back. Pure and simple everyone has an accent and the goal is to be easily and readily understood by the people in the country in which you are living and working.
When you Speak do you Captivate the Audience?
Last night I went to see the new movie “The Internship” which took place at Google headquarters in Calif. To me it illustrated that the quality of our communication directly affects the quality of our life. How you are perceived either isolates us or brings us together.
All the very bright young Interns who have big dreams, have been selected to attend the Google internship week, during which they compete for very few jobs. The catch is that they have to display their skills in a team format. This means team work and excellent communication skills not only within the team but extended out to the nearby community of Stanford, California.
One Powerful Speech Skill to Keep Your Competitive Edge!
Project, Project, Project! Come across vividly, make a memorable impression and have the competitive edge over all the other speakers in the room. Projecting gives your voice power and keeps your message ringing in the ears of your listener.
When you are young, you hear the word project tossed around a lot by parents, and teachers, but nobody really tells you how to do it, so it still remains a mystery and most people just talk.
It’s a shame because projecting is what makes people sit up and listen. Have you ever said something important in a business meeting and no one pays attention and then 5 minutes later, the person 4 chairs away says the same thing and gets all the credit? Why? You got it he or she projects loud and clear.
One Ancient Speech Secret That Gets Great Results
The ancient Greeks discovered that “The Voice is the Megaphone of the Soul”. They knew that it was your voice that fascinates and captivates an audience and telegraphs your soul power as you speak. It is obvious in singers, like Aretha Franklin, Pavarotti, Andrea Bocelli, Whitney Houston, Stevie Wonder just to name a few of the many great singers.
Breathing is the secret for both singers and speakers. Good breath support for your speaking voice is what the ancient Greeks discovered and what many of us today in our hurried world often ignore. It is the energy of your breath that sets free the soul power of your speaking voice.
Obviously we are all breathing if we are alive, however again in our nano second world we either hold our breath or breathe shallowly while sitting behind our computers and only breathe deeply when we are in the gym or out running. For health reasons it is necessary to breathe well and doctors like Andrew Weill have taught us this with his CD program “Breathing is the Key to Self-Healing”.
One Modern Speech Habit that Causes Bad Results
Marilyn who had been a lawyer with an East Coast Insurance Firm was now living and practicing law near a major city in Texas. This is a big city she thought and so they will appreciate my skills in the court room and she went right out and landed one of the best jobs in the best law firms in town. The next thing she heard, while giving a brief in front of a male judge who had a heavy Texas accent was “ I’m sorry little lady, you gotta slow down if you expect me and the jury to understand you”.
Number one, Marilyn was shocked to be called little lady and two she was shocked that her fast talking, which had been prized in the East Coast insurance world, was now being ridiculed in front of the entire court room.
I was so shocked, she told me, that I checked in with the head of my law firm, thinking that this particular judge had a bias against woman lawyers from back East. And my boss told me, “Go get help with your speech” so that the judges will feel more comfortable while you speaking in court on behalf of you clients.