I created Ace the Presentation to share relevant tips and counsel with all those seeking to improve their public speaking & presentation skills, other relevant soft skills, and those with the ambition of quickly growing as entrepreneurs, managers, pretty much those who will become leaders of the next generation.
So here's the deal, my main idea is to make sure you can become an emotionally..
For most people, their first time
addressing a crowd can be so scary and they tend to feel nervous or Jittery. My
first time facing the crowd was quite an experience for me. I got on the stage
and felt like I needed the ground to open up and take me in. One of the most
difficult aspect for me was looking at the crowd, making eye contact, and look
confident. I could not! It always felt like there were a million eyes
boring my soul.
Over the years, however, I learned that the reason I was not being able to properly convey the message I wanted was because my fear was noticed obviously and that made me a laughing stock for some, and an unreliable source of information for others. If only I could have easily found a way to improve myself in making eye contact, while speaking, and was confident about it, it would have been a different story.
Making eye contact, though tactical is a
very essential key for any speaker to defeat the dominance of the crowd.
Through bold eye contact in a presentation, your audience have faith in you
much more than you do yourself.
The term eye contact is rather vague, it can infer to just making fleeting contact with a person and then moving on. I want you to know that this is not what I would like to discuss today, I want to discuss about how you while speaking in public ensure that you are making eye contact and connecting with the audience.
Don’t just make eye contacts, make EYE
CONNECTION. Eye connection means spending time with each person so that the
person feels you are talking to them. Now I said eye connection not stare the
You might feel you want to make a one on
one person talk hereby making the rest of the audience disappear in your mind
eye. But remember you don’t want to creep the person and the rest of the
audience out in the process. The reality is the audience will always be
Eye connection has mutual benefit to you
and your audience. People in the audience will feel you have genuinely
connected with them and you care about their reaction, whether or not they
understand it. Also, because you are talking to people at intervals, connecting
one on one with each member of the audience, they will see you as
conversational and will be eager to listen to you more and be willing to be
If there is one simple thing in which you can use to enhance your impact as a presenter and convince or persuade your audience to see things and understand your point the way you do, it is meaningful and consistent eye contact with your audience. It helps you build positive rapport with your audience and helps you communicate and convey your message on a personal level.
A room full of people with different lightning, sounds and snickering can rack up your nerves but when you deliberately focus on the eyes of different members of the audience, it helps calm your nerves and speak confidently. You will also find out you are concentrating on your message.
When you look at someone for three to
five seconds, you will naturally find out that your speech slows down and you
are explaining better and sound more authoritative in your speech.
With sustained and focused eye contact
comes authority, the audience will believe not that you know what you are
saying. This can’t be compared to someone who averts his or her gaze
anytime they are trying to talk to you. Unlike this, good eye connection
communicates confidence and fosters a good relationship between you and your
audience even if you are not an expert on your present topic.
What if I am afraid of Making Eye Contact? (My Personal Struggle)
Well, Rome wasn’t built in day. So, you shouldn’t expect to become an assertive presenter right off the bat. It takes time, practice, and willingness to improve yourself.
I was 16 years old when my
mentor suddenly told me to stand up in front of dozens of people and present a
topic which taught me over the previous months. I was knowledgeable about the
topic, but amongst those seated in the crowd there were people who knew a lot
more about that topic than I did, I was inexperienced, had no confidence, and
was really worried about slipping up or biting my tongue in the process.
If I were to try and describe all the emotions I felt at that very moment, I would probably not find enough words, but the thing is looking at them in the eye was way out of my league, I had other concerns and honestly, I was really afraid to even speak in front of the crowd, let alone making eye contact.
Do you want to know what
happened that day, and the next few days where my mentor insisted that I
delivered speeches on several topics? I got brain freeze, stuttered, trembled,
would deliver long-winded speeches with no logical sequence, but always kept
asking questions to my mentor on how to improve on several aspects of speech
When it came to eye contact, which was one of the most difficult things to master, as I was really timid in my early teens, he taught me a trick. “If you cannot make eye contact with the audience, then look at their foreheads, keep looking around and cover the whole room, from right to left, left to right, up and down if need be. Make them feel like you are looking at all of them.”
Obviously, I took this advice and applied it in all subsequent speech delivery engagements that he arranged, and after about 3 months, I was now making real eye contact, enjoying sharing the little knowledge that I had acquired, and really feeling the engagement and positive feedback just from making eye contact with my audience. It’s a great feeling, and it allows you to adjust your speech, tone, pace, and so on based on the reactions that you get.
That little teen was now capable of speaking in front of others more confidently, and make meaningful eye contact with the audience and gauge the reception, interest, and satisfaction levels.
How do you improve your eye contact?
This might prove difficult to some people especially if it is your first time facing the crowd. With eye contact comes confidence, if you can build your confidence, then you can build your eye contact. Likewise, if you can start by making eye contacts with your audience, your confidence will naturally increase. Here are ways in which your eye contact or rather, eye connection can be improved.
Listen to your audience: a lot of people had the same
experience as myself the first time.
Most times all we
see is a blur of faces in the audience and that tends to shake our nerves.
Learn to see people, and by people, I mean individual audience members. It
makes you calmer. See your audience as individual listeners and try to make
connections with them personally. Ensure eye contact as you deliver all
critical lines. Look from one audience member briefly to another. Let
them feel you notice and connect with them.
For a start, look
at one member and imagine the person is the only one in the room. It’s
called shrinking the audience. For few seconds focus on just that one person
and have a one on one conversation with that person, you will begin to feel
less nervous, then you move on to another member. Take note, for a few seconds.
Don’t stare! This always creeps the audience out. No one likes to be
stared at oddly.
2. Involve everyone: the key here is to connect with as
many people as possible. Though it is impractical when you are dealing
with a large audience. Endeavour to cover each section of the crowd in such
cases. You can choose a member from each section to connect with. Don’t
follow a pattern but rather connect randomly otherwise you might look
unnatural. It takes not more than five seconds to accomplish a connection.
There is minimal risk if you follow this pattern and it helps you control your
3. Move to another person at an appropriate time: it’s impossible to start counting 5
seconds in your head while trying to give a presentation. So how do you know
how long you have connected with a person. You can keep track using your
sentences. Most times, by the time you finish your sentences, you find
the particular audience nodding in understanding. If you are one who loves the
use of long sentences, then you should make use of phrases to tab yourself and
work on making your sentences shorter so it wouldn’t be difficult for the
audience to understand what you are saying.
In a presentation, the presenter adds
formatting in the way he or she delivers, the presenter makes use of verbal
formatting. The same way a document has paragraphs and full stops is the
same way a presenter should use it to time himself or herself.
Also, while doing this, don’t be
systemic with it. Don’t be a lighthouse presenter who just looks right and left
automatically, be random and unpredictable when making eye contact with the
audience. Mix it up, be random! Always notice the reaction of your audience,
once a member you are connecting with starts to nod, then you are rest assured
that you are communicating well with your audience. However, be sure to
highlight key points with strong eye contacts. This draws their attention closer to
4. Avert your eyes when making someone
your audience, there will definitely be people who don’t do well with
connection. Especially the shy ones. They tend to avert their eyes
anytime you look at them, in this case you are making them uncomfortable.
Nevertheless, this doesn’t mean you ignore them totally. You still glance
at them once in a while to make them feel noticed an important. Different
cultures have different norms regarding eye contact so respect them by spending
less eye connection with them.
5. Meet audience members before the
most speakers have poor eye contact especially at the beginning of their
presentation and might not properly see their audience members. In cases
like this, meet up with your members before the presentation starts and relate
with them personally so that when you eventually start, at least you will have
some of them on your side. But nevertheless, still glance randomly from
one section to another or look at a member randomly.
6. Prepare for your presentation more: Most speakers tend to pause at intervals
and look at the ceiling or outer space to remember their lines or a particular
point and they tend to disconnect from their audience at this point. Prepare
more so you will spend more energy talking than thinking.
When you are well prepared you will look less at your note and more at the audience. Likewise, when a speaker tends to concentrate on a member for the duration of the sentence he or she is trying to elaborate, there is a tendency that when you end the sentence you will want to look at your note again. This is also one of the essence of preparation. If you have to look at your book then try pausing a bit and look at the rest of your audience at the end of the sentence you make before glancing at your book again. When you lift your head again, pick another member of the audience to connect with.
There is so much more I would have liked to discuss with you about this
topic. But I believe that we have laid out some of the key things you have to
be aware of when it comes to making eye contact.
Not all men are equal, nor all presenters and public speakers, I would
advise against trying to copy/emulate one specific speaker, instead it will
prove much more productive to you if you try your best to sound natural.
Being shy or lacking the confidence to speak in front of others, does
not equate to not being able make eye contact effectively. As a matter of fact,
we engage in making eye contact in our daily conversations with family and
friends, and if we are to consider speaking in front of others an extension of
such conversations than we can definitely make real eye connections with our
There a lot of people pondering and wondering. How do I become a motivational speaker? What steps do I take? I want to inspire people? How do I do it? I wish I could speak eloquently and help people, how do I go about becoming a great role model, an inspiration for others?
Pointers for those Seeking to Become a Motivational Speaker
Motivational speaking isn’t just about speaking to the crowd. I mean, anyone can do that. It is about connecting to the audience, buying their trust, it is about problem-solving. Now that you want to start your journey on being a motivational speaker, there are things you should know.
Niche Down & Know Your Audience
A motivational speaker
doesn’t just speak on any topic. He or she must be versed and grounded in a
specialized field. The more grounded he is, the more confident and
broader he will go.
A motivational speaker’s
field can be on business, relationship, value, life’s worth, building self-esteem,
e. t.c. Always try to narrow down your niche, identify the groups you really
want to address so you can create contents that will resonate with them.
Not only should a speaker know his field, but you must also put your audience in first. They could be university undergraduates, graduates, elderlies, couples, businessmen, entrepreneurs, etc. It wouldn’t go well with a motivational speaker if he has to be talking about the essence of love with entrepreneurs.
Some audience needs the
assurance that they aren’t alone in their problems. If you can deliver
your speech in a way that they can relate, and easily be able to trust the
words from your motivational speech, then you would have done an excellent job
in establishing a connection with them.
A motivational speaker can connect through his audience a lot through eye contact and confidence. Your approach, confidence, mannerisms say a lot to the audience. Being a motivational speaker, you must know and believe in what you are saying. You should bear in mind that you satisfy the needs of the audience; therefore you should pinpoint specific probable questions that could be lurking on the mind of the audience, ask them and answer them.
Diversify your Skills &
Most motivational speakers are always good at presentation and marketing skills because they have to be able to convince their audience. This should be noted as a mandatory talent for a motivational speaker. A speaker who can’t convince his audience has lost his motivating skills.
As a motivational speaker,
you must develop your speaking, marketing, and business skills as this will be
a huge benefit for you in the field. It is very crucial for anybody that wants
to be a motivational speaker to be a good reader of books and also have an
oratory skill or smooth talker as most will say in lame language.
