Saturday, December 17, 2011


1.What people see—connecting visually

Sonya Hamlin in How to Talk So People Listen advises that between hearing and sight, sight is the more important and powerful sense when it comes to communication. She wrote, “As a species, we remember 85 to 90 percent of what we see but less than 15 percent of what we hear. That means that if you want me to learn and remember, you must also support your words by showing your ideas to me…. You now need to use the power of the visual to help sustain your audience’s interest and bring it to new levels of understanding.” She backs this up with the following evidence indicating how people today are more visual than ever:

77 percent of all Americans get about 90 percent of their news from television.

47 percent get all their news from television.

Major U.S. corporations have their own television studios.

Video and Web conferencing are replacing on-site face-to-face sales meetings.

Digital video recording systems are becoming commonplace in homes and offices.

Children now log about twenty-two thousand hours watching television by age nineteen, more than twice the time spent in school.

2.What people understand—connecting intellectually
“If you don’t live it, it won’t come out of your horn.” (Charlie Parker, Musician)

There’s no substitute for personal experience when we want to connect with people’s hearts.

When you find yourself, you find your audience.

3.What people feel—connecting emotionally

John Kotter, an author and a friend, recently wrote a book titled A Sense of Urgency. In it he states, “For centuries we have heard the expression, ‘Great leaders win over the hearts and minds of others,’” Note that he didn’t say that great leaders win over the minds of others. Nor did he say they win over others’ minds and hearts. The heart comes first.

4.What people hear—connecting verbally
Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli said, “The wisdom of the wise and the experiences of the ages may be preserved by quotations.”

What we say and how we say things make quite an impact. People respond to the language we use.

As Mark Twain observed, “The difference between the almost right word and the right word is really a large matter—it’s the difference between the lightning bug and the lightning."

From "Everyone Communicates Few Connect" by John C. Maxwell