Public speaking seems to be something either you are quite good at, or that you avoid with all of your effort. The fact remains, though, that just about everyone could benefit from gaining some solid speaking skills. The article below is meant to provide some sound information for improving these essential abilities.
Know the audience that you will be speaking to. To help you get to know the audience, greet people as they enter and engage them in some conversation. By doing this, you will feel more comfortable when you go to the podium. It is much easier to speak to people you know.
Make sure you wear a supportive pair of shoes when you do public speaking. You want your posture to be tall and confident, with open and relaxed shoulders so you portray confidence. If you get tense on stage from feet, knee or low back pain, it will affect your speech greatly.
Being prepared is key to making good public speaking impressions. Know what you’re going to say. Research if you need support for your statements. Jot down notes on what you would like to say. Take time to practice your speech beforehand until you know it easily and well. Be prepared adds more confident while you’re speaking.
Know your surroundings. Take a few moments when you arrive to acquaint yourself with your surroundings. If you can arrive early, go to the podium and do a soundcheck before your audience arrives. If you have visual aids, practice using them while you are orientating yourself with your surroundings.
While delivering your speech, look at your audience. Do not turn your attention to things going on behind you or elsewhere. Since you are attempting to convince the audience with your words, they should command your complete attention.
Project your voice when you speak in front of an audience. This is particularly true if you do not have the benefit of a microphone. You want everyone in the room to be able to hear you, so do not be afraid to speak as loudly as necessary to accomplish that. There is no point in making a speech that most of the audience cannot hear.
Use deep breathing techniques to assuage your anxiety with regard to public speaking. Taking some deep breaths and then exhaling all the way before giving a speech can reduce nerves. Breathe in for a count of four, and then breathe out for a count of five. Do that five times total, and you’ll be amazed at how you feel!
One key to a successful speech is to make it an appropriate length. Basically, when a speech is too short, you may not be giving all the information the audience is looking for. On the other hand, if your speech is too long, your audience may become bored and you may lose their attention.
Take the time to research other important speeches. The internet has a wealth of recorded speeches so that you can observe how they do it. Focus on the qualities that you liked in their speech and emulate them. Look for qualities such as their ease in speaking, their humor and how they capture the attention of the audience.
Prior to giving your actual speech, practice it in front of a loved one. When you are done, ask them which parts of the speech are fine and which parts need some improvement. You may even want to read it to a few people. This feedback can help improve your speech.
Videotape a couple of practice sessions of your public speaking engagements. When you can see yourself in action this way, you can easily see what you can improve upon. It may be the way you move your hands or the expression on your face. Seeing this on film gives you a more objective perspective.
Be familiar with your audience, and tailor your remarks to them. If you are speaking to children, you will have a different message and style than if you are speaking to a group of executives. Doing a bit of research about the group you are addressing can help you come up with a suitable message and style for your speech.
Include examples and stories into your speech as illustrations. This will make your audience more interested in the information you are presenting. By including information about your family through stories and illustrations, the audience will see you as a person instead of another guest speaker. Limit the stories to one or two for best results.
When you have s speaking engagement coming up, practice the delivery on a couple of trusted friends. They can give you some suggestions on your delivery and your appearance. They may be able to observe negative things that you cannot see in yourself. They can help you iron out the kinks in your speech.
Know what your strengths are. Frame your speech around your strengths. For example, if you can tell a great story, tell one that your audience will enjoy. Find a way to incorporate the story into your speech in such a way that it flows seamlessly into the presentation of the facts you need to get across.
Visit your venue a few days in advance to get the lay of the land. Being familiar with the room where you will speak will make everything easier and more comfortable. On the day of the event, be sure to arrive early to socialize with members of your audience and begin creating a connection.
Focus on the speed with which you give a speech. Nerves can cause you to speed up the pace of your presentation, and this makes it difficult for your audience to catch the most important points. Slow yourself down, but make sure you’re not slowing down too much or your audience might get bored. Take the time to practice and time your speech until you get it right.
If you have never enjoyed the prospect of giving a speech in front of others, fear no longer. The advantages you can gain by becoming more proficient in speechmaking are innumerable. Therefore, by using your newly-acquired knowledge, you are on the cusp of realizing great strides in your personal development.