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What does “Be More Engaging” mean?

Leadership Communication Skills

When people hand out feedback around "Being More Engaging", what does that generally mean? It can be confusing. It could mean:

  1. ...ask more questions or ask better questions

  2. more or talk less

  3. ...make the content more interesting or make yourself more interesting through voice and body language

  4. more commanding or look less intimidating

Ask the person who shared this how they define engaging and what exactly would they like to see change? It may surprise you.

Then, start coaching yourself. Here are a few tips and tricks that have been successful helping others be more engaging immediately. Next time you are speaking with this group again:

1. Begin with a rhetorical question to exactly matches the purpose of your meeting.

2. Balance the telling and asking 50-50.

3. Constrain the number of slides and reduce the number of words.

4. Use better gestures.

5. Speak louder than you normally do.

6. Contrast your facial expressions more with smiles and scowls, but smile more.

7. Incorporate humor. Let them see you enjoying yourself.

8. Really LOOK at your audience. Let them feel a connection with you.

Mindset shifts can really help these behaviors come out more naturally. Try believing:

1. I have great colleagues and clients. I am curious what they think.

2. I have a great idea.

3. I am on a mission to solve a serious problem.

4. We are making progress every day.

When you truly believe those things, it is easy to "be engaging".


Great leaders and speakers start with Speak by Design. Learn the techniques and build the skills with us. Speak by Design University is the only leadership communication program in the world that gives you access to self-paced learning, group coaching and training and, most importantly, private one-on-one coaching. Learn more and register.


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