I learned a neat little trick once that makes people stop whatever they're doing, talking about, or thinking, and listen up!
It's silence. Not just silence, but stopping talking in the middle of a sentence. Just. stop. talking.
And anyone/everyone else will gradually stop talking as well, because there is something in the rhythm and tone of our speech that speaks to our brain before the meaning speaks to it. In other words, we are accustomed hearing speech rather like we do a song!
If the song doesn't end but is instead abruptly stopped, we notice! There is no difference in how we hear speech.
So the next time you are in front of a room of people speaking to one another and you need their attention, grab that microphone, you could say what you ordinarily would say, "May I have your attention please?" "We are coming back now, would everyone take your seat?" or you could say something longer and then stop in the middle. Like this:
"Okay everyone, I know we're having a fantastic time talking to one another but it is time to come back to the seminar. So everyone, please take a seat, and I know that this is a great deal of fun, but..."
and stop talking.
If you just wait...one by one, people will stop talking and turn to the stage to listen.
It's a fun little trick, and it works.
Lori Kirstein believes in following and creating only those rules that t support your best self in work and in life. Communication done with awareness and skill is not only possible, it is life and career-changing. Communication is just a different kind of learning. And it is one that brings incredible rewards and joy in all aspects of our lives.