In this post I’m going to focus on some more tips that you can use when doing public speaking or presentations to help you deliver a great speech.
Public speaking get is the one of the biggest phobias of people and it does not come naturally to most. That doesn’t mean we can’t all be great presenters or speakers. In my last post I spoke about key elements like rehearsal and knowing your material. But there are even more things you can do in order to be a great speaker.
The best speakers I ever saw all had one overarching trend to their speeches – they were all incredibly passionate about the topics they spoke of. Having a deep rooted passion for your subject naturally appears as you talk to your audience. Showing your listeners that you care deeply about the topic will in turn keep the audience more tuned into your presentation. Excitement is contagious and if they see you excited, it will raise their energy levels as well. It sounds silly but you want your audience to feel comfortable with you and trust in your knowledge of the subject. Not much else can build trust better than seeing passion flow from a speaker.
Have a Script But Converse
Rarely do great speeches or presentations come “off the cuff” so to speak. A lot of planning and practice goes into delivering a great presentation. However the truly great speakers will make it not feel like a speech at all. Great speakers will make their delivery seem almost casual, like they are having a conversation with you. You want to make your audience feel like they have an individual connection with you as you deliver your content. Being able to ad-lib some portions of a formal speech will give the audience a deeper sense of your knowledge of the topic (this is where a deep knowledge of the material is critical). A technique I often employ is to practice my delivery as though I’m telling a story to a friend. It let’s you relax a little bit as you deliver but also conveys a deeper sense of understanding your topic.
Engage Your Audience
Audience reception is the measure of a good speech or presentation. Your audience should leave feeling enriched from the experience of watching you speak. Regardless of it’s a business presentation where you want to sell them a solution or product or a eulogy where you are remembering a loved one and want to share those memories with the audience, you are delivering a message that you want the audience take with them. Look people in the eyes, focus on individuals rather than the masses, make them feel connected to you personally. Use language they will understand, relate as best you can to their personalities but also let yours shine through. You’re essentially trying to make friends with each audience member in your speech.
Presentations and public speaking is one of the scariest things we will be asked to do, but it doesn’t have to be. I hope you try some of these tips as you continue to hone and refine your public speaking skills.
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