Last night I was listening to a podcast where the editor of Ad Age was speaking about the role of traditional advertising in 2008.  I hope he listened to it himself and gained some useful feedback.  What I noticed was the incessant use of the phrase “you know” after nearly every sentence and after 30 minutes it was wearing a bit thin.  I had stopped listening to the content and was only listening for the phrase.

So for anyone who does public speaking (like I do) or records podcasts, the most useful thing you can do is to record your sessions (as you will be if you are making a podcast) and then listen to them again.  Try to put yourself in the shoes of the audience and listen for any annoying ehs, uhuhs or such things.

Often people use these sorts of phrases because they don’t like silence and try to fill it up.  The skill of a presenter or an interviewer for a podcast is to relish the silence.  Its gives the listener time to analyse what is being said and to prepare themselves for the next part of the session. So go on……learn to love silence!