Last week, I spent several days with one of my “accountability partners”. I call them my AP’s. You may call them a Mentor.
I work with one who guides me through social media. She gently guides me and gives me next steps. This works “a bit”. I am posting a bit more.
However, my “Accountability Partner” for business strategies is tough. She has pushed herself harder toward her goals than most others I know. And she pushes me to become better. Analyzing specific steps and actions that I take, having me rework and redo.
Having to be told, “Not good enough. You can do better.” is not pleasant, yet, I get better. She demands more. It’s startling and I work to meet her standards.
This is what you want in your own Accountability Partner – Someone that listens to your practice of your speaking speed, your target word lists or paragraphs, analyzes it with you and says:
“Not good enough. You can do better.”
You practice, get feedback and try again.
If you want to get better at programming, you share it with an experienced programmer and get their feedback. Then, go practice again.
However, I hear so many folks say that they cannot “find” someone to listen to them.
Have they asked, really?
The greatest word in the English language is “Help”.
Most Americans that I know in the workplace want to see their international colleagues succeed. All they want to know is how to help.
Here is how to ask someone to help you with reducing your speaking speed:
- Choose a set of three (3) different paragraphs; each at 100 to 120 words. Find paragraphs with shorter words and sentences in them. News articles are designed for this.
- Practice each of the paragraphs until you can say each in about 55 to 60 seconds. Yes – Practice! Honor the other person’s willingness to help you.
- The day before the set time – The 20 or 30 minutes that they work with you – Send them the three (3) paragraphs and tell your AP that you want to do these in 55 – 60 seconds.
- On the meeting day – be ready with your own recorder (Try the voice memo app on your phone.) Have the paragraph color-coded at the commas and periods, so you can tell where you are pausing.
- Be ready – to accept Feedback: You WANT feedback. So that you try again and again until you feel comfortable speaking slower in front of another person.
This is the goal. You want to be able to be understood in front of a listener.
Now, it’s my turn. I want to use social media more. I think it’s time to ask my Social Media AP to get tough with me. Do more practice. And, get more feedback.
And next, ….. Who is your Communication Accountability Partner that is giving you feedback? Go ask a Toastmaster, a co-worker, a teacher, someone who will be honest with you, so that you may Effectively Communicate your Brilliance.