My grandfather was the first person to test my handshake and communication skills.
“No limp fish,” he would say, “Look them in the eye and tell them your name. Be strong.” But what do you say past the handshake and telling them your name?
Small talk is a big issue for those who are usually too shy or too intelligent for idle chit-chat. To quote Dr. Phil (which I can’t believe I’m doing), “How is that working for ya?”
You’ve probably seen this Carnegie Institute of Technologies quote:
“85% of your financial success is due to your personality and ability to communicate, negotiate and lead. Shockingly, only 15% is due to technical knowledge.”
The foundation website says, “These statistics were extrapolated from A Study of Engineering Education, authored by Charles Riborg Mann and published in 1918 by the Carnegie Foundation.”
Even though the stat is almost a hundred years old, I know it’s still true.
Your ability to communicate is the first step to getting people to like and trust what you have to share with this world.
I shared this key to success with students at St. Gabriel School in Hubertus, Wisconsin. I explained the importance of being able to speak in public and why joining the forensics team would serve them for the rest of their lives no matter what they become.
They also liked the story about how nervous I was never to give my first speech in 6th grade. So nervous I told my mother I couldn’t do it. She leaned in and whispered in my ear something she knew would be a quick solution, “I’ll spank you in front of everyone if you don’t get up there and do it.” I took the stage and never looked back.
I hope you do too!
To find out more about my media coaching or to plan a public-speaking class for your team, go to www.katrinacravy.com/contact
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