Though there are certainly some people with a natural knack for public speaking, many more seem to live in fear of being called upon to get up in front of others in this way. However, by reviewing some key concepts, it is quite possible to make public speaking something to love, not dread. The article below should help.
Love your topic. To help you be able to talk confidently when speaking in front of others, choose a topic that you know a lot about. Include tidbits of information that is not commonly known to keep your audience engaged. Finally, speak in a conversational tone to help you remain calm and composed.
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.
Use YouTube to watch and view the masters of public speaking. Watch not only for their content, but also for their styles and habits. Pay close attention to famous moments and replicate such mannerisms sparingly for specific effect. Watch speeches of your favorite presidents or other national leaders, as you can find videos going back decades.
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.
You want your visual aids to be attractive, but not distracting. You want them to enhance what you are saying. You don’t want them to take over. To make important points, make sure your visual aids are high quality. They should be easy on the eye and look great but not take the focus away from your speech.
Consider your appearance. The audience is not likely to listen to you when your state of dress or grooming skills are distracting. Consider your audience when you think about what you are going to wear. Suits work well in for most speeches, but consider something more casual when speaking to younger audiences.
Reconsider having a few drinks to loosen yourself up. You may be so nervous before the speech or at such a fun event that you drink a little too much. Some of the most embarrassing speeches are the fault of having a little too much to drink before making the speech.
If you plan to give multiple speeches within a short period of time, take care to protect your vocal cords. A hoarse or inaudible voice is not likely to sway audience members’ opinions. Sleep with a humidifier in your room, sip hot tea, and drink plenty of water throughout the day.
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 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.
Take the time to practice in front of a mirror. this can help you see how you look as you are speaking. Then you can try different approaches until you find on that seems right to you. This can help you have a better idea of how you look to the audience who will be watching you.
Try watching professional public speakers. You can learn a lot from people that are famous for their public speaking abilities. Take note of how they speak and how they engage the audience. Figure out what it is that makes them successful. Try incorporating some of their habits and styles in your own speeches.
Know who you will be delivering the speech to and prepare accordingly. Every group of people has different expectations of you. For instance, colleagues will expect your speech to teach them something. Family and friends want entertainment. By knowing your audience, you can deliver a speech with the information they want to hear.
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.
Be sure to practice public speaking out loud. It may sound simple, but a lot of people tend to practice in their head. They speak the words internally instead of speaking out loud. This can cause all sorts of issues the day of your speech. Get used to hearing your voice, so it doesn’t throw you.
To become a more skilled public speaker, you must omit certain words and phrases from your vocabulary. Starting a sentence with the word “actually” conveys surprise or submissiveness. Never use the phrase “I just think” in your speeches. This expression communicates weak authority, and audience members will perceive that you lack conviction.
Lots of folks hate the idea of having to speak to a group. But, armed with the information presented in the piece above, nobody should worry too much the next time the need does arise. Refer to these materials often, and speaking to groups will become easier than it ever seemed possible.