A motivational speaker’s work is to travel all around the world,
presenting new approaches or sometimes even using his life’s experience in the
field of work. Though not all motivational speakers, especially beginners get
funded enough to travel around the world. They can, however, make use of
their social media networking. Most motivational speaker’s don’t
have to travel to get to their audience, some do this by creating short,
captivating video clips that pinpoint on the topic.
At some point, the
audience hangs on your every word as a truth which could change their lives.
Hence, they must be interested in your experience, strategies and what you have
to offer. Think thoroughly on what you want to tell your audience, don’t stop
there, do your research, ask people, especially those who are more
experienced: the experts.
The audience also has
interests in speakers who happen to be more creative, give
examples, tell stories and give vivid representations. Your presentations
must be original and captivating, the audience must be able to relate to it and
find solutions from it.
All this still falls back to the fact that a speaker must be well developed in his speaking prowess, and be always curious and explore the world. If you find out that you aren’t so good at speaking, it isn’t the end of the road, there are classes you can go to develop your creativity and speech likewise. The art of convincing is the tool of a motivational speaker with which you can shape the heart of the audience.
Overcome Stage Fright &
Better Connect with Your Audience
Public speaking classes also help to develop your stage management skills and even your confidence. It helps to build your behavior on the stage. A speaker’s voice should never shake on stage, that portrays weakness. The way a speaker moves and acts on stage also should go along with his words and overall message. When you need to drive a point home, your voice should rise gradually carrying the audience along with you. When you have made your point you lower your voice and pause to let your point drive home. These are some of the lessons a motivational speaker learns in classes he or she takes.
Jay Danzie quoted:
Your smile is your logo, your personality is your business card, how you leave others feeling after having an experience with you becomes your trademark.
As a speaker, you must be
able to keep your audience at ease, smile more. Your message can still be
passed across with a smile. Let your personality be worth listening to as a
speaker. A motivational speaker should also learn the art of humor. It reduces
the tension and adds to the effect of your motivational speaking. Always make
sure, you leave your audience better than how you met them.
4. I guess you are wondering ‘Where to start?’
Small beginnings help you foster your strengths and practice makes perfect they say. Look for small and local outlets and activities where you can speak to people. Start small, be it from your religious congregation place, children departments to your youth forums.
It doesn’t have to be long, a few minutes will do and have people record you. Watch it later and rate yourself judging from the audience responses. If you are opportune, send secretly for reviews through the usage of questioners asking for the people’s opinion of your lectures or speech.
Be on the lookout for conferences, events, and forums where you can speak or address people. Network and look for people in the same field as yours and study where they speak and how they go about it.
Don’t be an island, explore! Ask! Learn from experts. Apply for opportunities. Reach out to event planners and ask them to inform you on different gigs you could perform. The more events you perform, the more people will ask of you.
It is hard to start a
career in this field as the most successful and popular motivational speakers
are mostly recommended. You, therefore, have to be unique in your style and
work harder if you found a passion for it. But you can make yourself and your
work known through social media like I earlier stated. The better developed you
become, the more recommended you could also be. You just have to apply a dose
Take your time,
promote yourself and you could even start a blog. Let people know your
credibility and your worth, make a difference, and you never know, you
could exceed your expectations. If you inspire thousands or millions
online, more people will want to hear from you.
Plan, Revise and Ensure Your
Speeches are Memorable
As a speaker, always make sure you revise your contents. When you have written a well-developed speech, always take time to revise it for unclear points and errors that could occur. Also, the timing for a speaker is very essential, the speech you have written should be within the allotted time you are given.
I insist, plan ahead by timing yourself and making sure your content is within the stipulated time. Expand every detail that seems unclear and doesn’t sound right to you. Keep at it till you are confident of your time management prowess.
If you are allowed 20 minutes, keep your speech to 15 minutes, so you don’t run over. Revising shouldn’t be done a day, rather as often as possible before the time comes so that by then you will be more confident in your work and it would have become a part of you.
Test yourself, it can be
painful sometimes to hear yourself speak and your mind overcriticizes yourself
more and in other cases not really see what you are hoping for. In such cases,
watch videos of other motivational speakers, and compare it to yours.
You can show it to others
and ask for their opinions also. Trust me it helps. From this, you notice where
you slacked when you were to stand firm, where you bent or swayed, your
blunders, strength, and weaknesses.
You may be aiming to become
a motivational speaker to genuinely help others, to leave a legacy, or even to
make a career out of it. Regardless of your chose pathway, I believe that you
stand only to gain by practicing and improving your speaking skills.
The more your speaking
career grows, the less you will need to apply for opportunities as they
will come for you. And eventually, the more you develop yourself and the
more credibility you portray, you will start being called up for higher paying
Thank you for reading this far, I hope you found it helpful. I will be writing a second part for this blog post, share your comments, questions, and be sure to come back to check part II in the next few weeks.
There are several types of speech one can use to deliver a message, to sell an idea, to persuade, or impart knowledge to the intended audience. What are these types of speech, when to use them, and perhaps give you some insights on which types of speech should be used based on the occasion, the audience, and the desired result?
If you are curious to know what types of speech best fit your intended audience or message that you want to pass across, then I strongly believe that this post will be of interest to you.
PUBLIC SPEAKING & INTENDED RESULT OF YOUR SPEECH
The art of giving a speech is usually performed before a large or small audience, like in a school, the workplace or even a personal gathering. We give speeches everyday and it could take many forms depending on the types of speech that we are delivering.
Whether it be to encourage our friends and colleagues at the office or to convince a client to buy our products. The advantages and benefits of knowing how to properly give a speech or even just communicate to an audience are endless, it is an art form that requires the sharpening of ones thinking capacity and verbal/ non verbal communication skills.
Reflect back to those times where you had
to stand in front of a bunch of people and talk about something. It could be as
simple as an oral report of an assignment in school or as complicated and
demanding as a proposal at work. After you were able to gather all your
materials and prepared yourself well, getting up to the podium and dish it all
out was the next logical step.
The success or failure of those public speaking experiences or speeches is all a result of how much you have sharpened your public speaking skills. It is important to sharpen your skills and knowledge of speech giving because the art is not quite the same as talking to a crowd of People. There is a way information is conveyed in speeches, and that is what makes it stand apart from just regular talking to people.
When it comes to giving speeches it all comes down to who is saying what, to whom, using what medium with what effect. Simply put, who is the exact source of the information? What is the message or information itself? Who is the audience, while the medium of communication is actually the delivering method being used by the speaker, then it all ends in an effect.
You can think of the desired effect as the speaker’s intentions for making the speech. Knowing exactly why and to whom you will deliver the speech helps you navigate and select the best out of the different types of speech, and use proper techniques to ensure your speech is relatable, engaging, and memorable.
TEN DIFFERENT TYPES OF SPEECH
The idea behind demonstrative speech is
basically to educate the audience that is listening on something they are not
aware of. The unique thing about demonstrative speeches is that they could
include various visual aids which can help further demonstrate or describe in
practicable terms how to effectively do something. At first glance, one can say
that demonstrative speech is more like informative, but the difference is in
the fact that informative speeches do not exactly include actual demonstrating
of how to do or perform an act.
Imagine that you will give a speech on how to write a blog post, how to sell clothes online, how to fish successfully, or even how to build a house, these can all be considered as demonstrative speeches.
If you’re wondering how to go about getting
a speech like demonstrative speech started, the best way is to start by asking
your self critical questions like how or why or what is. These questions will
help start the process of creating a power demonstrative speech. Also, as you
must know already, a demonstrative speech can not be considered one with out
the use of visual aid to help support the process of demonstration.
A great example of demonstrative speeches
nowadays are the ones delivered by Apple, and other companies when they are
unveilling their latest flaship smartphones, or any other product.
Entertaining speech is quite a common or should I say a familiar one amognst the types of speech in our contemporary society. If you have ever been to a birthday party or wedding, which I know you most certainly must have, then you have experienced what an entertaining speech is like. The main purpose of a best man’s speech in a wedding or an after dinner MC is to entertain the crowd. This form of entertainment is usually done by using interesting illustrations, hilarious stories, and just flat out humor.
Entertaining speeches are usually quite
short and are basically for the purpose of entertaining the audience. You may
think it is a simple task to give an entertaining speech, but in reality it
actually is not. One must master being witty and humorous to be considered a
good entertaining speaker. So before you think of jumping on a podium and
giving one of those entertaining speeches don’t forget to brush up on some of
your jokes and stories.
Informative speeches are speeches mainly
performed for the purpose of educating the audience on new or relevant piece of
information on a particular topics.
To convey this information, informative
speech givers do not make use of visual aids in their speeches but rather make
us of facts, statistics, educative information and data, all this so that the
audience can learn something and say they have been informed on the topic.
A good example of an informative speech is
the one you get form your tour guide when going on a tour of a museum. The tour
guide carefully and critically details out certain information about the
objects in the museum as he or she takes you around. Therefore, any time a
speech is given to give the audience details or information on a particular
topics, this can be considered as an informative speech.
When giving an informative speech, the
speaker is expected to present statistics and facts about the topics to back is
claims and assertions. Informative speech topics can range from social and economic
changes in our community to climate change and how it affects our world today.
So, the next time you hear someone dishing
out facts, stats and critical information on a certain topic be sure to note
that he or she is giving the audience an informative speech.
A persuasive speech is a speech given
solely for the purpose of convincing the audience listening that the opinion of
the speaker on a particular topic is the right or correct one. Wether you are
discussing on what movie to watch next
or which political stand point is best for the economy, you are making a
In order to successfully convince an
audience, most speakers tend to use concrete evidence and facts to back up
their argument. The use of those various facts makes their own argument seem
more sensible and believable, thereby persuading the audience to stand with
them and support their claim. This is one of the best ways to ensure your
persuasive speech is very effective, by giving solid facts you can easily get
the audience to rally around you and give you their support.
A close example of a persuasive speech is
one a lawyer gives to the jury in order to convince them to stand with him on
the case at hand and vote in his favor. Another good example is one that a
presidential candidate give in form of his campaign speech in order to convince
the citizen to vote him or her as the next president of the country.
Persuasive speeches, depending on the
topic, can also be built around emotions and feelings of the speaker and how
they resonate with the audiences; If you are trying to convince people to raise
fundings to a cause, to help children, elderly,
oppressed women, and so on. The facts are a must, but ultimately in
these situations appealing to the audience emotion should yield better results.
I have another post discussing in detail
how to deliver persusive speeches and I also shared some ideas for persuasive
speech topics, be sure to check it out.
Oratorical speeches are a type of speech that is delivered in the style used by an orator. Its name and definition are quite humorous because orator and oratorical both relate to the act of giving a speech.
These type of speech is usually given on very special occasions like a graduation ceremony, inauguration or ribbon cutting event. This type of speech can take shape in two distinct forms, they can be long and quite formal in situations like funerals, graduations, and inaugurations, or they can be short and informal in situations like the speech given during a toast in a special event.
There are various events and places where
one can give an oratorical speech like a birthday party, retirement party,
coming out party and a bunch of others. Political speeches are usually
considered as oratorical speeches, especially when they are not used to settle
an argument but rather to preach virtue and appeal to common basic truths.
