Man pointing at himself

“I can win an argument on any topic, against any opponent. People know this, and steer clear of me at parties. Often, as a sign of their great respect, they don’t even invite me.”

Dave Barry (1947- )

The American humor columnist, Dave Barry, makes a good point. “Know-it-alls” aren’t terribly popular. Here are some tips for not sounding overbearing to your audience:

  • Don’t argue small points. Acknowledge that some people feel that way and move on.
  • Ask the audience for examples rather than supplying them all yourself. This will also test their buy-in to your topic.
  • Tell success stories that don’t involve you. The fewer times you use the word “I”, the less like an egomaniac you’ll appear to your audience.

Check Out Our New Communication Q&A Series