Communication Skills – a DJ’s Best Asset


Masses of books have been written on this topic and rightly so.  In this day and age communication skills are vital in nearly every field of human endeavour.  In fact, if you look at what employers across industries are looking for in a prospective employee, things like qualifications and technical skills very often take a back seat to communication skills.

This is especially true in a people oriented field like the entertainment industry.  If you use words well opportunities open up to you.  Honed communication skills can help you persuade people, negotiate effectively, diffuse conflict, lead, express yourself clearly, appear intelligent, make friends easily, get what you want, deal with people and network.

This is why communication skills are so important.  They are a bigger determinant of your success in life (and of course the DJ industry) than any other talent.  That’s why it’s unfathomable that they’re given so little attention in school.  Maths, Physics, History and other conventional subjects are staples of nearly every education system in the world, but communication skills, forget it, they remain virtually untaught (save for a few speech competitions and debates).

The net result is that this invaluable life skill lies dormant and undeveloped in 95% of the population, including and especially DJs. Again though, therein lies the beauty.  If you can actually take the time to cultivate your communication skills, you immediately propel yourself into a powerful minority.  It’s the social equivalent of a PhD.  Once this happens you’ll find yourself competing with a vastly unfair weapon, one that will open doors with club owners, agencies, managers, contacts – all the people you need to be interacting with.

Whilst it’s worth the effort, the road to improving your talent for communication is not easy.  Like most things worth earning in life it will take your time and unlike clothing, the speech habits you’ve cultivated over a lifetime won’t be shed overnight.

The first thing to do is to break the myth that you’re either born a speaker or you’re not. No public speaking gene has as yet been found and more importantly, there are concrete communication techniques that can radically improve anyone’s abilities. I have seen plenty of evidence of this in the communication courses I run and here’s are some quick pointers to help you improve straight away: 1. Speak slowly and clearly

When nerves creep in people tend to speed up their speech so they can “get through it”.  If you feel this happening to you then just take a deep breath and slow your speech down.

2. Have a reason to be talking

Some DJs fall into the trap of thinking that they are the “star of the show” and even if you’ve been hired as the MC (Master of Ceremonies) the function or event will still be taking place for someone else’s benefit.  Remember the mnemonic WAIT which stands for Why Am I Talking?

3. Remember people’s names 

Especially the people who booked you or are the centre of the function such as the Bride and Groom or birthday person.  If you don’t have a great memory for names have them written down where you can discreetly refer to them when needed.

4. Be confident

People are drawn to anyone who’s projecting confidence.  When you feel confident your voice will project much louder and clearer.  If you’re not feeling it then just act as if you are and it will show up.  Remember that the guests or attendees are not there hoping you’ll mess up they just want to have fun so think of them as a room full of friends.  Relax and enjoy your work!

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