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The utility of a blank stare

One of the things that we lack as speakers on a large stage is the blank stare of our audience. Even more so when the large stage is virtual so that you’re looking into a camera.

The blank stare in a 1:1 conversation (or in a meeting) informs us about our blind spots. What are the things that are clear to us but make no sense for our audience?

You can’t reliably find that out alone. You need other people’s help. Alone, in your office, you lack these blank stares, the kind of stares that make you look for simpler ways of explaining your idea.

Practicing in front of a small live audience helps. As do private conversations. Use these as a testing environment for the clarity of your communication. Too many speakers avoid these situation because a blank stare embarasses them.

I think it’s the best thing that can happen to you. It allows you to fix your blind spots.

Look for and embrace the blank stares!

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