Being a leader is about more than just being smart or having great ideas. Truly effective leaders are those who can clearly present their ideas and inspire others. Most great leaders have a few speaking patterns in common. Here are a few tips and tricks for speaking like a good leader.

Do Speak From the Heart

When people are nervous about public speaking, they are tempted to memorize scripts. However, this usually leads to a speech that sounds robotic and bland. Good leaders instead try to speak from the heart. When they are truly passionate about what they are discussing, their enthusiasm will infect the audience and get everyone else excited too.

Don’t Be Vague and Noncommittal

Good leaders are not afraid to talk about what they hope to accomplish. Being vague can ensure that a speech offends no one, but it also means that no one is really interested. It can be better to have discussions that lead to debate instead of conversations that no one remembers. Skip words like “kind of” or “sort of” that make you sound uncertain, and instead speak clearly and definitively.

Do Use Simple and Clear Language

Good leaders need to talk in a way that everyone can understand. This means skipping technical jargon or long, complicated words unless the entire audience is comfortable using them. Leaders should also avoid regularly tossing superlatives like “incredible” and “awesome” in their speech because it makes them sound insincere or overly excitable.

Don’t Data Dump

Having facts to back up an argument is important, but good leader do not just stand there and list facts and figures. This is a bad idea because the audience tends to get bored and distracted. Instead, just describe the general meaning of the figures, and let the audience know you have the data if they want to check it out later.

Don’t Hide Criticism Inside Compliments

A lot of being a leader is being willing to talk about things that need improving. Insecure leaders often try to start with a compliment and then tack the criticism of the end. This is a bad idea because it harms morale and makes the compliment seem insincere. Try to find ways to phrase negative opinions politely yet confidently.

The way you communicate to those around you can make a monumental impact on the ability to lead effectively. The above tips will help you navigate proper communication to be the best leader possible.