Make People Listen

In this TED video, Julian Treasure discusses many of the nuances of speaking. Speaking is a valuable tool for the establishment of interpersonal relationships. As with any other social function, it comes with a set of do’s and don’ts. Julian Treasure mentions the seven deadly sins of speaking that muddy or convolute your message. In simple terms things that make people stop listening to you.

These verbal communicative infringements are:

  • Gossip
  • Judging
  • Negativity
  • Complaining
  • Excuses
  • Lying
  • Dogmatism

This is especially significant in the business world and workplace. The last thing you want is to lose the listeners’ interest and ultimately not get your point across. Mr. Treasure mentions the easy acronym H.A.I.L., which breaks down to Honesty, Authenticity, Integrity and Love to help you effectively communicate and disseminate your ideas effectively.


You should always attempt to communicate in a true, straight forward and clear way.


Simply: just be yourself. You cannot be an effective speaker if you are simultaneously trying to uphold a role. Unless you’re an actor, if you’re an actor then go nuts.


During communication you will inherently, make assurances. Just like when two Kleenexes come out of a new box once it’s out there you can’t put it back. You need to uphold those items or ideas, otherwise your just going to sound like a politician.


Here Mr. Treasure isn’t talking about cartoon hearts floating over your head type love, but love of fellow human beings and the things that intrinsically result from it. Love can be paralleled with notions of respect, empathy and sympathy.

Finally Mr. Treasure notes certain voice ‘tricks’ for effective speaking. You can lower the tone of your voice which is associated with power and authority. Timbre is the voices richness, Morgan Freeman style. Prosody is voice modulation, the difference between talking like a robot and fluttering around like Nicolas Cage. Pace is pretty self-explanatory just slow it down to be a more effective communicator. Pitch is the note of your voice used to convey enthusiasm or excitement and finally volume, lowering your voice to almost a whisper can make people intently listen to you.

Did you find this video interesting, engaging and constructive? Do you have any little tricks that you implement when you are verbally communicating? Then let us know in the comment section below.

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