The Communicator's Mindset

Before you hit the stage, develop the mindset of a communicator, and watch your effectiveness soar.

We need to establish the mindset of who we are as communicators, before we work on how we communicate. In future episodes we'll look at the technical aspects of speaking like a pro, but for now, let's look at what it takes to make the person behind the podium.

Featuring international speaker Rob Salisbury

As an international key-note speaker, Certified Speaking Professional, sales trainer and event MC, Rob Salisbury has been involved with over 600 clients and over 2,100 organisational events. He is also an accomplished author, mentor and trusted advisor focused on optimising the communication culture within companies around the world. 


Nathan Shooter with Rob Salisbury CSP in Singapore, attending the Asia Professional Speakers Singapore Convention 2017.

Episode Highlights

Your worldview:

  • Be curious.

  • Travel broadly and experience different cultures.

  • Seek to understand the major areas of life; relationships, business, education, spirituality, politics etc.

  • Begin to work out the vision for your life.

  • New experiences are where new ideas are born.

  • You have a valuable contribution to make to the world.

Your priorities:

  • A major key to effective communication is to set your ego aside.

  • Communication is a 2-way street.

  • Step beyond insecurity and bring value to others when you speak.

  • Everyone has an opportunity to communicate, look for them around you.

  • Be a person who is always trainable and teachable.

  • Communication relies on everyone in your environment being ‘on the same plan’.

Your motivations:

  • Extract your ’why’ by discovering what drives you most.

  • Look at Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, develop empathy for what motivates others.

  • When you communicate, what outcomes are you looking for?

  • Are you improving people’s lives when you share your ideas?

  • Are you clear on what your ‘message’ truly is?

  • There are many communication mediums/channels, choose the ones that match your motivation.

Your mind:

  • Search for role models and mentors that are good examples of effective communicators.

  • You can find ‘virtual mentors’ on TED, YouTube etc.

  • Start small, offer to do a short speech at an event you otherwise wouldn’t have.

  • Fantastic communicators aren’t always the professional speakers, they’re the ones that know their message inside out.

  • Visualise the audience and put them first. Put your fears in second place.

  • Watch/read/listen to biographical stories about great communicators (eg: The King’s Speech).

Your ideas:

  • Develop a mindset that actively seeks inspiration in everyday-life.

  • Use your digital notepad and camera to capture ideas.

  • Create an archive of visual prompts from which you can develop ideas.

  • Collect anecdotes as they arise, for use in future presentations.

  • Expose yourself to other people's views, even if they differ from your own ideology.

Your preparation:

  • Consider how audience size affects your preparation, eg: small (birthday parties), medium (board meetings), large (conferences).

  • Keep PowerPoint slides simple.

  • Arrive at the engagement early.

  • Be aware of the cultural context (when overseas, speak slower where appropriate).

  • Will you be using notes in your hand or on screen?

  • Know how much time you have, plan your content accordingly.

Your body:

  • Relax.

  • The night before, go to bed early and avoid caffeine.

  • Slow your breathing down.

  • Do exercises that warm your muscles.

  • Invest in vocal training.

Your environment:

  • Would a podium be a help or hinderance?

  • Look audience members in the eye (individually if possible).

  • What distractions are there? (Background, live music etc.)

  • Is the event indoors or outdoors? How will that affect your audience's receptiveness?

  • Prior to the event, talk with PA crew (about microphones, screens, stage etc.)

  • Know the layout of the room.

Your delivery:

  • Don’t get stuck looking in one spot.

  • The audience is giving your their time, treat it as a value commodity.

  • Find different ways to acknowledge people in the room.

  • Consider how empathy can create a sense of belonging.

  • **Find more specifics on this in a future episode**


FREE eBook Download 

The eBook Motivating your Mind, Inspiring your Spirit 2017 by Rob Salisbury and 80 contributing authors from around the world, is yours to download FREE! Simply fill out the form below, and click the link that appears afterward.

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