Are you one of the countless folks who simply dreads the prospect of speaking in public? Do you start sweating at the mere contemplation of it? If you have long been troubled by speaking in front of groups, but would like to make a change, this article is meant for you.
Commit your speech to your memory as soon as you can. After you can say it from memory, figure out how you want the delivery to go. Memorize it and you will feel more comfortable with it.
The tone of your speech should depend on who you are giving it to. For instance, if your speech is work-related, your speech should be professional. On the other hand, if you are around friends and have to make a speech, you can be more personal. Base your whole speech on your audience.
Make eye contact with your audience members. Doing so makes them feel as if you are speaking directly to them and helps keep them engaged. It also makes you appear confident and poised. Look at various members of the audience as you speak to help engage as many of them as possible.
Make sure that the beginning of your speech is a moment to relax. Greet and address your audience. Then pause for three seconds. This gives them a chance to focus on you, while you get a moment to transform your nervous energy into enthusiasm for the material you are about to deliver.
The more public speaking you do, the more comfortable you will become. To help you gain the experience you need, offer to go to your local high school to share your knowledge with others. Most teachers are happy to have executives visit their class to give their students a chance to hear about different careers.
Always be yourself when you are giving a speech and you will have better luck with the audience. Sincerity is a quality that many people respect and admire. If it is clear to the audience that you are not putting on a show when you are speaking to them, they will receive your message better.
Make use of note cards. Though memorizing your speech is always wise, keeping a written copy on hand is also smart. Your entire speech need not be written out, but make note cards on the key points to make sure you do not forget anything.
Be sure to practice your speech well in advance. Practice often so that you can deliver your thoughts naturally and smoothly. Use a timer to perfect the length of your speech. In this way, you will neither leave your audience hanging with time to spare, nor force them to stay longer than they wish.
When it comes time to make a speech in a public place, try to arrive early. This can help you become better acquainted with your surroundings. Getting familiar with the layout of the room, the microphones, and the other speech aids that are available in that room can help you become more relaxed before speaking.
Don’t over do the visual aids. They should help enhance your speech. They shouldn’t overwhelm your message. For your most important points, make sure your visuals are of a high quality. They need to be appealing and bright, but not distracting.
If you use a computer program to present pictures and information, be sure that you know how to operate it. The last thing you want is to waste the time when you are supposed to be speaking with a lot of computer fiddling. Practice your speech and your visual aids presentation thoroughly.
If using slides or other visual aids that include printed messages, assume your audience knows how to read. You can paraphrase the message on the slide, but don’t just read it aloud. This wastes your time and insults your audience’s intelligence. By presenting written material and supporting it with a slightly different spoken version, your message will be more memorable.
Do not make apologies. Apologizing for being nervous, repeating yourself, stuttering or making any other kind of mistake only draws attention to it. It also makes you and your audience unnecessarily uncomfortable. Keep speaking and try to recover from any mistakes to keep your audience at ease and interested.
Be sure to warm your audience up before speaking. That does not mean that you open with a joke. Just share a little story from your life or about your day that they can identify with. This can be a very effective means of making a solid connection with your listeners.
Take a look at the venue where you are scheduled to give a speech prior to the event. This will give you a good idea of where the audience will be sitting and where you will be speaking. It will help set you at ease when you get there since the place will be a bit familiar.
Try to relax when it comes time for you speak in public. If you need time before your speech, try pausing, smiling, and silently counting to three to relax. When you start speaking, make sure you address your audience. This can also give you some extra time to calm down.
Create a simple outline for better public presentations. In public speaking your aim is clear communication. This does not happen by chance. A simple outline should include an introduction, a body and a conclusion. The introduction should capture attention and present your thesis. The body should include your major ideas. The conclusion should repeat your thesis and end with a call to action. Using an outline will ensure that your ideas are presented in an understandable manner.
Think about the purpose of your speech. Do you need to persuade someone? Are you speaking to entertain? Maybe you are speaking to educate your audience. Always keep your purpose in mind to make a great speech. Make sure that every statement in your speech is working toward that goal.
Perhaps you have always harbored a fear of public speaking. It may be that your career has been hindered by your avoidance of addressing others. Fortunately, by utilizing the advice you have just read, there is no reason at all for you to continue to be hampered by your fear and worry.