Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Essentials of Movement Starting Communication Methods

I am a student of communication. I love to listen to different communicators and how they bring across their ideas and concepts... or lack of. I love to speculate who their direct or indirect mentors are or who they model their communication style after.

Here is my problem. I adore the styles of T.D Jakes, Dr. Mark Chirona, Ron Carpenter Jr., and many other Charismatics. I also adore Andy Stanley, Ed Stetzer, Mark Driscoll, Steven Furtick and many other more conservative type preachers (Baptist, Methodist, etc.) Because of this I find myself as this weird hybrid. As I listen to all these communicators, I try not to get caught up in the moment of what is being said, but how they are bringing it across. I also love (actually hate) listening to myself and evaluating it.

Here are some quick and basic tips if you are leader that is committed to starting a movement.

Couple of pre-cursors- (your life needs to be clean, you need to be committed to prayer and speak with the passion of God). With that being said, use these tips as a check off:

1) Use a Powerful Opening Statement or Story and Closing. You have two minutes to get and keep their attention. Think of it as a movie trailer or opening to a movie. Use a personal story, quote or illustration that "Grips them by the Throat." You also want to end on a powerful note. They may forget what was in the middle, but they will remember the opener and closer.
2) Preach One Message and One Theme. Most preachers call it the "anointing", secular communicators call it adrenaline. Either way, the moment cannot overtake what you prepared for and prayed about. If you are a Christian preacher, then make sure it is the anointing and not adrenaline. Everytime you speak you will face the nervousness of fear and the pumping of adrenaline. You will be able to think about 3 times as fast as you can speak. If you are person of prayer, what did God say to you in the preparation time?
3) Powerful Questions and Purposeful Props. This generation wants to leave with questions that stay with them all week, not answers that satisfy for a moment. They also need "handles." Use a prop, video or something creative everytime you speak. (make sure it reflects the one point you want to get across).
4) History Matters. Never assume that people know the concepts or the history you are speaking about. Especially when teaching ancient history or the Bible, make sure you give context and background of what is happening around. Who wrote the book? When? Why? What is this passage a bigger picture of? This also makes it more real to skeptics.
5) Pull-Don't Push. I hear a lot of communicators say, "You need to get this...You ought....You Should...We Must..." 30 minutes of this will drain even the most committed people.
6) Tone and Tempo. Go against your grain. If you are one humdred miles per hour, then practice slowing down. If you are slow, work on tempo and tone. Also, don't try to inflect your voice like your favorite speaker. I hear southern boys trying to sound like Ron Carpenter Jr. or Jensen Franklin, while the other guys have this "McManus/Stanley" inflection.
7) Humor. Humor. Humor. Use funny stories about your own life. Be humorous, just don't be a joke. The way to the heart of Americans is through their laughes.
8) Avoid Insincere Phrases. Hallelujah, How Many of You Know, Uhms, Praise God, God Almighty, Listen-Listen-Listen..... These are all phrases I hear. They are nothing more than insincere repititious fillers to most speakers. I heard one guy say, "How Many of You Know?" about 60 times during one message. I heard one person say, "God Almighty," about 15 times.
9) Never Take Shots. Don't take cheap shots at people when you are speaking. You know if you are doing it. Don't....

I hope this helps some of you. At The Well, we value Spirit-empowered communication, creativity and the ability stay with our theme of our series....and be respectful of time limits. No one loves to hear you as much as you love talking...Don't forget that.

These basic tips will be a great help to you as you are communicating. Print this out and use it as a check list when communicating.

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