Often, the objectives of communications coaching are wrong. In fact, the wrong type of communications coaching can be far worse than none at all – you only have to look at certain politicians, ‘performances’ at corporate events, and the trained salesperson – to see this.
If we look to politics, you may remember that famous interview with Gordon Brown, where he has been so obviously coached to be energetic, and friendly. I’m sure his advisors were full of praise – but the result is painful; his execution of this ‘cosmetic’ advice is such an anathema to his personality he cannot ‘fake it’.


So, it’s your own individual communications style when you are relaxed and confident, that is so important to keep. But how many people can achieve the same level of engagement that they do 1-on-1, when they’re speaking to an executive board, or a room full of stakeholders? Those that can are typically the most successful.


Whether you are of the political left or right, two of the greatest political communicators of modern times are Bill Clinton and Ronald Reagan… love or loath them. Two very different personalities, but both totally relaxed in their own skin. Both, by just talking with an audience, rather than at an audience, achieve authentic conversational excellence. Of course, both were extensively coached... but to build on their strengths, not start from scratch.