Although in oratorical speeches the speaker
given the speech is not necessarily trying to persuade the audience on a
particular matter but as fairly general as they are in nature, oratorical
speeches can still address certain issues. Arguably the best and most common
example of a oratorical speech is an inauguration speech. It contains all the
true elements that makes a good oratorical speech.
Special occasion speech
Special occasion speeches are speeches that
don’t exactly fall into any particular category of speech. Hence, the name
special occasion. They can include speeches that are given to introduce a
speaker or announce the arrival of a guest. They are designed to be short but
interesting and direct to the point.
Another good example of special occasion speeches is a tribute speech given to pay tribute to a person whether they are dead or alive. An award acceptance speech is also another form of special occasion speech, it is given solely to appreciate the audience for the award and Express how much it means to you.
These special occasion speeches are
designed to be short, around ten minute, straight to the point and somewhat
mood setting in nature. Most times, special occasion speeches are upbeat and
fun, you can easily just go online and find out how to get started on your own
little special event.
Writing speeches for special events are
usually the easiest as they do not require statistics, demanding need for
information and knowledge, just a simple couple of lines could do the trick for
One can consider the motivational speech as a special type of speech in which the general self-improvement of the audience is the goal to be attained. A speaker generally engages in this type of speech to encourage and inspire the confidence of his audience to do better with and for themselves.
These types of speeches can be found in
situations like the office where the boss is talking to his employees, trying
to inspire them to put in more effort to get the job done or a football match
where the coach is trying to motivate his players to give the match everything
they got so as win and be crowned champions.
These speeches are great to motivate people, to inspire them and uplift their self-esteem. There are certain techniques used in given out motivation speech in order for them to yield the best result.
Examples of motivational speeches are seen
in schools, whereby teachers try to encourage students to put in extra work and
do better in order to improve their grades and overall records.
Motivational speeches are important in
society, it is the best way to move a crowd of people towards achieving a
certain goal. They can be given to inspire people to fight for a cause in
society or their various local communities.
Explanatory speech is one of the types of speech which is given to critically explain a situation or thing. They are somewhat similar in nature to the demonstrative speech. However, the explanatory speech is different from the demonstrative speech in the sense that the explanatory speech gives a detailed step by step and breaks down of how to do something. It is also different in the sense that it does not make use of visual aid to assist in understanding.
The explanatory speech simply just details the step by step to get the know how on any task or subject. A good example of explanatory speech is the one being given by a speaker on a food talk show, explaining the step by step procedures to make various dishes or the witness explaining how an event took place.
During the cause of a formal debate event,
there is a lot of verbal exchanges being made by the two or more parties
involved. This act of debating takes shape in many forms in our contemporary
society. These forms include the following; classical, impromptu, parliamentary,
mock trails, extemporaneous and even public forum.
As the normal standard in a general debate, all sides are given an equal amount of time to give a speech on how why they think their opinion or view on a certain matter is the right one. Debates are not quite like persuasive speeches, because rather than trying to convince the other side to join you on your side, you are simply trying to justify why you are of an opinion on a certain matter.
Debates have certain rules, regardless of
what side of the argument you pick, both or all parties get equal amount of
time to prepare for it. Being a debater you get to develop and harness certain
skills like public speaking, researching, initiative skills and even leadership
10. Forensic speech
The term forensic speech is mainly regarded as the practice and study of public speaking and debating. This definition is from the American Forensic Association, and they believe according to their research that millions of high school students and college students engage in this activity.
The reason why this type of speech is
called forensic is because of its strong similarities to the competitions at
public forums during the the time of ancient Greece.
This event can take place in a simple place like a classroom or in a more sophisticated setting like a national or international event. During the activity, students are advised to research and improve their speaking skills in order to learn other types of speeches.
The art of public speaking or giving a
speech is all embedded in ones understanding and mastery of the different types
of speech. As a public speaker, you have to know what occasion deserves what
type of speech.
You first have to consider your message and
how you what to deliver it, then on a more important note you have to consider
the desired outcome or effect you want your speech to have. It could either be
to persuade your audience to stand with you on a particular matter like
government policy or Social structure
to something as light as mere entertainment at a dinner party.
Having the ability to speak in public effortlessly and with charisma is a trait and quality every individual in society should desire. And with the proper understanding of these various types of speeches, as well as the techniques required for each, your abilities as a public speaker are only going to grow, and you will continue to impress and amaze your audiences.
Thank you so much for reading this far, I really appreciate it and would love to hear from you. What types of speech would you love to get more insights on?
REFERENCES & FURTHER READING
9 Different types of Speeches (Plus Tips and Examples for Each)
Before we delve into communication skills,
and how you can and should be improving them, let us first address the basic definition of communication. Communication
in simple terms can simply be defined as
the act of transferring information from one
place to another or, from one person to another. There are many forms of
communication, such as verbal (words of mouth), written (in written or printed
format or digital media, and non-verbal (through the use of body language, the
tone, and pitch of voice and gestures).
Communication is part of our daily lives because whether we are conscious of it or not we are always communicating whether through our gestures or spoken words. The importance of excellent communication skills cannot be overemphasized as by possessing the ability to communicate information accurately, clearly and as intended will only add on to your arsenal as a person/professional. There is no such thing as ‘it’s too late to start working on your communication skills,’ and by doing so, you get to improve your lifestyle in general.
7 Examples of communication skills to master:
1. Active listening
Active listening refer is the situation
whereby close attention is being given to the person that is conveying the
message to you. Co-workers provide an excellent recommendation to active listeners
due to the amount of respect and attention they give other people. This skill
might seem simple, but this is a skill
that can most times be difficult to acquire and improve on. Being an active listener means focusing on the
speaker and avoiding any form of distractions that may occur during the
To add further, it would also help if you
developed the habit of speaking only after you truly understood what the other
person wanted to convey to you. If you are not sure about the full meaning and
intent of the message you just received, just ask them politely, and ensure
there are no misunderstandings.
Your relationship with others matter a lot
as qualities like honesty and kindness tend to develop
a quick, trustworthy and understanding
between you and others. These qualities are essential
wherever you find yourself. Little gestures such as checking up on someone’s
wellbeing and giving them a smile as they speak or praising a job well done by
them can help generate healthy relationships with colleagues as well as
Be genuine and eager to build relationships
with others, learn more about them, and have them learn more about you. Find some common ground, something that you share with
each other, some interest in common, past experience, and start from there. If you feel like
there’s no common ground, don’t worry. Just remember, you are both sharing the
same space/workplace/school/building and so on.
3. Make sure you adapt your communication style to suit your audience
If you intend to have others understand what you are about to convey, then making use of a communication style or means through which your intended audience can easily adapt to is the best way to go. For one to make use of their communication skills properly, it’s necessary for one to consider their intended audience to know the format that will be more effective to use while communicating with them.
4. Clarity and volume
While you’re speaking, it’s necessary for
you to be audible to enable your audience to hear you well.
The ability to adjust the voice of speech for you to be heard
in a different setting is a skill on its own. It is critical to effective
When your speaking voice is too loud, it
may seem too disrespectful to your audience, and
this is not a good way to achieve effective communication.
When it’s too low, then obviously you make your audience get frustrated for
trying hard and still failing to hear the words
coming out of your mouth.
5. Giving and receiving feedback
Feedback should be able to provide answers
to questions, solve a problem or provide meaningful ideas to the situation on
the ground. It does not come easy for some
people to get used to giving
constructive feedback, and unfortunately,
they miss out on one of the most useful communication skills, especially in
organizations where such continuous and valuable
feedback can have an incredible effect on operations, quality assurance, and
the bottom line.
Ability to share and understand others
emotion is a critical skill. You will be able to better understand other people’s
emotion and, at the same time, be able to
provide a suitable response by mastering this skill. For example, if someone is
feeling down, you will be able to know
through his or her reactions, and you
will come up with something to cheer the person up.
In any form of gathering the ability to
allow others to speak without unnecessary interruptions is an instrumental skill that is attached to
respect. An essential aspect of respect
is your ability to know or realize when to initiate a conversation and when to
Examples of Life Situations where Communication Skills Are
As I mentioned before, Communication skills
are essential for all parts of life:
On a professional level, when you are seeking jobs or expecting a promotion at your place of work, one of the critical competitive advantages that you want to possess is excellent communication skills. Communication skills are highly required to speak appropriately to a large number of people with different backgrounds while maintaining good eye contact, channel your language to the audience and demonstrate a good vocabulary, listen attentively, properly table your ideas, provide concise and clear writing, and perform well in a group.
Undoubtedly, these skills are amongst the ones that most employers seek from their employees. The importance of communication skills increases as there is progress in your career. For most managers and leaders, the ability to communicate; combining speaking, writing, and listening is vital. I have a separate article about communication skills for the workplace with really cool tips, check it out.
Good communication skills are capable of having a positive effect on
your personal relationships by
helping you to understand what others are trying to say and at the same time be
understood. Personal relationships need
communication. Failure to communicate well has led to the breakdown of a large
number of relationships, what the people
involved fail to realize is that
listening ability is essential and a
Communication is also an essential factor in extended families,
whether you want to discuss plans for a celebration or holiday, or ensure that
the family is well and okay. One with communication skills has an advantage in
the handling of organizations and business transactions.
In this life, you will at some point come in contact with and also interact with various organizations and institutions of different categories such as businesses, government offices, shops, and schools. Having proper communication skills can make these interactions easier, and would guarantee that your message is being delivered to the intended destination and in the right way.
If you are
sending the information, then you will need to start the communication process,
ask questions to see if your listeners are flowing with you. Attention must not
be paid to the replies of the listener, your main aim is to pass information.
If you are in the position to receive the
message, you should listen attentively and check to see if you understand the
message the sender is trying to pass.
Now, if you are on a conversation then,
more than anything your listening skills, and respectful attitude towards your
audience, or the person who is speaking to you will be the most important communication skills you will use to
ensure that you understand others well enough to provide valuable feedback and insights into the conversation.
Constant practice and experience can help
you develop excellent communication
skills, but most importantly you will
need to identify your strength and capitalize on it with consistent practice
in order to develop it. In order to
improve your communication skills you can try to put some of the following:
helps to improve communication habits
Communication skills are habits you have
nurtured over time. There is room for improvement in those skills by adopting these new habits will make you
communicate better. This includes having high response during communication
periods when they are passed across, maintaining eye contact, giving positive
feedback is essential and also asking questions.
Attend communication skills workshops or classes
Many mediums can help you to become a better communicator such as online and offline seminars, classes and workshops. Instructions, role-play, written assignments and open discussions are the contents of these classes that are designed to improve your communication skills. Check out my post on top free online public speaking classes for some ideas.
Learn to look out for opportunities to communicate
Anything that requires you to make use of
your communication skills should be looked out for. This way you will be able
to practice and master new skills and become conversant with them. They will
become part of you.
Communication skills can also influence how one learns
You master how to engage in public speaking
through conversations we create, answering various questions and giving your
thoughts and opinions. Many prominent and
successful organizations in the world are well aware that good communication in
all areas is critical if they are to
attain high heights in the business world of today. Here’s a list of some benefits that can be achieved by
organizations through effective communication, they are as follows;
Upturn in productivity
Compelling corporate materials
The workflow will be more precise and more streamlined
Sound business relationships
Successful response ensured
Decision making will be strong
THE BOTTOM LINE
Communication is required for everything we
do in this life. There can’t be a life without communication,
such life will be meaningless. Your
ability to communicate and understand people makes you a better person, a man
who can speak several languages of different countries is considered an asset
or a famous person because he is capable
of blending into such society without anyone noticing where he is truly from.
