I was recently looking at a brochure for a retail business I visited. On the inside of the brochure, it read “Our Values.” And the values were listed below:
As I read through the values (please note: that word will be overused in the first half of this post), I started to get a familiar feeling.
“Value: Our products, service and pricing provide value to our consumer and are delivered with satisfaction and pride.”
The feeling was boredom. Big snore.
I could go on and share more of the values, but why? They would only put you to sleep. And they wouldn’t tell you one single thing that would persuade you to shop in this store. Which is unfortunate, because the generic tone of the brochure is completely the opposite of the warm, welcoming, friendly tone of the business canadian phamacy and its employees.
As a speaker, you could choose the generic route, using the same old clichés and platitudes that every other speaker uses. (See my Facebook conversation regarding “juicy” and “yummy” and my blog posts on clichés.)
Or, you could really dig deep into your content and think about the words you’re using in your presentations and what they really mean to your audiences. There’s more than one way to say just about everything, and when you figure out how to express yourself in a unique and fresh way, your audience will sit up and listen.
Are you using industry jargon? Throw it out. Business buzzwords? Toss ‘em. Trite phrases, hokey quotes and well-trampled stories? Burn those suckers.
Now start fresh. How can you express yourself in your own words, in your own special way, in your voice, in your language?
That’s what your audience wants from you: to know you, relate to you and trust you. They can’t know, relate to or trust you if you are a cipher who makes no impact, has no originality, and blends into the rest of the speakers on the stage.
Earlier, I suggested you “think about” the words you’re using. Now I want you to sit down, look at your content (maybe it’s a presentation; maybe it’s sales copy) and actively find new ways to say what you’ve been saying in the same old way. Write them down. Use them.
I guarantee it will give your presentations a new luster and meaningfulness. You will feel like a whole new person. That is, the real you.