Assessing my own communication skills…six years ago!

Browsing my storehouse of memory I came across this priceless audiovisual piece . This is me in a communication skills workshop in 2008. It was organized by the company I was working in at that time (Proxectos Consultoría e Formación SL). Participants had to prepare a brief presentation of whatever topic. Subsequently, we were evaluated by an expert in this field and given a feedback. I am not sure where this feedback is now, but I remember many of the things I was told. Furthermore, after six years I can see other mistakes. I think I have corrected many of them nowadays, but it’s really enriching observing oneself after so many year.

Communication strengths:

  1. Attractive opening. I start saying what’s the aim of my presentation. I also formulate a question to attract my audience attention: “do you participate politically?”
  2. Consistent structure. I first explain the structure of my presentation so that everybody can expect what the exposition is about.
  3. Documentation. I was well documented and answered consistently the question raised at the end by the audience.
  4. Thought provoking ending. I raised a final question to encourage participation: “are you gladiator, spectator or apatetic?”

Communication weaknesses:

  1. Nervousness. My gestures are sometimes very abrupt. The worst, when I turned around to a paper that was on the table.
  2. Restlessness. I am taking steps in all directions. I should remain in a particular place. Sometimes it seems that I want to walk away.
  3. Lack of rhythm. I see many strong variations in my intonation and impetus. It’s as if I were very self-confident in certain moments and in others I tend to pull back.
  4. Turn my back to the audience. Not always, but I turned my back to the audience in moments where I was saying key things. It may affect the general understanding of my exposition.

External threats to communication:

Lack of space and maximalism. I can see a lack of space for the person who needs to talk. Especially if one has to write on the board. It’s like being trapped between the wall, the table and the paperboard. Don’t know why I didn’t end up stumbling.

Contingencies. Unexpected failure, as when the highlighter didn’t work.

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