During our lifetime, we will meet a lot of people who do not know how to communicate and pass their messages even if you both speak the same language, they might be saying one thing and mean another thing. Unfortunately, the way we speak sometimes defines who we are. And we can lose out on a lot of opportunities if we can not effectively express ourselves and showcase our true value.
Through the exchange of information, you can build trust and respect, align actions, execute plans and strategies, and ultimately improve bottom-line performance. I am sharing below 12 communication skills for the workplace, they are effective communication skills required of every employee, especially from a leader.
You have someone whom you think of when we consider exquisite leaders; be it a colleague, a political figure or someone in a position of leadership. No matter who these people are, they all have specific characteristics that differentiate them.
The secret to standing out is the fundamental principles of effective leadership communication that foster collaboration and success in the workplace. Everyone can take charge but needs the right tools and skills to be the best.
12 Communication Skills for the Workplace to help you better lead others
The primary principle of
effective leadership communication is the ability of you to inspire
others. As a leader, you’ve got a vision
of the success you want to reap with the assistance of your group. It’s up to you to unite
your group around this purpose and assist them to adopt their vision. Inspiration
is the fuel that aids everyone working hard to attain the final goal, and remarkable leaders comprehend it.
Think back to those great
leaders we remember before, and I bet you know at least some inspirational
quotes attributed to them. Inspiration is the motivation behind success.
Inspire greatness today to succeed tomorrow.
to know yourself and Learn to deal with Constructive
Good communication begins with
a place of self-awareness. When you communicate with other people, you must be
aware of your inner monologue so that you do not put a bad mood in another
person. Employees monitor their managers closely – even when you have received bad
information, act reasonably.
When you are leading other people, they are expected to
follow you, to perhaps learn from you, be inspired and coached by you for them to grow and to reach the common goal/vision that was set at the
beginning of your journey together.
The thing is you, too, should be learning from them and growing your leadership skills, your interpersonal skills and being humble whenever you receive some constructive criticism. No one is perfect, and certainly, everyone needs to improve a thing or two. Accept the feedback, embrace it, and thank them for being open about it.
The vine of the employees is relatively speedy. Smile and say hey to all of the personnel
you see. Be humane and humble, sympathetic and empathic
to everyone around you.
Use those techniques to assist
your leaders to become top-notch communicators. Excellent
communication skills are vital for
leadership and business.
attention greater than you speak:
If you want to encourage open
and honest communication with your team, then learn and master active listening.
When someone talks to you, they really listen to what
you say. Ask follow-up questions to show that
you are attentive and to make sure there are not any communication issues.
Keep an open mind and focus on a thoughtful reaction to what they say and react
sensibly. This practice builds the connection and information among the
The most important communication capability for leaders is the ability to listen.
Professional listening skills include listening to the message, listening to any emotion behind the message, and reviewing relevant questions about the message.
Listening to the message means
listening to the facts accurately,
without prejudging or distracting yourself with other thoughts. It is also
important to hear any unusually strong stress in the phrases or other signs of
For example, below are some of the questions you can ask
as a leader when given a new
are you giving me this information?
If it’s for a new project, do I have the time
and resources to manage it?
Is it relevant to the company’s mission?
Is there additional information that I need to
understand the meaning of the message, as in the case of a potential conflict?
Encourage the other person to give ideas and solutions before giving up.
Make 80% of listening and 20% conversations.
Lead by example:
As a leader, you must illustrate the qualities you expect from your employees. Instead of
telling employees you want them, show them an example. Because leaders
are in a big role, they face
limitations with self-assurance, dedication, and a positive mindset when
placing the degree for the rest of the group.
Make sure you are the
first one to communicate effectively in the workplace, and that starts with the
vision, and the strategic objectives that you communicate to your teams. If you
show them how it’s done, it’s a lot easier to ask them to give that same
attention to communication at work.
High-quality communication comes from a knowledge of your audience, which is used to speak. Knowing your audience’s motivations, favored conversation patterns, gaining knowledge styles, and so forth, permits you to evolve your message and increase the chances of effective communication.
a personal connection facilitates empathy, reassures people, and builds trust.
(Just a warning: to be effective, personal
relationships must be genuine and not exploitative).
your media with care:
sure you consider your medium(s) carefully. It’s important to be able to send a
huge text or voice message to your
employees. These channels are appropriate to inform your team of a last-minute
meeting change, but it would not be to send the scope of a new project.
Identically, email isn’t always the first-class way to start a long conversation, particularly if it is a touchy topic. Learn to
study the state of affairs and pick the correct help. Effectively, the
proficiency of your information could be
When you tell a good tale, you carry a vision, goal or intention to life. Telling the right tales captures hearts and minds, and serves as a reminder of the vision. In
addition, people find it easier to repeat a story or to refer to an
image or quote than to speak about a vision statement, strategy document, or
I always emphasize that the ability to tell stories and use them effectively to engage or inspire your audience, or perhaps to make your speech memorable is critical to all managers, leaders and those interested in growing into leadership roles.
8. Build Trust & Be Consistent:
If people hear one thing and see another, their credibility skyrockets.
People need to trust you. Your actual characteristics, as well as actions,
convey an arena of fact. Be clear in the messages you send when you do not
speak a word. Consider your tone and direction. This
is especially important when talking to someone face to face.
When sending messages, remember what you are trying to achieve and how to
find it. For example, if a worker has no longer met a deadline, you want that person
to improve so that the problem is not repeated. Use a friendly tone with a corrective address.
You will get a lot more when you clarify your intentions and preserve morals in
straightforward, specific and clear
Clear communication increases the likelihood that people
will understand and act on
what you are looking for. It’s better to
explain something than to leave room for misunderstandings.
your thoughts with me and be straight.
Do not hide behind complexity and do not accumulate tons of information. Simple
communication can be intelligent communication.
When you perform a task or seek someone for help, focus on simple,
practical, and specific instructions. It is beneficial to prepare your mind in
advance to consist of all applicable details. Please
do not end the conversation until you are sure that every person
understands your goals and how to reach them.
Distribute these instructions in a friendly and open way so that every person knows
can ask additional questions.
positive and respectable
to be obvious; however, sadly, this is not always the case. Prioritizing
transparency, equity and admiration in the organization are one of the first-class strategies for
fostering loyalty and growing the effectiveness of the team.
Please do not maintain your prestige pertaining to other individuals. It’s about time we stop using coercion or worry as motivational factors.
Instead, focus on a sincere, positive,
and ego-free attitude toward every situation that occurs. Serving as a leader
instead of an autocrat helps to maintain morality and can even ease creativity
and effectively solve problems.
11. Always Compliment
People often work more
than what they are paid; they want to be seen and congratulated
for their work. Compliments are more effective if they are case-specific and in writing, so
they can be reread. For example:
“It was such a critical and complex report to put together, and tight
deadlines given by the customer, but you managed to complete it and ensure that every aspect of the
project meets its specifications, thanks for your attention to detail and your
pride in your business!”
“I observed that you took extra time to
make sure the brand new worker had an incredible first day and was very excited about the company and its tasks at the give up
of the day!”
Use this technique firstly among the leaders,
managers, or supervisors that serve you.
12. Empathy Goes a Long Way
This article discusses
communication skills for the workplace, but its main aim is to help fellow Humans
interact better, in positive and constructive way.
Listen to other people’s
opinions, advice, voices earnestly, and actively. Respect and try to really
process what you heard, paraphrase if need be, and give constructive feedback.
Being a leader is a lot more than just boss people around, or act like an egocentric child pretending to be an adult, and expecting everyone to agree with everything you say promptly. Open your mind to truly listen to other people’s feedback, internalize it and do your utmost best to become a better leader for them and raise them to one day lead their teams.
Each of the communication skills for the workplace shared in this post requires constant practice, and they can be applied in other areas of life as well. You will not master them in a day or even a year. Instead, you have to decide to practice these as life strategies.
A true leader is similar to a superhero; you can always count on them to support you and to save the day when things get tough. I
hope that you aspire to cause that effect on the people you lead or will lead
Thank you for reading this far, I genuinely hope you have found this article insightful, and would love to read your comments below.
Would you love to be able to convince, inspire, change peoples’ minds about something? Alternatively, perhaps you would like to bargain better, and become a powerful negotiator in your business, sales efforts, salary negotiation, fund raising, and so on. Well that is all possible if you master the techniques to deliver a persuasive speech laid out below.
The power of being persuasive is not possessed
by a lot of people. It takes a great deal of techniques to change the mentality
or belief of your audience with just mere words.
The importance of possessing the skill of
how to persuade can never be overemphasized. While an individual with little or
no skill might take several weeks to persuade you, an individual with
tremendous persuasive skills can easily persuade you on the same topic with
just one speech.
The reason why people use persuasive speech
is to inform, educate, and cajole or inspire an audience to engage or believe
in a particular thing.
PERSUASIVE SPEECH TECHNIQUES YOU SHOULD ADOPT
Have your goal in mind:
Since persuasive speech is
used in convincing an audience to engage or believe in something (more
strongly), then you should never fall in the traps below.
Do not just give insufficient
information about something. Also, do not invest too much of your time talking
about the history of a dispute, except if it aims at achieving your goal.
Do not just make complaints
about a particular thing. You should rather convince your audience to do
something about it if it is that bad.
Try your best to stay positive,
even when given the opportunity to talk badly about someone or something
Know your audience:
To learn how to persuade, you must be utterly ready to learn how to do audience analysis. This analysis aims at making you know who exactly is your audience, as well as what they want to hear. This will however be put into consideration when tailoring your persuasive speech to match their interests.
The ability to know who your audience is is incontestably one of the best persuasive skills any leader can possess. With this skill, you already know what your audience already knows and what they are game to know.
Place your emphasis on your
It is crucial to understand
that your mission is not to only pass your message across to a number of
people, but to also change their mentality immediately after the message is
passed across. For this reason, one of the persuasive skills you have to
develop is the ability to make your audience feel as if their opinions and
needs are profoundly cared for.
You should learn to talk to
your audience, rather than talking at your audience – this is a critical
technique to ensure your persuasive speech can have a desired effect on your
Start building credibility
right from your introduction:
This is not necessarily
considered when talking about persuasive skills because it is rather perceived
as an effective measure to keep an audience focused. Nonetheless, I believe
that the ability to build credibility is a remarkable skill, and not everyone can
When writing a persuasive speech, you should invest enough time to perfect your introduction because it has the means to make or break you. Your introduction can be a great determinant as regards establishing a presence all through your speech. You should come across as a credible speaker, leader, and influencer, right from your introduction.
Please avoid sounding like a
snob. The idea is not to brag, rather it is to make your audience understand
where you are coming from, your expertize and experiences and why that topic in
particular is important to them, and feel that you of all people are best
suited to deliver that speech.
