This is a guest post from Tony Anagor who has been working with me this week in IESE.
Tony has built a multi-million euro event management business in Barcelona. 3 years ago he told me that he had found his true passion. He works with individuals to clarify their purpose and give them the belief and confidence to take action to achieve their goals. Connect with Tony on LinkedIn.
Can we talk?
I have been passionate about the art of communication for many years.
My journey began 29 years ago when I witnessed one man completely mesmerize an audience of 8000 people for 12 hours a day during a 3 day personal development weekend. Today Anthony Robbins is world famous and has changed the lives of 1000s of people. But… how does he do it? Communicating with passion that’s how!
“Your body is your autobiography in motion”
Communication was never on the school curriculum when I was a child. I learnt the theories of Pythagoras. I spent a whole term musing over the law of Parabolic Motion, and as interesting as it was, I use none of that knowledge today. Today I find myself fascinated at how a person can walk into a room and with just their body language announce “ here I am” whilst others can shuffle into a room and whisper “oh there you are”.
The art of communication is often looked upon as a soft skill that attracts varying levels of importance in an academic curriculum. There is nothing soft about an orator who can whip a nation into a frenzy of emotion using a carefully written speech rich in metaphors and alliteration. Communication is a PRIMARY skill and should be given its due respect in our modern day education system. Simple things like eye contact, breathing, hand movements and a smile can give 80% of yourself away to a keen communication skills expert. As Leil Lowndes says in his book How to Talk to Anyone: “ your body is your autobiography in motion”.
We do not move the world with words alone
Consider for a moment the unassuming diminutive shuffling figure of Gandhi, how was the world so enamored by his equanimity? How did he instil his message in others with such conviction? The next time you see a clip of his speech, watch how he uses his smile and his eyes. Take a look at Ronald Reagan, we can debate his politics, but he transitioned from an actor to become president of the USA, next time take a look at his eye contact and his smile.
If we begin to notice and analyse the people around us who we admire for their communication skills, we will see that they use their bodies just ever so slightly differently to most people; we call it charm, X factor or charisma.
If I wished to become a pilot I would have to study and undergo hours and hours of practice and training. Having qualified, it would be incumbent upon me to invest time in keeping my skill level updated to a globally accepted standard.
I wonder how the world of politics and business would be today if we did that with our communications skills. Some people in positions of influence have not updated their skills since they were toddlers.
My first tip to making the step towards improving your communications skills is to buy a very simple book called Talk Language By Alan Pease. I read this book 29 years ago and I was hooked!
Visit Conor’s Improve your Speaking page here on the blog.
Connect with Tony
Tony works with individuals to clarify their purpose and give them the belief and confidence to take action to achieve their goals. Connect with Tony on LinkedIn.