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Can You Hear Me Now?

Make sure you have finished speaking before your audience has finished listening! -Dorothy Sarnoff

Pitch to the Way People Listen to Get Your Message Heard

Listening is at the heart of every perfect pitch. If you're not talking so other people can hear you, you will never get your message across.

Have you ever noticed how people look when they are really listening? Leaning forward, eyes locked on the speaker, nodding or gesturing as each point is made, people who are listening are working hard and you can see it. But, what about the part of the listening process you can't see?

Your audience is processing what you are saying faster than you are speaking.

Research shows that most people talk at a rate of 135 to 150 words per minute but can listen and process information at 400 words per minute or faster with some experts saying the number could be as high as thousands of words per minute. When you add that to the fact that we retain on average only 25% of what we hear, that 75% is lost, you're looking at a communication chasm that can seriously affect the impact of your message. Nowonder sound bites have become ubiquitous in our culture!

So what's happening in the transmission gap between how fast you are speaking and how fast your audience is listening? Lots of things, many of them having nothing to do with your agenda.

What's happening as your audience listens?

Knowledge is power! The more you know about how people listen, the more impact your pitch will have.

-Mariette Edwards

Mariette Edwards is a business and career strategist. For more on how to perfect your pitch, visit her web site at ©Copyright 2004 Mariette Edwards All rights reserved