Until this week, I thought I was a pretty good public speaker. Everywhere I would give a talk, I’d always receive nice compliments from the crowd. But something happened this week that I would have to say is probably one of those rare life-changing events. I took a two-day course from Decker Communications called Communicating to Influence. I’d have to admit, I was skeptical going in. I had heard of Bert Decker before and hold him and his associates in highest regard. But a public speaking course…sounded like high school all over again.
My skepticism was put aside almost immediately. The two instructors, Allie Khalatbari and Domini Tarman, were amazing (thanks to both of them for a great class). From the opening moments to the closing bell, they provided great advice, insight and coaching on effective communication. The course featured more than a few chances to get up and speak on a variety of topics (some not of your own choosing). Each talk was videotaped and critiqued. If you’ve never seen yourself deliver a talk on video, try it. It’s an eye opening experience. And, with seasoned communications professionals coaching you on your good points as well your bad, it’s a very effective tool for helping improve your ability to not just communicate with your audience, but to really connect with them. Seth Godin always says that communication is about the transfer of emotion. This course helps you do just that.
So, no matter how good of a speaker you think you are, you must go out as soon as you can and take this course. Good speakers will become great, and great speakers will become phenomenal. Whether it’s eliminating bad physical habits or organizing your material, this course will make you a better communicator no question about it.