BACH TALKS: David Bach speaks to Elia Nichols

Internationally renowned financial experts and ten times New York Times best seller David Bach Interview an entrepreneur in Florence who achieved inspirational things during this plague time in this new column titled. backtalk. This first conversation with Public Speaking and Communication Coach Elia Nichols Held at Hotel Lungarno.

David Bach: so you are Actor for over 15 years and during covid You know you should Turn around and start this new business.. In less than two years You become needed to do practice speaking, teach organizations and executives how to better present to the public We hired you to shoot your first video with and you coach Jack. my son for an interview in college

Elia Nichols: it started to come back again Nothing happened right away. i am an actor I got a bachelor’s and master’s degree in acting. So I’ve been trained in a variety of acting methods that teach you how to master your body language and voice, such as the Alexander Technique and Patsy Rodenburg’s Speaking Technique. So it was a natural progression. Around 2018 something happened. My husband, Michele, had all these coaching clients. which suddenly gathered, he said, What is a coach? What are these people doing? I explained it to him and said, But you can! You can become a public speaking coach. and i said Basically, I am already. I have been teaching this for many years.and he said Yes, but you teach college kids. What if you go one step further? I just sit on it and reflect. during that time I have a few friends who are not promoted. who are finding it difficult to meet their partner I thought to myself I know why they are not promoted. I know why they haven’t met their partner.It’s because their body language and voice don’t communicate confidence, abilities, and abilities. I realized I could teach them to look and feel more confident in seconds. It will change their lives drastically. i got mine tax numberBusiness ID in Italy and business starts immediately.

David: the truth is in today’s world If you can’t communicate You must have a hard time. From accepting a job to convincing your team. It’s all in your communication abilities.. Obviously you can have all the features or the best product in the world. But what if you don’t know how to sell it in seconds on a zoomed screen? Show that you are done I’m on the board of International School of Florence and this summer We need to find the head of the school. After the search company and our leadership team are limited to the shortlisted people. what impresses me And this is where we go back to you. Well, I’m going to hold a CV in my hand and all of these people are incredibly certified on paper. But if they don’t communicate well within a few minutes on Zoom, they’re at a disadvantage. This is not just for executives, this is for everyone.

Elia: Of course, it’s about presenting yourself well. I teach good training on how to present on Zoom and Google Meet because these digital platforms offer a completely different level of augmented reality communication. for example, Eye contact is one of the key ways we build good rapport with others.But if you want to make eye contact with your audience on Zoom, you have to look into the camera. It’s a tool I was taught as an actor. It’s really weird because you can actually see the audience’s faces on the screen under the camera, but you can’t look at them. when you listen to the audience You can see their faces on the screen. It gives feedback from the audience. That’s what you want, right? Another thing to remember is that your hands talk a lot. But on the zoom, the hand slips away because only one third of us is shown in a small square on the screen. Two thirds of our body language and communication are lost! That makes miscommunication very common. Your hands communicate a lot. So you have to keep it within the frame of the screen. Another thing is that cameras have a weird effect of emphasizing and exaggerating what they see physically. but also flatten your personality. Therefore, more energy is required than usual in real life. Zoom fatigue is real because doing a good job presenting online is exhausting.

Elia Nichols with David Bach at Hotel Lungarno in December 2021 Ph. @marcobadiani

David: How many minutes does someone give in a Zoom interview to get that person’s attention?

Elia: Max is five, but the magic number is about two to three. Typically, you lose your audience within the first five minutes.

David: The real world here. My son Jack is a senior and he is applying to college. You taught him only in two Zoom interviews. How is it possible for you to effectively get someone and coach them to influence quickly in an interview?

Elia: It’s about self-awareness. You have to show people what they’re doing. For example, I recorded an interview with Zoom so Jack can look later and see his body language. when he shuts down When he seems insecure and why, etc., the only way to change and improve is by be aware of what you do So you can restrain your bad habits. and move your body and voice in the right direction. for interview Two sessions are enough. I don’t think you need more. you prepare in advance you shouldn’t ever interview without preparation You can prepare for 90% of the content of the interview because the questions are always the same. You can also guess difficult questions. i call it “Sniper question” because someone in the interview will try to make you..

