Unless you speak professionally, then you probably find the idea of making a speech unpleasant. You’re not the only one like this. Not a lot of people are comfortable doing public speaking. You can boost your confidence level and become more effective with a few helpful tips. Continue reading to learn the insider secrets to public speaking.
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.
Do not allow anything to distract you while you are speaking in public. It is crucial that you don’t participate in activities like twiddling your thumbs or jingling keys. This will give your audience the idea that you would rather be doing something else than be there talking to them.
Do not try to be someone else when giving your speech. If you want to grab your audience’s attention, you cannot come across as fake; your audience will not take you seriously. So, in other words, avoid saying things you would not normally say and don’t do anything you normally would not do.
Take a look at the venue before you make your speech. See how big the room is, how many seats there are, and what the lighting is like. You will feel less nervous when you know what environment you will be dealing with. Also, try standing at the podium to get a feel of the stage.
Engage your audience prior to delivering your speech. Smile as they enter, and if it’s possible, shake some hands as you welcome them. The audience is sure to show more interest when you have a good attitude.
Take your time while delivering your speech. One sure fired way for the audience to know that you are nervous is to rush through your speech. Instead, take a deep breath and calm your nerves before beginning. Speak slightly slower than normal when giving a speech to ensure that your audience understands what you are saying.
When preparing a speech that contains large amounts of information, don’t be too proud to use note cards. Even the most gifted orators recognize the usefulness of notes. It is preferable to quickly glance at your notes rather than cite information incorrectly or omit key points. This works especially well when the topic includes specific figures, such as dollar amounts, percentages, and dates.
Many people start a speech with a joke in order to grab the audience’s attention, so keep this in mind as you are figuring out what to say. If you are going to tell a joke, make sure that it is tasteful and on topic. Otherwise, you risk alienated some of them.
Eye contact is critical during public speaking engagements. Although you may not be able to make eye contact with every member of a large audience, your efforts will not go unnoticed. Before your speech, identify key members of the audience and their assigned seating, if possible. This enables you to make the greatest impact on the most important audience members.
Be sure to use appropriate visual aids to make your speech more interesting. A picture or an object is worth a thousand words and can add depth and dimension to your presentation. Be creative in your choices of visual aids. Photos, paintings, sculpture, souvenirs, charts, graphs and many other types of objects can help you get your point across clearly.
If you are scheduled to make a speech, arrive at your venue at least half an hour early. This will give you a chance to set up, to practice and perhaps to relax a bit. If you rush in just a few minutes before your speech, you will not have time to prepare.
Try to learn something about your audience before you give your speech. Your goal is to connect with your audience when you speak. If you know a little bit about them, it makes the connection a little easier. If it is an event where people have to register in advance, you can look at the registrations to get an idea of our registrants.
Try some vocal warm ups prior to speaking in public. This is critical if you’re speaking early in the morning. Otherwise, you may have difficulty getting through the speech. This causes your voice to crack and will give a tight and tinny sound to your voice.
Many of the most gifted public speakers never intended on becoming such successful public speakers. But they were passionate about their cause and found the strength to do it. Then they discovered how their words could change people for the good and they soon went on to making many more speeches in their lives.
Try to greet audience members before the speech starts. It doesn’t matter if you know everyone in your audience or you know none of them, it should be done. If you are dealing with a large audience, walk through the crowd and try to shake some hands. If your crowd is small, take the time to approach everyone individually. This can increase everyone’s comfort level and make your speech better.
Use metaphors to help your audience understand the topic better. A metaphor can be defined as comparing two unlike things to get a point across. For example, you can compare a child’s messy room to a pigpen. Although the child’s room doesn’t look like a pigpen, it is messy like one.
Get familiar with the environment you will be speaking in. Familiarize yourself with the room or outdoor space. Make sure you are comfortable in it. Learn about the acoustics of the room. If there’s going to be a microphone, experiment with the sound system a bit. The more comfortable you are in the room, the better.
After reading the above suggestions, you should now have more confidence to take on your next speech. Simply use the tips above to your advantage. Now you know how to be prepared to make impactful speeches. You should no longer feel terrified at the thought of public speaking.