Always use examples:
If you are the type that
does not know how to make use of examples that match a particular instance,
then you might not know how to persuade. Making use of examples is ferociously
effective when it comes to persuading an audience. It can help you in the
Examples serve as logical
appeal and logos. They are effective in proving any particular point. For
example, it is more convincing to give an example of when and how a particular
thing happened than just saying that it can happen.
Examples serve as emotional
appeal and pathos. Examples usually come with an emotional edge.
Your audience will definitely
find real-life examples more fascinating than just telling them the opinion you
have written in your script.
No matter how professionally and intriguingly written your persuasive speech is, your effort to persuade an audience would yield a miscarriage if you are telling them the same old things they already know. For this reason, it is a must to surprise your audience with good points that they have never heard before.
You can as well make use of
metaphors and stories to buttress your point. This is amongst the persuasive
skills you must possess as a leader, together with the ability to make logical
comparisons that your audience can relate to.
Make your speech emotional:
A leader who knows how to
persuade his followers always ensures that he is never insensitive and cares
about the feelings of his followers. Emotion is pivotal when it comes to
convincing someone to believe you.
If your intent is to
persuade me, and I do not feel anything while listening to you, you will most
definitely end up not changing my preconceived notion about the topic you spoke
You have to talk to me in
a way that touches my life before you can successfully persuade me to believe
Another skill you have to
possess together with your persuasive skills is how to use emotional language
to convince and motivate people.
Practice, and keep practicing:
You cannot become a master at using persuasive speech to influence a large audience in one day. You have to be committed to learning and building up yourself religiously. Check out this post on public speaking tips for beginners.
All the required and
aforementioned techniques needed to deliver a great persuasive speech are
developmental, and can become obsolete and non-effective when you stop
HOW TO CHOOSE PERSUASIVE SPEECH TOPICS
We have discussed the what a persuasive
speech is, and a few techniques on how to craft and deliver them. Now, let us
move on to deciding a topic for this type of speech, from my experience and
that of many others this can sometimes be brain-racking, but putting the
factors below into consideration can make you decide faster.
Familiarity: Choose a topic that you are
familiar with. Delivering a speech you are acquainted with is usually easier
Interest: Choose a topic that you will
be keen to do and enjoy doing a research on. Factually, when you love what you
are doing, you will do it better.
The interest of the audience: When
deciding on what topic to discuss about, you should also consider what topic
the audience will be interested in.
The interest of the
audience is even more important than your interest. This is the point where
your persuasive skills have to come to place; you have to be able to identify
what topic your audience will pay more attention to.
Use visual language: When trying to
choose a topic for your persuasive speech, you should consider choosing a topic
that you can explore on in a descriptive manner. Every leader/influencer that
knows how to persuade an audience knows that this is important in allowing the
audience to visualize, and thereby making it possible to convince them more
New topic: There are so many topics that
have been spoken about innumerable times. If you know most of your audience
must have heard about the topic you have in mind, why don’t you just go for something
different and unique? Or, perhaps a completely new approach to a classic topic.
Emotional topics: Emotions are good motivators
– therefore they are important in making you achieve your aim. It is wise to go
for an emotional topic, for topics that are emotional make it easier to
persuade an audience.
Relatable: Stating that you should go
for a unique topic does not imply that you should go for a strange topic.
People love listening to issues that are affecting them, their environment,
their country, and many more. These topics are considered to be relatable, and
for this reason, people are more interested in listening to these types of
Desired outcome: When deciding the topic
of your persuasive speech, you should first of all think about your aim of
writing the speech. What you want from your audience after listening to you is
a great factor to consider before choosing a topic. Have a clear action plan at
PERSUASIVE SPEECH TOPICS
Now that you have already fathomed the
persuasive skills and techniques required of you as a leader/influencer/speaker,
as well as some useful tips on how to persuade an audience, some examples of
persuasive speech topics are listed for you below.
Should taming be done to wild
Should people be able to
purchase exotic animals?
Should it be mandatory for
every student to learn at least one instrument in school?
Should graffiti be included as
part of arts?
Who should take the blame for
increase in prices of energy?
Should buyers be mandated to
tip waiters in restaurants?
Should euthanasia be legalized?
Does the consumption of meat
Should it be mandatory to vote
Should drug addicts be
incarcerated or treated?
Should all Muslims be blamed
for the actions of a few misguided ones?
Should cultism and religion be
considered as the same thing?
Should the parents of a child
be invested with the means to decide the sex of their yet-to-be born child?
Should a ban be placed on
smoking in public?
I am firm believer that learning and
mastering the use of persuasive speech, and becoming an influencer who inspires
others to rethink and perhaps change their preconceived ideas is a great
investment of time.
As a leader, an influencer, a speaker, a salesperson,
or even as an entrepreneur we all could benefit of the ability to persuade
others and have them buy in to our ideas, products, services, and/or social
causes such as fundraising events.
Follow up the tips shared in this post
whenever you have to deliver an important speech, or negotiate a deal or salary
on a job interview, I am sure they should prove invaluable in making you
achieve you intended goals.
Thank you so much for reading this far and I hope these tips helped you. I am curious to know what other tips you would suggest to all those wishing to learn more about persuasion and delivering persuasive speeches.
I today’s post, I will be sharing the very best tips to turn you into a remarkable speaker. But, before I delve into the nitty grits of how to become a public speaker, and a great one at that, I would like to take you to first understand what is public speaking, how you can become a speaker, and where you should start.
WHAT IS PUBLIC SPEAKING?
Public speaking is the process of speaking to a number of people to influence them, entertain them, and without failing to imbibe them with useful information. It is usually done in a well-structured manner and usually focuses on a particular subject that intrigues the particular audience listening.
Has your school or organization ever organized a seminar? If yes, then the large crowd of students or staff is the audience, while the person that addresses the large crowd is known as the public speaker.
There are countless advantages of speaking in public, which includes proliferated critical thinking and improved communication skills. Many love the idea of speaking in public, but a large percentage of them are still not keen to do it because of the feeling that it takes a lot to speak effectively. However, it all starts at a small stage – addressing fellow classmates about a particular subject is an adorable way by which some started.
HOW TO BECOME A PUBLIC SPEAKER?
A considerable amount of people have become successful by going through this path. If you have always loved people in this field and desire to be one of them, then this content will encourage you and give you hints on how to go about it. It is reasonable to know that the journey may not be a very smooth one, and you may encounter several challenges, but it will yield a good result in the fullness of time.
Some of the requisites to be successful in this field include hard work, patience, and cognizance of a topic. It is quite fascinating and inspiring to watch famous speakers motivate multitudes of individuals by going on stage and holding a microphone, but many are oblivious of the investment and commitment that has been made before these speakers became successful. Below are effective ways to become a public speaker.
START WITH YOUR COMMUNITY: This is how I started.
Imagine if you have never spoken in public and you are to speak in front of 10,000 people in your first trial. It is bound to happen that you will fail to speak effectively, and thereby goof sheepishly.
You can start with speaking at small events with a small audience in your community. Apart from that being a medium to start and build your public speaking career, it is also a shrewd approach to gain experience. The experience gained from speaking at events in your community will compound to make you a better public speaker for bigger events in the future.
· VOLUNTEER AT INDUSTRY CONFERENCES:
To be on the radar of the individuals that make the major decisions at big industry events, you should be ready to volunteer your time at these big events.
Being a volunteer will give you the opportunity to get a free conference badge. The badge will make you accessible to every attendee, which will include the speakers at the event. Additionally, this may also give you the opportunity to speak at the event. This is a profoundly effective way to get your name in the ears and mouths of many people attending the conference.
Many events have had upcoming speakers begin with being a tracker leader, before growing to panels or solo sessions.
· CONTACT EVENT ORGANIZERS:
You cannot become a public speaker by sitting at home all day to read about tips to speak effectively. You need a medium to be known for what you do and the only way you can get this medium is to communicate with event organizers.
Take it as a habit to send emails to organizers of event conferences. It is an easy process that requires no agent or virtual assistant for it to be carried out. The first step to take is the identification of a host of events that will be coming up in the future. After identification, you are to get the emails of the organizers of these events and send them a concise and enthralling email about your interest to speak at the events respectively.
The name of the organizers responsible for choosing speakers at an event and their individual emails are mostly posted on the event website. It is of paramount importance to categorically state your name, experience, interested topic, and reasons why you are the best public speaker for the event.
· MAKE SPEAKING SAMPLES AND TESTIMONIALS:
When it comes to your public speaking career, it is perspicacious to have samples of your speech, as well as several testimonials. A lot of event organizers may doubt your ability to speak effectively, and will thereby need solid proof before choosing you as a public speaker of their event.
You can hire a freelance videographer that would record you whenever you are on stage speaking. In events where the organizers already have videographers, you may request for a video excerpt of your speech. It is quite reasonable if you have the capital to invest in creating a website precisely for your public speaking career. This website will be quite useful to showcase your works and you can also send the website link to event organizers – it will also give the organizers a good impression of you.
10 BEST TIPS TO HELP YOU BECOME A GREAT PUBLIC SPEAKER
It is a known fact that public speaking can cause nervousness, body fidgeting, and restlessness, especially for people that don’t do it often. However, it is not difficult to improve yourself, as it majorly requires practice and preparedness. Below are crucial tips on how you can become a better public speaker within a short time span.
1. IT IS NORMAL TO BE NERVOUS:
Nervousness and shyness are feelings, and are never part of the traits anyone possesses. If you get the opportunity to converse with the greatest extrovert, you will be shocked to know he also feels nervous sometimes. Now that you know nervousness is normal, it is time for you to know that it shouldn’t stop you from delivering.
Now that you know nervousness is normal, it is time for you to know that it shouldn’t stop you from delivering.
2. LET YOUR AUDIENCE COME FIRST:
No matter how outstanding your speech and delivery are, you will fail to speak effectively if you do not put your audience first. It is important to know that public speaking is not about the speaker, but about the audience.
You need to give yourself to your audience if you want to grow to become a prestigious public speaker.
3. ALWAYS BE PREPARED:
Planning ahead is the reason why you listen to some motivational speakers and wish they wouldn’t stop speaking.
Preparedness is an effective way to deliver a great message with a great demeanor and charisma. Preparedness will make you know who your audience is, what intrigues them, and make it possible for you to tailor your speech to make it more attention arresting to them.
4. DRASTICALLY IMPROVE YOUR STORYTELLING SKILLS:
By taking the time to
improve your storytelling skills, which is pretty much the best skill any
public speaker can have, you will allow yourself to be able to explain in
simple terms, and in a storylike manner concepts, and ideas that
could otherwise bore your audience.
By being able to tell
great stories, you will more easily inspire, influence and inform your audience
with that amazing idea which brought you
to the stage. Remember that we are social creatures, and we have been listening
and telling stories to each other since the very inception of our existence.
That alone should tell you how critical it is to be able to tell stories.
5. DO NOT SCRIPT UNLESS YOU HAVE TO:
The best way to speak effectively, especially in public, is to have full cognizance of your speech. For this reason, it is advisable to rather outline your speech. Outlining and understanding what you have to say will make your delivery better and more fascinating.
