(Join our next free Webinar, “Online Meetings: How to Connect to Their Minds, Ears, and Heart,” Thursday, May 21, 12:30 pm EDT. If you haven’t registered, to reserve your place in our series and get video recordings, click here)
You’re getting ready to lead or join an online meeting and you start wondering:
“What needs to happen for my voice to be heard?”
With most folks are being pulled in way too many directions at once these days, your challenge is to rise above the ordinary and stand out with valuable solutions. But how?
Let’s narrow down the range of problems many business people and community leaders are facing into three categories for you to consider:
- Face-to-face meetings and conferences are delayed for months, totally canceled, or being rescheduled only as virtual events.
- Businesses are closed or partially reopening with reduced staff and new ways to provide services and products to their customers.
- Parents are juggling caring for their at-home children and work responsibilities, and in many cases, with severe cuts in income. Consequences are instability in housing, employment, healthcare, and many other arenas.
What is your area of expertise and what can you contribute to a critical conversation?Regardless of which of the three challenges you can address, what you say matters even more today than in “normal” times. Here are some pointers to help you come across as sympathetic yet persuasive and knowledgeable:
Use benefit words. Try not to just recite facts to justify your position. Contrary to the old movie line, “Just the facts, ma’am,” to be heard now requires you to establish an emotional connection of some kind. You do that by incorporating relevant phrases like “save time,” “save money,” “look good,” “appear more in control,” “increase safety,” “improve compliance,” “less work,” “more convenient,” “more satisfaction,” and “greater comfort.”
Sprinkle pain words into the conversation.
If you have a true solution to a problem, it’s important to appeal to the state of mind of those in your meeting or presentation. Ask questions like: “Are you frustrated with …” “Tired of…” “Angry about …” “Annoyed with …” “Afraid of …” “Worried about …” “Concerned that…” or “Bothered by…”
Here are the three core steps:
- Think about what the people in your circles need and what you can bring to the table.
- Organize your solutions and narrow down your explanation to simple, clear elements
- Anchor your remarks with benefit or pain words, or both to create thee emotional trigger needed for the right action to take place.
It’s hard work to persuade others in any time, but especially now. Remember, however, that you are coming from a position of experience and know-how. Your words need to be heard.
Get quick insights into ramping up your virtual presence in our next free Webinar, “Online Meetings: How to Connect to Their Minds, Ears, and Heart,” Thursday, May 21, 12:30 pm EDT. Reserve your place and get the video recordings if you miss the sessions.