Wednesday, 5 March 2014

Monroe's Motivated Sequence

The following is an excerpt from the website "Mindtools" (click here) and introduces a method of motivational speaking called Monroe's Motivated Sequence. It poses the question whether some people are born speakers and motivators or can they be taught certain techniques to help them.

"While there are certainly those who seem to inspire and deliver memorable speeches effortlessly, the rest of us can learn how to give effective presentations too. Key factors include putting together a strong message and delivering it in the right sequence.

Monroe's Motivated Sequence: The Five Steps

Alan H. Monroe, a Purdue University professor, used the psychology of persuasion to develop an outline for making speeches that will deliver results. It's now known as Monroe's Motivated Sequence.

This is a well-used and time-proven method to organize presentations for maximum impact. You can use it for a variety of situations to create and arrange the components of any message. The steps are explained below.

Step One: Get Attention
Get the attention of your audience. Use storytelling  , humor, a shocking statistic, or a rhetorical question – anything that will get the audience to sit up and take notice.

Note:
This step doesn't replace your introduction – it's part of your introduction. In your opening, you should also establish your credibility, state your purpose, and let the audience know what to expect. Delivering Great Presentations provides a strong foundation for building the steps in Monroe's Motivated Sequence.

Step Two: Establish the Need
Convince your audience there's a problem. This set of statements must help the audience realize that what's happening right now isn't good enough – and it needs to change.

Use statistics to back up your statements.
Talk about the consequences of maintaining the status quo and not making changes.
Show your audience how the problem directly affects them.
Remember, you're not at the "I have a solution" stage. Here, you want to make the audience uncomfortable and restless, and ready to do the "something" that you recommend.

Step Three: Satisfy the Need
Introduce your solution. How will you solve the problem that your audience is ready to address? This is the main part of your presentation. It will vary significantly, depending on your purpose.

Discuss the facts.
Elaborate and give details to make sure the audience understands your position and solution.
Clearly state what you want the audience to do or believe.
Summarize your information from time to time as you speak.
Use examples, testimonials, and statistics to prove the effectiveness of your solution.
Prepare counterarguments to anticipated objections.

Step Four: Visualize the Future
Describe what the situation will look like if the audience does nothing. The more realistic and detailed the vision, the better it will create the desire to do what you recommend. Your goal is to motivate the audience to agree with you and adopt similar behaviors, attitudes, and beliefs. Help them see what the results could be if they act the way you want them to. Make sure your vision is believable and realistic.

You can use three methods to help the audience share your vision:

Positive method – Describe what the situation will look like if your ideas are adopted. Emphasize the positive aspects.
Negative method – Describe what the situation will look like if your ideas are rejected. Focus on the dangers and difficulties caused by not acting.
Contrast method – Develop the negative picture first, and then reveal what could happen if your ideas are accepted.

Step Five: Action/Actualization
Your final job is to leave your audience with specific things they can do to solve the problem. You want them to take action now. Don't overwhelm them with too much information or too many expectations, and be sure to give them options to increase their sense of ownership of the solution. This can be as simple as inviting them to have some refreshments as you walk around and answer questions. For very complex problems, the action step might be getting together again to review plans.

For some of us, persuasive arguments and motivational speaking come naturally. The rest of us may try to avoid speeches and presentations, fearing that our message won't be well received. Using Monroe's Motivated Sequence, you can improve your persuasive skills and your confidence.

Get the attention of your audience, create a convincing need, define your solution, describe a detailed picture of success (or failure), and ask the audience to do something right away: It's a straightforward formula for success that's been used time and again. Try it for your next presentation, and you'll no doubt be impressed with the results!

Check out the following websites which have lots more information and helps:
http://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/MonroeMotivatedSequence.htm
http://www.sanjuan.edu/webpages/mikeberry/speech.cfm?subpage=66682


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