Writing what you have to say word-for-word will most likely harm your speech spontaneity, and possibly bore your audience. Additionally, understanding what you have to say and delivering without a script shows confidence and competency.
There are exceptions to this tip, such as for politicians, CEOs, and other extremely busy people who have someone else write the speech for them, or for those who will be quoting other authors/speakers. If you want to find out how to craft a memorable speech, please check this other post.
When it comes to public speaking, even the legends and most prestigious public speakers still perceive it as a ritual to practice always. Practicing your speech before the very day when you will deliver in front of an audience is an effective way to give a remarkable speech.
Practicing will make you more comfortable and confident when you finally decide to deliver your messages. Going an extra mile to practice in front of someone that would review your speech is also quite reasonable and effective.
I help people get ready for their presentations by reviewing their materials, script, watching their presentation and pointing out where they should improve, if you want more details please check our contact page and send us a message.
A speaker who will always speak effectively is a speaker who will always listen to his audience while delivering his messages.
You need to understand the rule of engagement when delivering your speech, whether you are delivering to a small number of people or a very large crowd. You need to have the means to read your audience always; you have to listen to what they are saying, in order to know what to say next.
You also need to be able to watch for visual cues, especially for large audience. A good public speaker knows when his audience is already getting bored and knows the best solution to administer forthwith.
I shared great tips on how to ensure your audience is engaged and enjoying your speech in this FREE, 2500+ word long eBook. Click on this link, so you can get it delivered to your mailbox.
8. EYE CONTACT:
A lot of people are ignorant of the power of making eye contacts. Many feel it has no effect on your speech, but I tell you today that it does have.
Making eye contact when delivering your speech shows engagement and care. I am pretty sure you do not want to appear like a statue that has been programmed to talk through in-built speakers – you definitely know your audience won’t find this attractive or engaging.
9. FOCUS ON THE RULE OF 3s:
One of the best ways to craft your speech in a way that will make it memorable is to make sure you use three lines, or adjectives to express your idea, and the human brain has been designed to best remembers ideas that come in 3s.
By using the rule of threes, you can express yourself allowing your speech to have a beginning, middle and ending part. Additionally, you can emphasize your idea, this post from Andrew of Sixminutes elaborates on the topic please check it out.
10. BE REAL:
Public speaking puts you in a position for others to study and judge you. That being said, you know if you are fake, and if that is the case then you are only coming out to tell a bunch of individuals that you are fake.
Do not act confident, be confident. Do not act like you are prepared, be prepared. Always ensure that throughout your speech, you behave yourself and stay completely natural.
Public speaking is much of an art as drawing and writing; all are millenary skills that our ancestors have been developing in order to inform, educate, and influence others.
If you look at it from another angle, you have been speaking in public your whole life in those daily conversations you had with family and friends, and you were always practicing it. Speaking to a large crowd is simply a step higher.
The tips given to you above have the means to build you from a shy introvert to a highly reputable public speaker that is wanted all across the globe. It all starts by making the decision to go through the path and taking your first step.
Evidently, you can’t become the best speaker at your first trial; In fact, you can perform woefully at your first trial, but this is normal for many neophytes in the field, and you can still develop to become the best through the tips above and constant practice.
Thank you for reading this far, I genuinely hope you have found this article insightful, and would love to read your comments below.
Stunning leaders not only are identified by technical standards, work experience, and leadership competencies but also possess fundamental beliefs, guidelines, and character that encourage and inspire others to want to follow and collaborate with them. In today’s post, we will discuss critical skills and tips for aspiring leaders, entrepreneurs which should help them become successful leaders.
Extraordinary leadership depends on fundamental qualities and attributes that create a filter for the practices and behaviors observed in these leaders. Essentially, they discuss, they walk, and in an absolute manner, they are the conversation.
I am an advocate of the need for raising the next generation leaderstaking into consideration the challenges that the future holds. With the rapid advance of technologies like A.I. and the Internet of
Things, people will lose their jobs, they will become redundant in certain fields of work, that is inevitable, and it is happening already.
These remarkable advances in technology will also bring about a lot of new jobs and opportunities, disruption and continuous innovation will be the key, and to rally the troops to navigate these amazing times we will need more and more capable Leaders.
For the next five minutes, I will be sharing with you what I think a good leader is, and the required skills, education, and personal development endeavors that he/she should take to succeed in leading the next generation (in business, personal life, and so on).
What is being a good Leader?
Good leadership has to do with who you are and what you represent, as well as what you do. I will instead say that it is the “being” of leadership rather than the “doing” that makes the true leaders.
Being a good leader is more difficult than merely doing good activities and leadership. If you do not have a clear idea of the “being,” then “doing” will not matter.
You can easily recognize the façade or coating that challenges and pressures reveal in the inner core of a person. It is obvious you will have to “be” and “do” to attain the best performance with the team. These two dimensions of leadership are inseparable. Actions and intentions are intensifying each other.
For example, trust entails delegating and empowering others, which enhances commitment to the principle of trust. In short, to do (delegate) without “being” (trust) is something artificial and superficial. On the contrary, “being” without “doing” is completely ineffective. However, “being” without “working” is self-deception.
Believing that you are a good leader simply because you have strong beliefs is completely empty and false. The importance of being “be” is more important only because it is the place from which authentic actions originate.
PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT TIPS FOR ASPIRING LEADERS
1. Improving your public speaking skills
Mastering public speaking skills can take you to higher heights in life. Being an effective communicator is expected and necessary for you to lead and inspire others. Therefore, do your very best to learn the art of public speaking, and practice as much as you possibly can.
We have many examples in history of great leaders such as Abraham Lincoln, Gandhi, Churchill, Luther King, Steve Jobs, and many more. These individuals achieved a lot in their lifetimes, but people also remember their speeches. As a leader, you are expected to be confident and inspire others through your vision translated into powerful and inspiring words.
2. Working Under Great Leaders & Lousy Ones
I have learned a lot from working for multiple great bosses over the years. A few examples are: being a good listener, speaker, always willing to protect your team, to support them even at your own cost, and to coach them and instill in them the ability to believe in themselves and their future.
I had lousy ones too, who also could inspire others. Unfortunately, it was in the wrong way. You’d be inspired to quit your job, to work less and waste time, to feel like not going to work in the morning, and to really wish you could punch them in the face.
Micromanaging, leaving your team to die when things get tough and throw them under the bus, never admitting your mistakes or your teams’, shouting all the time and being rude to others just because you’re the boss is the complete opposite of what a great leader should be like.
3. Leading Small Teams
Leading small teams can give you a glimpse of what it looks like to deal with people. It is one of the most required skills of a leader in virtually any age, as people are always responsible for making things happen.
Being able to deal with conflicts within the team and making them work well with one another, giving them a purpose and common goals, and guiding or coaching them to reach all the expected results is part and parcel of being a good leader.
4. Getting to know yourself and decide on Your Leadership Style
A leader is someone who guides and influences other people; a great one is someone who knows him or herself, has learned from the many lessons in life, and business/career, and is now ready to help others grow and become leaders themselves one day. How does he/she go about doing that? By having a specific leadership style that matches with his/her personality, values, and experience.
5. Coaching Others
Take some time to give back by coaching other aspiring leaders, those who will be taking up the mantle and leading the reins of your business, team, followers, or one of your followers themselves, who wish to pursue a career of leadership and management, or perhaps wants also to lead the community, group, or team that you have been leading.
This will allow you to improve yourself and maybe learn a few things that surprisingly your student is now going through, but you have never faced before.
6. Ascertain the Image of who you want to be:
Reaffirm it to yourself in quiet
moments. Feed upon it! We develop just like the things that we inwardly
cherish, and those matters, the mind deeply
The biblical adage
says it even strongly: “Just like people think, so they are.”
When you have proved,
through following these simple steps ultimately you can be a master of yourself,
and prove that you could be a masterful chief of others.
To be a leader, you must realize and grow the following skills:
Your God-given powers are fettered until you dare to attempt to increase that self-reliance. How can you acquire self-reliance? What are you able to do to increase that strong self-respect that makes every day of life and journey as opposed to a tour into fear? The initial task is to develop self-reliance or have a strong belief in yourself.
It is a remarkable truth that of all of the billions of human beings in this world, there are not any of them alike. Therefore you’re particular, and because you are particular, you’ve got a contribution and an opportunity to give the arena something that no one else can supply.
You are special and your experiences in everyday life are completely yours, you have to believe in yourself. You have a completely unique position and lifestyle. You have the destiny to reap.
9. Discover your Strong Points:
Certainly, you cannot do the whole lot or recognize the whole lot, but every one of us can do one, two or many greater matters nicely. Perhaps higher than anybody in the world can do. Therefore you need to know the area of your talents or your skills excessive inside the scheme of things.
You should study even greater about them. It would help if you expanded them so thoroughly that you may be preeminent in them. For as you broaden these sturdy factors more, you develop in stature in your own mind and inside the minds of others.
10. GET INSPIRED BY LEGENDS:
A similar step in developing self-leadership or self-reliance is to study the biographies of amazing personalities in the leadership realm.
From every analyzing, the excellent truth will emerge – That the men whom history facts are incredible were not heroes, but humans very similar to you, who were conscious in their own imperfections, regularly baffled by using circumstance, regularly thwarted by means of “unfortunate” happenings.
However, they had been human beings of the cause — not even their own weaknesses avoided them from following their dominating purpose, their chosen and planned way, to reach their intention.
Most of them had greater than their share of misfortune and frustration, and they had guts they persevered and lived on. If you may study such biographies, it will be a lot less difficult to trust in yourself on your capability to do equally heroic matters.
BONUS TIPS: RECOMMENDED EDUCATION
If you are a manager in any tier, you can benefit from management ability training – however, if schooling suits your wishes and professional degree, you should further your education to become a better leader. Many often think it is unreasonable to go for leadership training designed for newly promoted undertaking managers if you’re already the leading government officer. These type of people believe more in degrees and online courses.
Before searching for exceptional management courses, think about the unique management abilities you want to increase. Take for instance, are you willing to enhance your capabilities to inspire your group? To solve conflicts? Or are you seeking out education on commercial enterprise leadership? Are you willing to improve administrative competencies in order to do your current task extra effectively, or as a way to tackle a higher position?
So, how do you pick out the proper leadership education? You pick out a program that best suits your field; you can choose any of these programs to develop your leadership skills.
Some out of the many degrees that are recommended for leaders and prospective leaders are listed below:
A. MBA: Master of Business Administration is a graduate degree that gives students sufficient theoretical knowledge and practical training channeled to help them gain insights into general business management functions. People that have obtained this degree are often found in top management positions. This is because MBA courses teach the fundamental technical skills business leaders need.
MBA degree holders are being built to be critical thinkers and smart decision makers. Obtaining an MBA will give you an insight into business finance, organizational theory, planning, and so many other technical skills.
B. MBL: Masters of Business Leadership provides you with professional management development skills at the graduate level, with special interest on the theory and the practice of leadership. This degree is precisely for people who want to be in leadership positions. MBL courses imbibe you with the dos and don’ts of a leader.