David: What is an example sniper question?

Elia: Why should I choose you over others? That’s a very difficult question. Unless you’ve thought about what makes you unique, that’s the answer.

David: Who usually hires you?

Elia: Large companies such as Menarini, Aqurance and bioMerieuxincluding institutions such as the European University Institute in Fiesole when I first started my business. I won the tender as a public speaking coach. I have quite a few clients in America as well, such as Thomas Cuisine and Lions + Tigers, which are large companies that want to hone their executives, managers and employees’ communication skills.

Elia Nichols with David Bach at Hotel Lungarno in December 2021.

David: What percentage of your business is doing online versus face-to-face?

Elia: 95% are online Tomorrow I have a one-on-one training. I should be doing something else myself next week. But they moved online. which is okay I spin and I can. But of course the results will be different.

David: I’m curious. Do you think anyone can practice communication or someone is just desperate?

Elia: Everyone can train! The toughest customers are those with very low energy. shy customers because Being a good communicator is a must. of energy.

David: But you can’t train someone to think like that, can you? because it is a learned skill.

Elia: Which came first, the chicken or the egg? Some people are naturally gifted and good communicators, some aren’t, but I teach them the body language and vocal behaviors of attractive people. and asked them to try them. Every day, it became part of their lives. and at first charming behavior These “affected” slowly becoming natural

David: What I find very interesting is that people who are highly successful in business and almost everything tend to have natural communication abilities. However, I also know a lot of people who have learned to communicate. It’s important to know that anyone can do it if you have a good coach. You have 15 years of expertise and you can customize that right away. and sit down for someone in an hour or two and gifted them 15 years of knowledge

Elia: One of the reasons I liked this job was because I saw a huge change in the people I coached. i will give you an example I have a really interesting client recently, he’s a researcher studying genes and creating gene therapy, like cancer treatment. especially for your genes wonderful man But from the moment he started speaking I couldn’t even understand what he was saying. Why? Because he had the words running through our heads. The first thing I taught him was audience analysis: You have to analyze who your listeners are and you have to speak to them. If we don’t understand what you’re saying Indicates that your message has been lost. We try to reduce his vocabulary to listener level. As well as using stories and examples to better explain the complexity of the subject matter. Then we work to ensure his accent. because he uses a Northern Irish accent It is understandable to the Italians and all the different cultures he will encounter. He takes all of this and makes him approachable and interesting to listen to.

Elia Nichols with David Bach at Hotel Lungarno in December 2021 Ph. @marcobadiani

David: What if you are a mother or father? as a parent You must know how to communicate effectively with your child.

Elia: in body language silence is power. When you think of great leaders Those leaders are especially powerful when they are at rest. If you do that with a child They will be direct and listen to you. You have to go down to their level and look into their eyes when you speak to them.

David: What about communication techniques with spouses?

Elia: I think you’ll agree that screaming doesn’t help.

David: It doesn’t work for my family!

Elia: It doesn’t work for my family either. So, sincerity, warmth, relaxation, you know what else is cool? Consistency, that is, when you match the posture of anyone’s body in front of you. It communicates the similarities and preferences between two people. You can do it with your voice. You matched the tone of the person in front of you. If you really want your spouse to listen to you. and feel connected to you You must agree with them.

David: The first thing they teach you in NLP is to reflect on the body of the person you are with…

Elia: Yes, even if you don’t want to do it negatively. If someone screams, they shouldn’t scream. But if they’re slower than you, speak slowly if their tone is calmer or warmer. Speak in a calmer or warmer tone. Copy their gestures and tones. Then they will feel that you are in line with them at that moment.

David: What makes a good toast?

Elia: Lots of energy, openness, beautiful voices, laughter, humor.

David: Should the bread be prepared in advance?

Elia: The easiest way to make great toasts is with stories. Find a story that will connect us all because stories are universal. we see ourselves in them

If you or your business requires communication and public speaking practice, please contact Elia Nichols at or visit

To revitalize, reshape and unleash your true creative nature, join Elia Nichols for The Retreat of a Lifetime at Relais Ortaglia in Montepulciano. From April 20 to 26 with author Sandy Abrams, artist Gianna Vallefuoco and agribusiness owner Sandy Ferretti.

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