While we all desire to be better communicators, our real secret weapon is our power be more credible. That is truly the key to becoming more easily understood and impactful. Developing your personal credibility will help you connect more powerfully with your listeners. There isn’t magic to being more credible; it just takes understanding what goes in to making it happen. Consider these 5 tips which can enable you to become a a more credible, and therefore effective, communicator.
1) Relatability – Simply put, relatability=likability. Being someone, your listeners can connect with helps them resonate with your message. Revealing something about your life that connects with the universalities of humanity creates a powerful relationship that makes for believable, sustainable and relatable communication.
2) Enthusiasm – A big part of communicating effectively is your personal passion and conviction for your topic. Enthusiasm and fervor are contagious and persuasive. It’s important to remember that you are promoting your message to an audience that in all likelihood wants to believe what you have to say. Make it easy for them.
3) Respect – Demonstrating respect for your audience and understanding their opinions can strengthen your message. That does not necessarily mean you acquiesce to the emotions or conclusions of your audience when they are in conflict with yours. Rather, by acknowledging the differences while demonstrating an understanding and appreciation for their perspectives reinforces your credibility by demonstrating you listen and respect others’ views.
4) Storytelling – People reason through stories and have since time immemorial. Your ability to tell a convincing and captivating story that encompasses the essence of your message is at the heart of credible and lasting communication. Data and evidence are foundational to a persuasive message, but cold facts and raw data are rarely compelling. The ability to transform statistical findings and observations into a humanized story will make your communication resonate and your conclusions stick. When the story is personal and relatable with your listeners your credibility climbs even higher.
5) Context – Framing your message with the context in which it will be heard provides you with enormous credibility. No message delivered in a vacuum can survive beyond the moment it was received. True and lasting communication is based on the understanding of three components of context. Physical context acknowledges where and how the message lands, including your appearance. Cultural context speaks to the lens, or filter, through which your communication will be heard. Situational context demonstrates your understanding of the moment and how your audience will process what they hear based on current conditions.
Being a great communicator requires a thoughtful approach to your personal credibility. Arming yourself with these five pillars of credible messaging will allow you to be more believable and therefore a fundamentally more effective communicator.