7 Levels of Speaker Awareness

Before setting off on your journey to become a great public speaker and learning some essential skills, check out these 7 Levels of Speaker Awareness and consider how they impact on your development. Not to be read as a 'how to guide', rather as an 'unfolding picture of awareness' that help you to become a more effective communicator.


1. Darkness

At this level you think communication is for natural speakers only and you don't have the courage to grow. The prominent emotion is fear and the prominent behaviour is avoidance.

This isn't a level you want to hang around too long.


2. Words

At this level you are preoccupied with words and what you’re going to say. Often the words are either pulled out by inspiration or pushed out by desperation - either way they begin flowing. You become aware of the power of words and are curious about their potential.

However, a good presentation is much more than just clever words - there is another level....


3. Voice

It’s not just what you say, it’s how you say it. This level requires practice so you don’t sound strange or get into over acting and sounding unnatural. You’ll begin to think about the sounds and spaces getting exited about the impact of how you words sound. The awareness of how you sound can give confidence or doubt - both of which require close attention.

At the top of this level, your delivery will sound personal, inspirational and conversational.


4. Body

Now you're moving beyond what you’re saying and onto how you're saying it. You are looking closer at what you’re doing with your body while you’re delivering your message. People may like the sound of what you’re saying but you become aware that if something just doesn’t look right you're not going to have the impact you wanted.

At this level there is a congruence between your voice, words and body language.


5. Entertainment

At this level you are asking yourself if people are enjoying themselves? Sounding competent is not enough if your intent is to make a lasting impact. You are aware of the possibilities and opportunities to make your message stick.

This level is all about the audience experience and giving more time to this level will result in delivering a more memorable message.


6. Influence

Do people buy into you and what you are saying? Do people act upon what you said? If the answer is no then you've got lots of work to do. Revisiting the previous 5 levels will help whilst ensuring you've been authentic and have a good grip on your subject. The revelation that your goal is to bring change and not just deliver a nice keynote is so impacting that you recalibrate and reshape your message to ensure it influences change.

At this level you influence others when you speak.


7. Mastery

At this final level of speaker awareness you have confidence in yourself, your ability as a communicator and what you are saying. You resist the temptation of pride, appreciate the work involved and see public speaking as an art to craft not simply as talk to deliver.

At this level you are continually feeding back, learning and coaching others.


Which level do you find most exciting or most challenging? Share below....