Some out of the many online courses that are recommended for leaders and prospective leaders are listed below:
A. Leading People and Teams Specialization: This online course gives you sufficient knowledge to lead effectively and learn proven management techniques in just four courses. It is offered by the University of Michigan and takes approximately five months to complete. Visit www.coursera.org/specializations/leading-teams
B. Strategic Leadership and Management Specialization: This online course gives you sufficient knowledge on leadership and business skill, and aims at making you an effective organizational leader. It is offered by the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and takes approximately eight months to complete. Visit www.coursera.org/specializations/strategic-leadership
C. Inspirational Leadership: Leading with Sense Specialization: This online course aims at shaping your life to become a leader, manager, or colleague in three courses. The specialization helps you switch from a top-down leadership, with the emphasis on authority, to an open leadership based on sense and trust. It is offered by HEC Paris and takes approximately five months to complete. Visit www.coursera.org/specializations/inspirational-leadership
If you do not want to go through the stress of obtaining a degree or taking online courses, then you can consider having a leadership coach/mentor. Some out of the many platforms to hire a leadership coach that are recommended for you are listed below:
A. Themuse: This platform has many leadership coaches that have enough experience and expertise to make you become a manager, establish yourself as a leader, and in general, excel in any organization. Visit www.themuse.com/coaching/leadership-coaching
B. ICF: This organization boasts of considerable amounts of credentialed coaches that have met stringent education and experience requirements. Visit www.coachfederation.org/find-a-coach
C. Life Coach Hub: This is another platform that brings a large number of competent leadership coaches together for you to choose the best for you. The coaches are available to empower you to excel in your leadership roles, and they are always available at your disposal. Visit www.lifecoachhub.com/leadership-coach
The tips listed in this post, as well as the skills we recommend every aspiring leader to develop can serve you well both as an entrepreneur as well as a professional working on a normal 9 to 5 job; every entrepreneur/professional who grows their business will one day have to lead others.
If you are working under a good leader, and he/she notices your self-reliance and self-assurance they will want to put you to a higher use. They will want to make you a leader rather than “one of the herds.”
Quite likely, they are going to promote you to a supervisory position. It is right here that your mettle can be very well tested, and it is far right here that these tips are going to assist you effectively.
I want to close by thanking you for reading this far, and leaving one final piece of advice:
Being a successful leader has a lot to do with what difference you have made in people’s lives and how your actions, words, or even silence inspired them to do better and become a better version of themselves.
Why should you care about being good
at speaking in Public?
Well, don’t take my word for it. Let
me share with you one of my favorite quotes on the subject:
“Of all the talents bestowed upon men, none is so
precious as the gift of oratory. He who enjoys it wields a power more durable
than that of a great king. He is an independent force in the world.”
— Sir Winston Churchill
Even though there are so many benefits of being skilled at speaking in public and influencing others, people are still not quite at ease when it comes to standing in front of others and sharing their voice, and ideas. It can be a frightening experience; some even become anxious just by thinking about it.
What is Performance Anxiety?
From in-depth study and case analysis, the concept of
performance anxiety has proven to be quite prevalent when dealing with public
speaking. Often time than not, most people simply
shy away from the task of public speaking. However, when put in a position to
deliver a speech, they are prone to an immeasurable level of performance
Funny how this might sound, but yes, I too have been a
victim of public speaking anxiety, and up to
this day depending on the stakes I get nervous, butterflies in the belly, dry
throat, and feeling of anxiousness that even prevents me from sleeping the
I am not going to claim to suffer
from chronic anxiety disorders, nor to know precisely how to stop it, because I
believe we are all a little afraid of something. The idea is to learn to cope
and deal with it more effectively.
A few examples of what typically
The nervous shock
that comes with the awareness that you are about to face an audience;
self-doubt, the worrying if you will say the right things, or if you are even
going to be able to articulate at all;
The fear of looking
stupid in front of your peers, and that shivering feeling that seems only to
get worse the closer you get to the appointed time of the speech.
Your hands get wet, and you start
feeling your throat dry out, your head is filled up with thoughts of how
horrible things can go, and you feel unprepared to share your wonderful idea with the world.
One thing you must realize
is that performance anxiety happens to almost everyone,
cutting across all walks of life and professions. So, public speakers are not
left out. The condition is not peculiar to you, not at all; rather, it is more rampant than you can ever
Kant (2000) stated that the condition is predominant from age 20 – 80. This is, in fact, the totality of one’s adult life. The whole idea of public speaking performance anxiety runs with an internal phobia; a self-imposed pressure on oneself, fear of embarrassment. Hence, it is only wise that you see a professional.
Locking yourself up, hiding in your shell and retreating cannot do you any good. If you are not ready to seek professional help yet, or perhaps you’d like to try a few tricks that people like me, and many others have tried and helped us improve ourselves and deal with public speaking performance anxiety, then please take some time and go through this article, it should prove insightful.
What exactly is
public speaking performance anxiety?
of anxiety is described as a condition of apprehension,
uneasiness, and fear which occurs when faced with a situation perceived as threatening.
As part of social anxiety, stage
performance anxiety and also public speaking performance anxiety (glassophobia)
is characterized by avoidance of
performance, when, however, people are
put in the situation to offer a public speech; the issue of performance anxiety
You must know that public speaking
is somewhat sub-requirement for any job. You
should be able to express yourself and sell an idea to the best of your
capability if you want to succeed in almost any field.
Public speaking anxiety is a class of social anxiety that
produces a specific phobia when a person is faced with certain social conditions which entail speaking, performing, to a larger crowd
or even to one or two people. This strain
is often time characterized by emotional
breakdown, physical reactions such as nervousness, shaking and worry.
In a recent poll by Gallup, it was reported that a whopping 40 percent of adults living in the
United States suffer from varying degrees
of public speaking performance anxiety.
Many folks cower away when it comes to public
speaking. In 2014, a survey made by Chapman
University reported that over 25.3% of its residential population are afraid of
public speaking and would usually shy away from any effort to deliver or present
According to comedian Jerry Seinfeld, “people’s number one fear is public speaking, number two is death; this means to the average person, if you go to a funeral you are better off in the casket, than doing the eulogy.” Hilarious comment but a valid deduction.
I happened to be at a function some few days back, some college students were charged with giving a speech which revolved around the theme of the summit. About ten (10) of them, we all know how group presentation usually comes off, with a leader and others acting as assistants.
When the time came for the group leader
to begin his presentation; he completely froze, I could see
through the hollow in his eye. When the crowd started
clapping, I sensed it made him feel worse; he
tried to withdraw back into his team; however, one stood firm, tapped him in
the back and whispered some words to him. In less than a minute, he kicked off
and amazed the entire audience way beyond our expectations.
Most people are faced
with performance anxiety just because
they anticipate a response from the crowd, a response which naturally may not
exist, but the image already formed automatically describes the premise for the
anticipation, this leads to fear and nervous breakdown.
According to a psychologist, Vivian Diller (2013) ‘The key to staying calm is not getting nervous about feeling nervous. Finding a balance between controlling as much as you can, while recognizing there will be some things you can’t control, is key to not letting your nerves interfere.
Public speaking performance anxiety; a limitation to the presentation
Public speaking performance anxiety has a massive effect on performance, your
anticipation of failure acts on your psychological posture to deliver; the
inbuilt fear already harbored limits the
capacity to present your speech to your maximum capability.
A few questions that beg answers, why are you scared
of speaking in public? What ticks you off? What frightens you? What exactly is
it that makes you feel so uneasy? When you begin to answer these questions truthfully, then you will go a long way on finding solutions to the
Stage performance anxiety and public speaking performance anxiety can only mar your performance. Form the inception; you have already set out to fail, by being scared of embarrassing yourself, having low self-esteem and lack of trust in your ability confines your potential and limits your mind to explore talents which exist within.
Common causes of public speaking performance anxiety
Let us go through some of the most
common causes of performance
anxiety. Read through this list and figure out that which relates to you, this
is a simple way to know what affects you and the beginning of how to address
Fear of people- social anxiety
Most of the time, the fear of
addressing two (2) or more people, or standing in front of a crowd is perceived as an uphill task to some people.
The fear of people is a widespread
phenomenon associated with stage and public speaking performance anxiety and studies have shown that it is a cause of
The fear of people otherwise known as anthropophobia is a condition which causes uneasiness when put in interaction with other people.
Fear or embarrassing oneself
As stated earlier, one of the causes of performance anxiety is the fear of embarrassment. The internal anxiety developed overtime nursing the “what ifs,” questioning your ability to deliver.
Presentation brain freeze
What will happen if I forget what I’m supposed to say? What happens if I get stuck? What happens if I get a presentation brain freeze?
Many of us forget that mistakes are normal and that even the best of us make mistakes. This does not make you a lesser person than the other. What makes the difference is the ability to shake off the error and continue to deliver your speech as if nothing happened.
Being afraid of committing mistakes, like forgetting one point, or dropping the microphone is one of the major causes of presentation anxiety, a fear of failure.
One way to beat it is by practicing, and also a simple belief in your capability goes a long way in keeping our mental, physical and psychological readiness in top gear.
The fear of not being expert enough
Perhaps you have seen other presenters and how smooth their delivery and body gesture is. The fear of not being expert enough becomes a cause of public speaking performance anxiety.
You are afraid of competition
Lack of faith in your sales pitch adequacy
Fear of failure
Most often, when people deliver
speeches, the crowd is expected to ask questions, and the speaker gives answers to the issues raised.
common fear lies in the questioning of your ability to answer questions.
The answer to this, though more straightforward
than you may think, has created various degrees of strain on public speakers.
Planning your speech and having adequate information on your topic gives you a
100% assurance on your ability to deliver.
Fear of not been prepared enough
How performance anxiety is holding you back?
When the above causes of performance anxiety, whether related to public speaking or stage
performance, are not appropriately addressed,
are likely to arise. Some of these issues are graver than the original fear as
In the long run, the avoidance of public speaking can
cost us even more harm, loss of goodwill, opportunities than the embarrassment
we initially sought to cover.
You lose out of networking with fantastic people
You miss out business opportunities
You lose out on developing your mental capacity and
The ability to effectively expressing yourself in front of others
You may miss out on winning funding, sales, and revenue for your business
You lose out on learning from your failure and becoming a better version of yourself.
You continue to get stuck in your comfort zone
Most importantly, you let one of the most amazing unique voices (your voice) from reaching out to the world and share your perspective, making others unaware of your existence, strides, and efforts.
13 Amazing Tips to help You Overcome Public Speaking Performance Anxiety
I mentioned earlier that performance anxiety is
common, even more than we would usually
care to admit. Know that whatever you are going
through when faced with the task of speaking in front of others is not peculiar
to you. You are not alone!
The person you probably look up to has his/her own share of performance anxiety; the difference lies in the ability to manage
the fear. I admit it’s not easy standing
in front of the crowd talking, but practice is the best teacher, and in time, you too will tell your own crowds about how you wrestled public
speaking performance anxiety and won.
“I’ve learned that fear limits you and your vision. It serves as blinders to what may be just a few steps down the road for you. The journey is valuable, but believing in your talents, your abilities, and your self-worth can empower you to walk down an even brighter path. Transforming fear into freedom – how great is that?”( Soledad O’Brien)
Here are some incredible tips which will help you grow as you begin your journey
Acknowledge that you are afraid (1)
In the words of Nelson Mandela, “I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear.’
