Do you want to impress?

You need to want to impress your audience.

I have a Dale Carnegie book at home.

It’s called ‘The quick and easy way to effective speaking’ and there’s one thing I love about it.

It doesn’t start with technical tips but with one strong message: be confident. Walk out and impress your audience. That is the secret: you need to want to impress and that holds true whether you write a speech or a text that is meant to be read. 

I don’t mean impressive in the dramatic sense. High-flying words and sophisticated expressions don’t make good writing. Feelings do. A text resonates when it resonates with you, when you give it your heart.

That is not a question of talent but of attitude.

And of time.

Take your time

Nobody can write good stuff in between two doors. It takes a moment to get into the right frame of mind, to become clear about what you want to say, to find the right words, to arrange them and to re-arrange them.

If you have little time, keep it short. Two sentences that resonate are more valuable than a page that doesn’t.

Less is more.

In fact, every paragraph that doesn’t impress is dangerous.

Not because people can’t remember what was said. That makes it unnecessary. What makes it dangerous is that we have no incentive to keep following.  It’s an invitation to switch off and that’s what most people do.

Don’t underestimate the destructive power of uninspiredness. Take your time and impress.

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8 thoughts on “Do you want to impress?

  1. “Don’t underestimate the negative power of uninspired text.”

    This is so true. But how to communicate or convey a message we have no feelings about? Can we impress without being really concerned?

    1. This had me thinking Matthias. Of course it’s difficult to impress when you feel no interest. But I think many communicators are not so much bored by the subject than by the prevalent communication culture of their organisation, like the culture of the boring press release or the culture of corporate lingo.

      Communicators should work to change the habits of boring communication – make the format more exciting, look for new perspectives. I think there’s a chance to make every subject a bit more exciting (also for yourself) if you present it right. What do you think?

  2. Dale Carnegie begun his curses about the same time then Ralph Smedley, the Toastmasters founder, a hundred years ago. What they told and thought was based on ancient wisdom, only they told and wrote it so modern men – later only women – could understand and use. I still use advices from both. I have books from both home.

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