Have you ever been constantly interrupted whilst trying to convey your message? It’s terribly frustrating! In today’s corporate culture it can be a real struggle to get our words in, which is why in this blog I’d like to share with you a technique I use and teach for successfully getting your voice heard, no matter the situation. It’s called the Baton Technique, so let’s dive in!
You might wonder, “why the name”? Simple! Think of a relay race and how the runners expertly pass the baton between one another while maintaining their full momentum. The relay is our conversation and each communicator is a runner on the same team. The baton? That is simply who’s currently speaking. And that’s all there is to it! But, how is this helpful?
Well, tell me this… If you’re in a relay, awaiting the baton, do you just stand there until it’s delivered straight to your hand, or start running to match the pace of your compatriot? Precisely! And in a conversation, it should be no different. The first step is to ramp up your air flow until you can seize the baton! Whether that’s enthusiastic vocal acknowledgements, such as “yes,” “I see,” “that’s fascinating,” and all the rest, or perhaps repeating the name of the person to whom you are speaking. Whatever you can do that will allow you to start getting your air flowing so you can catch the right moment. So, how do you know when it’s the right moment?
Let me tell you, if there’s one thing I recommend you practice most when it comes to my Baton Technique, it’s timing! At a moment’s notice you need to be able to take-off without a stammer or a slur! How do you do this? When your counterpart stops to take a breath. Yes, that small fraction of a second is your precious window to grab the baton and take control! Now you have it, what do you do?
Run! The last thing you want to do is catch the right moment, only to slam, stammer and fall upon an array of “ums” and “ahs” while you concoct a butchered thought. No! You need to gallop with full intensity, be confident, and navigate towards the points that are meaningful to you as succinctly and with as constant an airflow as you can muster, so as not to be disrupted once more.
It’s quite the novel little technique I’ve created, but do not underestimate it! I believe it could very well be the key for you to excel in your communications and finally have your voice heard. Happy practicing!
If you’d like to pursue more tools, tips or techniques to improve your presence and influence throughout your career, then do yourself the favour and explore the rest of what I have to offer here on my website, with the courses I create, or through my social media channels!