Useful talk is about traction, gearing low to go the distance.
The real words, the guts of the story, will give the best traction.
Less is more.
Remove the need to convince others, through repetition of point, that only leads to grinding gears. In a gearbox, it is the small gears that get the most traction; less gives more. The same goes for effective traction from communication.
Grinding gears, sand, or a spanner in the works, friction, noise, equals a connection that is not clean and clear. The same goes for communication. Too much information and clutter leads to less traction, less recall, and beign forgotten or misunderstood.
Gears are simply amazing things. If you have an engineering bent at all, you’ll know what I mean.
If you’re not the engineering type, let me share something with you. Neither am I. When I was younger and repairing my own cars, I always had a pile of bolts left over at the end of a repair job. The car would still go, more or less. Skinned knuckles, nuts and bolts that wouldn’t budge had me view metal as very unforgiving.
But I do get the magic of gears. Maybe the idea came from nature. The use of gears, in everything from the plastic cogs in our computer’s mouse, to the massive gears in huge power stations that produce our electricity. Gears run the world.
One of the most clever things about gears is how they shift power, and use torque to do that. So that to me is a great metaphor for communication.
How do we gear it right to get power in our speaking?
And like the most effective gears, the more connection the better the gearing, the less friction, the more power.
Connection, power, reduced friction (tension) all add up to effective communication.
Well how in practical terms do we do that.
Just to push the gear idea a little further, the most common gears are spur gears, the little spurs on a cog is what engages with another cog or gear.
We need to identify our spurs, the high points in our communication.
It is so often our temptation to try and cram everything into a communication piece. The thigh bone connected to the knee bone. No one needs a comprehensive anatomy lesson. They need the guts of the story. Technology today lets people drill down themselves if they need details. You offer that opportunity, but you are focussing on the spurs. The high points that will engage.
We need to realise that we do know what the spurs and the high points are. Although overwhelmed with detail and information, more often than not, we do instinctively know how to navigate it. We just need to build that communications navigation muscle.
The answer to doing this lies in speaking and in conversation. Create an environment where you can wax lyrical, and record it. The informal asides are often the rich gems you need to get your message across. The throw away line, the explanation to a child, a neighbour, a parent.
There are 7 Key Steps Gain Torque from Your Talk.
Be Authentic, use language and ideas you are familiar with and care about.
Practice Speaking From a Blank Page. No notes. Record this.
Make Connections with Daily Life.
Use metaphors from nature.
Be Moved. Inject moments of your experience where you were present to something special that moved you.
Talk Transformation. Make Your speaking be a journey of contrasts.
Embrace Drama and Appeal to all senses; visual, aural, touch, taste and smell.
Great talk equals great talk.
Gear up how you speak and communicate. Treasure and revere the spoken word, give it power, energy, and love. The results will speak for themselves.