Tag Archives: Speaking with confidence

On the Soapbox

If Speaking in Public causes you stress…

You’re not alone. More than half the population seem to be terrified at the very thought of being asked to present or speak in public. In fact, many have said they would rather ‘die’ !! Yes, figure that one out for common sense…. You may be surprised to know many of the world’s greatest speeches have been made by introverts, people who choose to Janie Lazar - Coderdojothon 2016manage their stress and present with excitement rather than fear. The good news is you can learn to do the same and begin to enjoy speaking and presenting, both with ease and confidence. Boosting your communication skills and public speaking really can be something to look forward to as you develop your skills to present effectively and connect with real confidence.  

In fact, for Non Native English Speaking Professionals,  spend 5th November 2016 with us for an intensive workshop and you’ll be well on the way to mastering those nerves. You’ll learn essential skills you can use in any language.

Click to contact me directly for One to One Coaching 1-2-1 


the Chinese word ‘wei-chi’ has two meanings: ‘danger’ and ‘opportunity’.  It all depends on how you see it.  So when you change your perspective and see speaking in public as an opportunity, we can work to turn that fear into excitement.


English not your first language?

Make no mistake, the reality of the workplace today is that international employees are expected to be able to contribute effectively to their teams and within the organisation FAST. Usually within a very short time of starting in their new job or if they have been there a while and have been promoted, of taking up a new role.  Their company expects them to be able to communicate competently and confidently with colleagues and clients.

Employees who do are in many cases quickly recognised, rewarded and often promoted.  Those who simply keep their heads down and work hard are often overlooked, their abilities under-estimated and their contribution under-valued and their potential also overlooked.

The very fact that they are employed in many instances because of their native language abilities and may be talking for most of the day in their own language, or languages other than English sometimes, just sometimes is easily forgotten.

And yet, English is the most used language of international business and frequently the common language amongst a multi-cultural workforce.

What’s my point here?

The point is that no matter how well you may understand English, be able to work in English, the more confident a communicator you are, the more you will gain out of your life professionally and personally.

The more proficient you become, the sooner you can integrate more fully, engage with your colleagues and within your community and contribute more effectively.

This makes for a happier and satisfying life for you too, as well as for your company and the company’s customers too. For business owners, the same applies : happier clients and happier staff.

Effective communicators save time and confident communicators connect more easily, whether it is on a one to one basis or many.

Why is this so important?

Clear communication means more effective collaboration.  Better collaboration means things get done faster, usually better with less mistakes or misunderstandings. Which means the bottom line for a company, their profit margins are higher !!

But it’s not as easy as it sounds, is it?  When you’re a non-native English speaker just finding your feet in a new country, in a new environment, everything can be difficult and extremely challenging. We know this and it is why I began to think how to help and with Andrea Goldman, we’ve developed the Much More Than Words integrated approach to language learning which also tackles the issue of confident communication in the workplace. What it does for professionals is to:

  • Improve your command of English, to help you know how to use the language appropriately and effectively.
  • To understand how to communicate your message, spoken or written in the way in which it can produce the best outcome.
  • And develop your own personal style, which we call your own ‘conversational style’, so that you can talk naturally, feel comfortable and present with confidence.

    If you’re in HR, I’d love to have your feedback

There is a full Professional Development Program available and it starts with the Essential Core of Communication.  No matter how much technology advances… we all love to talk and be heard..  Feedback and all views welcome 🙂

learn by looking … closely

Want to really Speak with Confidence?

One way to quickly improve your speaking skills is by listening and watching yourself and others.  Go on to U-tube and you’ll find some amazing tutorials.  You’ll find people who are at the top of their game and their advice is invaluable.  Go one step better and start videoing yourself, learn to let your personal, conversational style of presenting, of talking to camera develop.  Only by seeing yourself on camera will you really understanding how to improve.  Share the videos with an honest colleague or friend, learn to take advice from others and watch yourself improve.  If you’re serious about developing your personal Conversational Style, then click read more and to check out our workshops.  If the notion of developing your public speaking and leadership skills on a regular basis appeals to you, then consider organisations like Toastmasters where you can learn in a supportive environment.  Contrary to popular belief, Toastmasters gives you far more than public speaking skills.  Visit a local club or two and see for yourself. 


Developing your own Conversational Style

Going weak at the knees….

Fear dominated my early life. As a child, I was terrified. Terrified of lots of things.  Some silly.  Some not so stupid.  One very real fear was of being asked to say a prayer at a seder supper as I  unlike my cousins, I didn’t speak hebrew. In school, I knew I wasn’t the brightest and avoided any possibility of being picked out for anything at all and so the habit of being fearful continued through most of my adult life of choosing to play second fiddle, never wanting to be in the spotlight.  I felt I wasn’t intelligent enough, certainly not funny enough and I believed that no-one would find what I had to say of interest anyway.  The very notion of  exposing myself to possible ridicule filled me with horror on a regular basis. Fear you’ll have gathered is something I really understand.

If the thought of speaking in public terrifies you and your knees turn jelly, it is in your power to change how you feel. There are some easily learnt techniques that can help you speak in public, with confidence and take the stress out of those business situations where you know you’ve simply got to deliver.  Developing your own style is one of the most important steps to presenting well and to think of your style as a type of conversation can help.  Once you’ve done so, then it’s a case of modifying your CONVERSATIONAL STYLE to suit the situation.  Easier said than done, right?  Take the first step and think of how you talk to different members of your family.  Talking with a brother or sister, for example, will probably be more informal than perhaps talking to an Aunt or Uncle.  In business, it’s much the same.  There will be people with whom you adopt a less familiar or formal tone.  We’re all human and the more you can learn to relax and communicate with ease, the greater, more varied and most important of all, the more personalised your ‘conversational style’ will become. Wobbly knees will be a distant memory and all you’ll feel is the excitement and pleasure of speaking with confidence.

janie-says Confident Communicators have the ability to Inspire and Motivate

‘Darling, nobody knows’

Put on the Spot !

When I was out the other night, I was asked to comment on a particular situation.  Afterwards, I was complimented on how calm I seemed, especially as this was a topic that I was unfamiliar with and held little interest for me!  My first instinct was not to comment, make an excuse and quickly avoid the issue altogether.  Whenever I find myself in such situations, I remember the words of a very confident friend who helped me greatly in my early years and can still hear her voice today. When I said how nervous I felt if asked my opinion,  that my knees would shake and my mouth would go dry, she replied in her deep, husky voice  ‘but darling, darling, nobody knows.  Nobody but you can ever know how very fearful you are’.  Having a background in opera and drama, she knew only too well how fear can take over and would prime herself every single time she went on stage.  Now I’m not proposing you put on an award winning performance every time you get an attack of nerves.  What I am saying is that PRACTICE MAKES BETTER ! The more you associate speaking well with a good feeling, the better it gets and you can fool your sub-conscious mind into helping you achieve a greater level of satisfaction and success each and every time you speak.  Give the illusion of ‘Nerves of Steel’ and relegate ‘Legs like Jelly’ to history with a few easily learned techniques from a ‘Self Smarter’ workshop.

janie-saysYou need the adrenalin of nerves to keep you on top of your performance.  When feeling anxious,   remember the words of my friend….. ‘Darling, darling, nobody knows. Just take a deep breath and go for it !