When the audience is surprised by a question they will sit there and wait for some other brave soul to possibly embarrass herself by speaking up first. At which point you will be able to hear the group exhale, 'I'm off the hook, I don't need to answer.'
BUT YOU CAN HELP THEM.
Making Speaking Magical is all about focus.
If you don’t know what you’re focused on as a communicator then your audience doesn’t stand a chance remembering what you said. You need one idea to get across, not 7, not 3, just 1. If you don’t have your one focused idea there is no amount of Magical Tricks that will help your audience be transformed by your message.
Connecting them is all about building up your credibility with the audience.
This trick, like Captivate Them and Teach Them, is rooted in the great work of Aristotle. He clarified the best ways for a speaker to persuade their audience of anything is to include Pathos (emotion), Logos (logic), and a strong dose of Ethos (credibility). You don’t get to control this one, it is completely on the audience to determine whether the communicator is trustworthy and credible.
The brain loves visuals.
Since our goal is to transform our audience, we have to be able to get an idea to stick in their mind - to go from short-term memory into long-term memory and hopefully change the way they live. I believe it is up to you, the communicator, to help this one talk stand out in their memory from all the rest.
Pictures help ideas stand out.
Time after time the people would come up to Jesus and ask him a question only to have him ponder it, then throw the responsibility back on them to answer.
Jesus seemed to find joy and purpose in asking questions so the people could express what they already understood about their lives.
Are you able to do the same with your audience?
Surprising them is all about creating a extra-ordinary moment together
We never forget the moments that surprised us most. These were out of the ordinary so our brains took a snapshot to remember it. The moment captured in a single frame. It might just be one specific picture you have, but that picture helps you retrieve the rest of the moment at will.
Now, what if it was possible to harness that power as a communicator? How can you intentionally capture your audience’s attention for a single moment causing a significant memory to stick?
Involving them is all about inviting your audience into the process of discovery.
Our brains can retain information when delivered audibly, but the amount of that retention skyrockets when the brain has had to participate in some way to understand the information. When this happens our brains create new connections & pathways to make sense of what it has experienced; the brain can literally be transformed by good communication.
Good communication means telling a good story. Stories engage the mind, creating incredible activity as the brain attempts to build the scenario in our imagination; but more than that, stories engage the heart and soul.
Captivating them is all about emotions. If you can get your audience to feel something, you're creating something magical.
As a speaker, you can use memory to your advantage: you can help the audience recall an emotional experience (which we will discuss in the next post, Captivate Them), or more importantly, you can communicate with the intention to create a new memory for them. Consider the weight of that - you have the opportunity to plant an idea in their mind that was not present before you came along.