How to ‘hold the floor’ in a meeting
You know the feeling. You’ve made a point in a group meeting and have another great point to add to the first point, but you need a few extra seconds to translate the idea from your brain into speech. How do you hold the floor so you have the time to deliver the idea without getting interrupted?
You simply place an out-stretched hand (palm down) in front of you and hold it there while you pause and take the time to find the words. In effect, you are ‘owning time’. People (most) won’t interrupt you while you do this, as long as you don’t pause for too long, and project certainty through your face and body.
Aim to hold the arm stationary in space at about mid-chest height.
Some of my speech communication and sales presentation clients, who haven’t used this technique before, feel awkward with it at first. (They over-think where they should hold their arm, or hold their arm with a lack of certainty).
Success in using the technique comes from practice. It comes from your belief that people should give you that time, and that you will be able to find the words you want – and that your view should be heard.
The ‘how to apply’ for this post: In safe situations, trial the ‘holding the floor’ out-stretched hand, technique and reflect on your performance.