This week we were asked to think about someone who demonstrates competent communication within a particular context. In communicating, sometimes it is not what you say but how you say it.
The person that I chose to do is Dr. Maya Angelou.
Dr. Maya Angelou was a poet, a speaker, an actress, essayist, and writer. I have always admired her and all her works even in her acting career. Though she is no longer with us, in my heart I still view her as one of the finest competent communicators. In listening to and watching some of Dr. Angelou speeches and the readings of her poems, one can feel the words that she is saying because of the way that she is speaking. In interviews that she has with others, she makes eye contact at all times, she listens while the interviewer is talking, and at times she nods her head in agreement to what the other person was saying. Not only does she use verbal communication but she also uses non verbal gestures. Throughout many of her speeches she uses her hands to express what she is feeling and to get her point across to the audience. You can feel how passionate and humble she is just from the grace and manner in her speaking and the way that she talks to others.
When in speaking she connected with people by opening up with a song to get their attention or focus to realize what she was talking about. She made her words come through life with the animation and tone in her voice. Dr. Angelou got her point across without degrading anyone, without raising her voice or even using profanity. She shares many of her personal life experiences with others not to gain their sympathy but to give them life, strength, and encouragement that no matter how bad things may seem, we can still rise above it all.
I would love to model some of my communication behaviors after this great woman because she spoke with confidence, elegance, and class. I would love to stand up in front of a lot of people and be able to communicate effectively and not roll my eyes when I do not agree with something, play on my phone if I get bored, or cross my arms when I do not want to hear what someone is saying. All those things are ineffective communication behaviors that we as professionals should not display at anytime. I would love to follow her communication behavior and be able to make eye contact with people that I am speaking with.