I had the pleasure and honor of watching Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton give a master class demonstration of poise and presence during a question and answer session after a key note address. She used many of the techniques I am now sharing with you. There are so many elements to becoming a powerful communicator. Today we are discussing the element of presence. Here are some practical tips to capture and hold the attention of an audience while elevating your game as a speaker. 


Prepare your heart and your mind before you prepare your speech. You are there to serve the audience. Focus more on what they need and less on your performance. You will immediately elevate your presence.

Nonverbal Power

Remain keenly aware of your nonverbal affect. It overrides all other forms of communication; for better or worse. Use it to engender poise, confidence, and trust. It will draw your audience in.


Remember to breath deeply from the stomach. Proper breathing will not eliminate butterflies but quickly make them fly in formation. Proper breathing calms nerves, increases poise, and steadies a jumpy mind.

Think Before You Speak

Carefully consider your words. Be deliberate. Cutout preamble, waffling, and verbal meandering. Over explaining dilutes both your personal power and your message. Less is more when it comes to verbal communication.


Never forget your sense of humor. Wit reflects intelligence. It humanizes and reduces the space between you and your audience. Employ it judiciously though and remember self-deprecating humor is best.


Use the power of silence. Dare to pause. Capture the moment. Let dramatic elements of your message not only land with an audience but sit with them in a moment of silence. It is a dramatic and effective tool.