The Donald hasn’t tapped out, but a series of flip flop statements had viewers of the first presidential debate wondering what inaccuracies he might manufacture next.
The Toronto Star reported there were 34 Trump falsehoods declared in the debate, compared to Clinton’s four lies.
The first 2016 presidential debate is a good example of what it means to be trained and prepared in order to deliver a great speech and solid debate.
Donald Trump made a number of basic mistakes while debating Hillary Clinton. He was loud and evasive and couldn’t get his facts straight. When Clinton challenged Trump, and he didn’t have a reasonable answer or he was caught on the spot having to defend a ludicrous past statement, he simply turned up the volume of his voice and yelled over her.
In stark contrast, and even though she was sometimes just as evasive, Hillary stood her ground and waited patiently for him to fizzle out and sputter before she responded. When she was lost for words she rolled her eyes, and instead of answering Trump’s pointed questions about her past history, she deflected by dismissing him in a non sequitur-like manner.
He had an opportunity to capitalize on her weaknesses, but he doesn’t have strong enough speaking skills to think on his feet and turn it to his favor. He needs to learn to speak like a politician, and to turn down his sales pitch hyperbole.
Trump has a reputation for not preparing for speeches, and although it was clear he did some type of preparation for the first debate, it was just as clear he was mostly winging it as usual.
Clinton on the other hand, regardless of her answers acted more like an experienced politician, remaining relatively calm and not reacting to Trump’s cacophony of inflaming statements.
If anything, Hillary has been criticized for not showing her human side. She made an attempt at it by talking about her father, but she could have done more.
Trump, the immutable hot-headed reactionist, did little to calm worries that he is too much of a loose cannon hovering over the nuclear button.
It’s quite possible Trump did have some type of recent media and speaker training because for a very brief moment at the beginning of the debate he actually looked and sounded statesmen-like, but as soon as a hard question zipped across his bow he crumbled like a saltine cracker into hot soup and fell into his old “wrestling/boxing promoter” persona.
The reality is that viewers are way more impacted by how a speaker delivers their message than they are about the words used. Body language tells us a lot about a speaker. It telegraphs truth, nervousness, and confidence. A well trained speaker knows how to manage these traits effectively.
Famous research by Dr. Albert Morabian while at the University of California in Los Angeles explains it perfectly. He demonstrated that when you say something, 55% of the way your attitudes and emotions are interpreted comes from the way you use your body and your face when you say it.
38% of how you feel about what you say comes from the voice, tone, texture, and level of conviction.
Words account for only 7% of how your attitudes and emotions are interpreted.
When we speak, we have to juggle the visual, vocal, and verbal so that we can look like we mean what we say and say what we mean.
We need to say it like we mean it!
Viewers of the debate constantly received “subconscious” body language messages from Clinton and Trump, without realizing they were making decisions about the winner based mostly on what they saw and not what they heard. If you want to more easily decipher who wields more influence during a debate, turn the sound off and only use your eyes to decide the winner.
Instinctively, Trump knows that people respond better to emotion and not to dry statistical facts. He knows that when his level of exuberance goes up people pay more attention to the noise he makes. Unfortunately for Trump though, he put all his eggs into this one basket, which is not good enough for any speaker, especially a president.
Trump’s body language showed he was defeated. His shoulders were hunched, he kept leaning into the microphone, he was making strange faces and looking away. Hillary won the body language war too.
Some will no doubt argue that based on body language numbers alone, Trump would come out ahead, but he only gets the psychological nuance partially right. It can’t all be vacuous energy. There also has to be substance and that’s where Trump fell short. The basis of a statement has to be accurate and believable before you paint it with a confident series of body language intonation and facial modeling. There needs to be balance between your words and actions.
Pundits and viewers awarded Clinton a victory in the first round, which means Trump has to get a better handle on how to deliver a message more effectively in order to influence voters. If he’s smart and he really wants to win the next debate and the presidential race he’d be well advised to sit down with a media trainer and pay attention.
Watch more about BODY LANGUAGE from my short video
I recently hosted a series on lynda.com called “Communicating with Confidence”
Here’s a video on using your hands
Here’s what the NY Times Fact Checkers reported after the debate
RealTime Fact Checking DURING the debate …
Speaking & Presentations Skills Training
Media Strategies for Politicians, Public Servants, & Government Spokespersons