Not all managers and CEOs have solid public speaking abilities; some are quite terrible at it. Believe it or not, sometimes the smartest people end up having the most boring presentations. They can’t see that public speaking is based on acquired skills that can only be improved through honest feedback and practice. Holding a presentation in front of 50 people is easier said than done. Most managers ignore some of the main rules of public speaking, and they usually fail to grab the attention of their audiences. Here are 10 mistakes that people often make when speaking in public.

1) Failure to convey authenticity

Skilled public speakers convey authenticity. They can gauge attention and keep an audience hooked for as long as their speech lasts. Lack of authenticity makes an audience assume that you have a shallow, superficial personality. To engage your listeners, why not start the presentation with a meaningful story? Share something personal, something that can make people relate to what you’re saying.

2) Bad opening sentence

Nothing sounds shallower than an opening sentence that says – “thank you all for being here”. Of course you’re thankful for them being there, but you don’t have to say it out loud. Rather than bore them with a disagreeable statement, say something interesting, motivational or even funny like – “Mark Twain once said that there are two main types of speakers in this world: the nervous ones and the liars. Guess what? I’m in the first category!”

3) Imitating other speakers

This is one of the worst things speakers can do when starting a presentation. Why would want to imitate someone else? When you’re not being yourself in front of an audience, it’s impossible to appear authentic. You just can’t seem believable no matter how hard you tried.

4) Sharing unoriginal stories

Sharing stories that are not yours is such a rookie move. What will you do if someone from the audience recognizes it from somewhere else? You can’t afford to make a fool of yourself in front of 50-100 people, so you are advised to stories from your own life.

5) Using fillers and too many repetitions

Fillers words are ever-present in our daily speeches. Managers however, should avoid them in the professional environment. Repeating the same thing over and over again is annoying; in addition, adding fillers such as “um”, “ahh” will make things worse. Keep sentences short if you’re nervous and when you don’t know what to say, ask questions to engage the audience.

6) Talking too fast

Speaking too fast in front of an audience indicates clear signs of anxiety and nervousness. Take a deep breath before starting your speech and learn to control your volume of words; find a pace and stick to it.

7) Vocal unawareness

A monotonous vocal tone is unappealing. It doesn’t excite an audience and it doesn’t make people want to hear more. Rather than appear dull and uninteresting in front of your staff, speak with relaxed enthusiasm; let your voice soothe the audience and they’ll certainly want to hear what you have to say.

1909_Tyee_-_Debate_and_Oratory_illustration8) Not answering questions

Managers and company owners who don’t like to answer questions when holding speeches are often seen as the most superficial individuals. Not wanting to respond to someone’s concern highlights disrespect; in time, this can affect the bottom line of your company.

9) Not feeling comfortable

Not all managers feel comfortable when having to hold a presentation in front of staff members, customers or investors. Sadly, if you can’t find a way to forget about your discomfort, your audience will sense something’s wrong. Your tone of voice will probably change, your body language, even your face expressions. Answer yourself the following question – what makes you feel comfortable? Some people feel safer when during a public speech if they hold a pen in their hands; sounds trivial, but it’s true.

10) Not making eye contact

In the business environment, eye contact is fundamental. As a manager, you’re not just compelled to hold speeches to keep an audience engaged; you deal with people every single day, and it’s your job to make them trust you. How do you do that if you can’t look them in the eye?

By Jason Phillips and!

320px-Fire_fighters_practice_with_spraying_equipment,_March_1981Trust doesn't happen by default. It takes time and effort to build trust among the employees. It is essential to engage and motivate employees. Moreover the employees will be candid regarding the environment of the office, their co-workers, challenges they face and what all can be done for lucrative results. As an owner, here's a few ways you can build the trust of your employees and become a leader they're happy to work with.

Various surveys have been conducted to understand the employee and employer relationship. And sometime, you might think is it really important to carry out such research? The answer is, YES! No employer (a small business owner or a successful entrepreneur) can work well without the support of his employees. It is the combined effort of their team that takes the business to the height of success. So, if you crave a solid groundwork for your company, it is vital to invest some time to nurture and support your workers. Let’s find out what can be done to build the required trust among the employees;

#1 Planning

It will hardly take an hour or even less to lose up the trust of your employees, but it will surely take much longer to rebuild it. Hence, planning to recover the past and creating a better present and future requires patience and anticipating the needs of your employees in advance.

#2 Communicate

Share any information that has to do with your employees work. For example, if you have some plans to shift your set up across the town, it is important that this gets into their notice as soon as possible. They can start planning accordingly. Likewise, if they're kicking butt, express gratitude. If there's improvements to be made to their work... you get the idea.

#3 Empowerment

You know your employees have an impact on your organization's future. Do they? It is your responsibility to give them access to tools and information they need to carry out their job in the bets possible way. Empowerment extends beyond merely their job duties as well. Do they feel there is a process for safely voiceing concerns and ideas?

#4 Celebrations!

The anniversaries, milestones or other major achievements need to draw attention of every employee. Appreciation is the short cut to develop the bond of trust between you and your employee. So, next time an employee achieves a huge target in minimum time, don’t forget to celebrate. Maybe it’s a simple cake party (ed note: skip the cake and buy them a beer), but it will surely let your employees know how much you care!

#5 Support Continued Education

Technology and skills need to be revisited time after time. With constant evolutions, every job today calls for regular training. And your employee’s skill needs to keep up-to-date. So, it is your responsibility to take initiative and support your employees need to freshen up their work-related skills. This will be beneficial in two ways;

  1. It will enhance the skills of your employees; making it better for your business
  2. It will make a clear picture that you worry for them, and are investing in their long term position in your company!

#6 Keep Meeting!

It will be highly appreciable if you keep meeting face-to-face often with your employees. When higher level personnel get in touch, workers feel it comfortable to discuss about their work, opportunities, goals, tasks, etc. A regular check-in with your employees provides you an opportunity to interact with them in a better way. These check ins need not be long or drawn out. Respecting their time is another way to show you value the work they do!

#7 Add them to Decision-Making

The law of ‘more you give, the more you get’ works ideally for building trust. In an organization, it becomes important to involve every level of employee in the decisions which affect their job. The process is simple and it shows your trust and respect toward your employees, which is likely to foster early!

You cannot buy loyalty. Building trust will require time, patience and consistency, just like any other relationship. Now get to it!

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