Video: How to speak so that people want to listen

19 May Video: How to speak so that people want to listen

What do you do if you talk to someone but sense they are not truly listening to you? We have all had conversations where the other person’s attention seems elsewhere. It can lead you to feel hurt or even offended. Rather than blame your listener, however, what if you have the power to make them more attentive?

In this great talk, Julian Treasure draws upon his experience as a sound expert to show us how to converse in a more engaging, interesting way. He identifies “seven deadly sins” of speaking (not an exhaustive list) which he recommends steering clear from to achieve this goal. Each one is highly relevant, and some are provocative.

“Sin 1”, for instance, advises against gossip – something which we all do at least once in a while. Treasure points out the uncomfortable reality that, the person we are gossiping to, will likely be gossiping about us five minutes later to someone else. Another Sin worth mentioning is number 3, negativity. This includes complaining, which British people are often great at doing!

Yet Treasure not only outlines a useful list of pitfalls to avoid when speaking. He also offers a more positive way to carry a conversation so that people want to listen, compacted into a short 4-point acronym which is easy to remember. This list is great to help you learn what to say, but Treasure then concludes with some great tips on how to say it.

This is where his background as a sound expert becomes clear. For instance, Treasure shows how “locating” your voice is very important when seeking listeners’ attention (i.e. speaking from the nose as opposed to from the chest). Many of these tips are quick to recognise and adopt into your own speaking style, making this talk very applicable.

Consider giving it ten minutes of your time!