Just seven percent of what you communicate to others is interpreted through the words you speak*. The remaining 93 percent is communicated through non-verbal factors. So, that being the case, please, join me in a moment of personal panic, and ask yourself “What have I been ‘saying’ all of these years?”
To get to the bottom of the 93 percent question, we went directly to the expert in effective and authentic communication – a specialty acting coach. Anthony Vincent Bova is my colleague at Tunheim, but spends most of his time in New York City aiding two types of clients: free-spirited actors wanting to improve their onstage performance and C-suite executives wanting to be more effective in their business role.
As an authority on authenticity, he trains both types of clients the same … teaching them not to act! Guess which group ends up acting more?
“High performers in business are very bright people, and they also tend to be highly adaptable individuals,” says Bova. “After years of climbing the corporate ladder, and assuming the ‘mask’ that is required to be successful in each new role, the instincts that got you to the top can lead to a diminished return. Once leaders learn to put down the masks, their communication becomes much more authentic – and more openly received.”
So what’s the ROI on putting down the masks? If your personal communication effectiveness – communicating clearly and authentically to those around you – improves by 10, 20 or even 50 percent, how does that translate? Consider:
- Fewer meetings because you’re understood the first time
- Better working relationships because your partners feel you authentically understand their needs
- Higher productivity out of teams because they are clear on expectations
- Higher level of credibility in leadership
- Higher sales
- Higher retention in workforce, as well as shareholders
- And at home … fewer arguments over minutia!
“Communicating authentically is not enough.” says Bova. “It’s not okay to be authentically disempowered, unclear, indecisive or nervous in the majority of your communication. It’s vital to understand how to authentically change that.”
Tunheim is hosting an event with the Ellevate Network with Anthony Vincent Bova on September 15.
Join us to hear how Anthony’s approach to communicating authentically can help you in your own business communications. You’ll also have a chance to inventory your own communication effectiveness and assess what an increase in your approach would mean to your personal ROI.