convey to compel – series intro

The pen is mightier than the sword…

…because steel swung moves a soldier, while words uttered can move nations. Your audience is your own little nation, and this series explores the fundamental principles of how to utter words so your thoughts sink into their minds.

No matter the weapon.

It could be your pen, keyboard, your voice in a video or on stage, or even your salespeople talking to prospects. It doesn’t matter. Any of these word wielding tools can compel your audience when you apply the fundamentals of verbal communication.

The funny thing is that many of these principles have a lot in common with those of visual design. Both are based on how people process data. Both have a similar bandwidth for taking in the data (the eyes & ears). Both use the same organ to process the data: the brain. It’s how the human brain has evolved to think, which has given rise to these principles.

However just like with our design fundamentals series, there is an important distinction to be made here. Using these communication principles will not guarantee compelling communication. That also depends on the essence of what you’re actually saying to people. If your subject matter is boring, or if you’re saying it to the wrong people, then these principles will only get you so far. Sure, they may help people pay more attention, but once they realize they don’t really care about the actual topic, it’s over.

So, to clarify: this series will not show you what to say to people to compel them. It will show you how to say it.

We’ll be covering 8 principles:

  1. thought distribution
  2. active voice
  3. silence
  4. visual silence
  5. word choice
  6. jargon
  7. the senses
  8. verbal priming

We may add more to the series. For now, getting a firm grasp on these will do wonders for your ability to communicate. Ready to go?