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Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Separate Rote Learning from Meaningful Delivery

Yesterday's post, Meaningful vs. Rote Delivery, opened the idea that speakers often act unenthused.

Where does this come from?

One of the places it comes from is our habits with memorization. Many speakers practice for familiarity/memorization of their message and fall into rote memorization and delivery patterns.

In school we were taught mathematics patterns through flashcards, scientific theories through rote memorization and delivery. Spelling bees were another case for quick responses, minus the emotional delivery.

We were rewarded when we got it right, encouraged to speed up with the next response.

Each of these cases encouraged us to memorize answers. Although through repetition and song we created long-term learning (our ABC's, for example) for most of us, the rote memorization was to help us past short term learning exercises.

Yet when it comes to influencing people, rote memorization falls short. Quick, unenthusiastic delivery creates little engagement from the jury and the court, or from those listening to a sales pitch or sitting in  a classroom.

If your expertise is invested in subjects that required rote memorization, adjust your patterns when you need to influence. Learn through quick repetitive measures, yet when speaking about the information, slow down and attach meaning.