Hence, the knowledge and the acceptance of ones fear is the first step in overcoming such fear.
Buttressing this point, Eleanor Roosevelt, former first lady of the United States, said,
“You gain strength, courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself, ‘I have lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along.’ You must do the thing you think you cannot do.”
This is the hallmark of strength. Fear holds no glory; rather it is a limitation to what you should have achieved.
Study and research your topic(2)
An excellent study and research will provide you with a stronghold,
a stable and solid posture and confidence in the presentation you are about to
make. Know your topic, research on the
pros and cons of your topic. The information
you are able to garner will aid you in maneuvering around the subject when speaking.
‘Successful and unsuccessful people do not vary greatly in their abilities. They vary in their desires to reach their potential.’ – John Maxwell.
Therefore, to reach your potential, you should be able to read, study, research and practice. Hard work has many advantages, more than we actually know of.
In the words of Thomas Jefferson, ‘I find that the harder I work the more luck I seem to have.’ This shows that hard work, study and smart works can only lead to success.
Have a good idea of the audience you are about to
address. This information will sharpen the speech you are about to give.
Prepare your speech according to the age
bracket and the professional position of
your audience. It will be very awkward to deliver a speech meant for high school students to a bar association audience
and vice versa. Know your audience and niche your speech to suit that grouping.
Have a guideline on how you want your script to go. It will be foolhardy to cram up all you want to say in your head or read out your whole speech word for word to the audience. You become boring, and within a second, you lose the audience. So, have a script which will guide your speech. Write out short point and flow with what you have already researched in your head. Using this format, you become active, alive and engaging.
Have a strategy (5)
Presentation strategy is a unique tactic some of the best public speakers you
know utilizes when presenting their speeches. Some kickstart theirs with hilarious comedy, others with some stories,
fiction or not, we don’t know, but it surely arouses the crowd. This is the best way to attract your audience.
You can try using these icebreakers to begin your presentation. Activities,
games, stories are an excellent way to
warm up your crowd and make them feel comfortable and relaxed before you start.
You surely do not want
some serious looking middle-aged men and women looking squarely into
your eyes especially when you a prone to performance anxiety. Best way to avoid
that is by introducing your icebreakers. So consider using killer quotes, great
jokes or, life lesson analogies in your next public presentation and behold the
magic you will see.
Make a visual aid (6)
You don’t always need to
be all up in your audience faces. Besides,
videos and other graphical representation would usually paint the picture better
than you would. So, prepare your videos, power points, virtual reality,
augmented reality to assist you in your speech presentation.
Rehearse your speech(7)
The best way to rehearse
is by speaking to yourself. Stand in front of the mirror and rehearse your speech, your strategies all to yourself over
and over again. Add up body language a facial expression to bring life to your
presentation. Connect your plan, script
and visual aids until you get it right.
Maintain a healthy diet and sleep habit before the big day(8)
Before your big day, remember to eat healthily and avoid sleep starvation. You don’t
want to look sluggish and tired in front of people who came to learn from you.
Make a pre-stage ritual(9)
Pre-stage ritual is the final stage of your planning. It helps
you relax and girdle up for the speech. So, visualize how great you are on stage, picture yourself
giving out a killer speech. Take deep breaths, warm up the voice, lips and throat. Take
with you a bottle of water, as your throat may run dry.
How to deal with Brain freeze (10)
Pausing is the best way to
deal is a brain freeze. Smile and tell
the audience about yourself and what makes this topic in particular important
to you. From there, you can arrange the points in your head, sort out the ideas
and recover from there.
When a technical glitch occurs, whether it be
microphone malfunction, projector or network signal disruption, take charge of
your room. Lighten the mood and keep
talking, you could make your voice louder
through voice projection or convey your messages with authority in your voice.
This way, you continue to have a hold of your audience.
It would help if you did not let the audience feel you have lost your composure.
In fact, why would you lose your
composure in the first place? Accidents happen and losing your composure over these
type of situation is a loss. Such action will
drastically affect the audiences behavioral
response to the situation.
Feedbacks are a way of assessing your performance as a
speaker. Create questions and answer segment, interact with your audience
through quizzes and games. Provide for various
charades and guessing games.
Feedback is the final point in your public speaking process.
Remember, the way you leave your audience
determines how remarkable your speech will be in their heart.
Closing a speech with an icebreaker is an incredible way to conclude. You want to leave the stage with a standing ovation. Leaving the stage with a quote from a great personality on the subject of your presentation will be a great way to end your presentation.
Stage performance anxiety and public speaking
performance anxiety in more severe cases will usually include panic attacks,
nervous breakdown and in general distress.
Moreover, at this level, I strongly advise you
to seek professional help.
Exchanging experiences with someone
who is familiar with the problem of stage and public speaking anxiety is the best
way to overcome this strain. Kant stressed that no one was above public
speaking performance anxiety; this included people
in business, doctors, lawyers, artist and even the experienced public speakers or stage performers’
themselves. She pointed out that the only way to fight of this strain is by
practicing. Even the best speakers practice, so why can’t you?
Follow these tips and get set to overcome public
speaking performance anxiety. I cannot wait for you to become a better version
of yourself, for you to grow your
business and make incredible exploits. Being
able to comfortably and effectively express yourself is critical in today’s
Conducting audience analysis is as important as giving the speech itself. It assists in getting into the heads of your audience. Appropriate use of the audience analysis results before your speech or presentation can exponentially improve your chances as a speaker to meet and exceed your audience’s expectations.
Over the years, professional public speakers have used audience analysis
to improve their public speaking prowess. In contemporary times, the practice
has become more widely used in different fields and also by new and
professional public speakers.
The concept of audience analysis infers to the practice of identifying one’s
audience and modifying his/her speech to adapt to the understanding, interest,
beliefs, and attitude of the audience.
It can be referred to as an audience-centered approach.
To begin your analysis, you need to ask yourself some critical questions like, who are you? Why are you doing this? Who are your audience? Why are they your audience? What do they need? What value can you impart? What value should you impart? Is the topic of any relevance to them? Will your topic interest them? What are the challenges you might face?
These questions will aid in building the framework of your public speaking presentation pattern and the expectations of your crowd. Additionally, it will allow you to craft an adequate, tailor-made, and memorable speech to deliver to them.
Importance of conducting audience analysis before your speech
your audience, their background, needs, belief systems, and thinking capacity go a
long way to determine the format of your speech.
Been aware of certain demographics such as;
Educational background and many more.
important aspects that will help build up
the structure of your speech, and this
can only be achieved by conducting an audience analysis.
to know your audience will give you ample information about them. This information
will come in handy when delivering your speech as it creates an avenue to reach
a common ground with them as the audience.
analysis strengthens the prospect of achieving an audience-centered presentation.
point, you begin to tailor your speech to adapt to your audience. The content
of your speech is automatically modified
to suit that specific audience. Using this technique, you are not only going to
speak to the audience but also interact with them
on the topic.
an audience analysis before your speech can also create an avenue for a favorable response from the crowd based on your
understanding of their thinking pattern. You no longer become an outsider; rather, you are
perceived as one of them. Their body language, facial expression, and shoulder movements become in agreement with
To guide you in conducting a valid audience analysis before your speech, I shall provide you with ten (10) tips which will make your pre-planning and the final speech presentation an overall success.
Ten (10) easy tips on how to conduct your audience analysis
are some ways you can successfully carry out an audience analysis before your speech;
The sample selection
Interact with your sample
Become your audience
Use words which will match your audience vocabulary
Draw relevant sources
Choose stories that are relatable to your Audience
Personalize your call to action
The tips mentioned above will help you structure your presentation. Though these may look difficult, they are actually quite easy, simple and stress-free to conduct. As a matter of fact, these tips for audience analysis can be achieved in your living room either with a neighbor or even through an online interactive process (Facebook conference, Whatsapp meetings).
1. Sample selection
sample of your proposed audience. It does not have to be the original audience but
a selection from the age group or profession
For example is
when you are about to deliver a speech to a graduating class from a University,
and you find out that sophomores will be attending too, as well as the
graduating class’ parents, and younger brothers.
If that’s the case, what will you do about your speech? Will you speak
only to the graduates, will their younger brothers, and sophomores be sleeping
in your speech?
My advice? Write a speech that will make almost everyone one, if not all, feel like you are talking directly to them at some points of the address, as for the final points dedicate them to the graduating class.
2. Interact with Your sample audience
with your selected sample. Interact with them to understand their mindset.
Discuss the topic with them. This interaction will help you know how much the selected topic
is of interest to them. Are you backing up the wrong horse? Is that the right
topic for the category of the audience?
Will you be able to impact/inspire much?
3. Collect Data
your interaction with your selected samples, you would be able to collect the
opinions and answers of each sample. This
is called data collection.
One of the things you might find, following the example proposed above, is that the parents brought the younger
brothers/sisters of the graduating class to
inspire them to one day to also want to finish
4. Analyzing the data
the data is collected, it is only wise that
you analyze the response from your
sampled audience. This will generally
form the bases of your proposed speech, test the validity of your topic and guide you in forming a speech pattern for your event.
Going back to our example
After you found out that not only will you be
addressing the graduating class, but also their younger siblings, you can
include in your speech an inspirational bit of encouragement to these siblings
to follow the footsteps of their older brothers/sisters graduating that day. You
can also congratulate the parents for investing in their child’s educations,
and so on.
5. Become your audience
point would be putting yourself in the shoes of your audience. When you do this
as a speaker, you will be able to conveniently see the weak parts of your speech and how to build on it.
easily see the need and value you should input into your audience. With this realization, you can easily create a
format which will be suitable to both yourself as a speaker and your audience.
You will also know how to dress up in a way that should prove
comfortable for them when watching you on stage.
Following our example:
As a parent, on your son’s/daughter’s graduating day?
What would you love to hear from the keynote speaker’s
address, what would inspire you as a teenager to want also to get a degree?
What would serve as a word of thankfulness and
encouragement to the teachers and masters of knowledge to keep educating future
generations of graduates?
Would you come with some shorts, and slippers to address
the graduating class?
6. Select supporting points appropriate for the audience and the event at large.
out points which will be appropriate for your audience and build on those
Do your very best to stick to the main point of your topic while trying to speak in public.
Make sure that the topics are in
resonance with the interest of the audience and their beliefs.
Using our example
You are addressing the graduating class, their
families, the university staff, and so on, and you’re trying to inspire all of
those people there to face the real world and bring about innovation and
development to the country. Please don’t go off topic and mention things like
how to be a good husband/wife; it’s simply not the right place or moment to do
You could venture to discuss the role of education in society,
how the graduating class is a hope for a better tomorrow, and thank the faculty
members, parents, and relatives for their support in helping to nurture these
new graduates, and seeds of the future.
7. Use words which will match your audience vocabulary
you may be very articulate and capable of poetry feats that can’t be matched easily, that’s all good and well if
you are addressing a group of highly educated, and specialized individuals.
However, if you’re speaking in front of teenagers, high-schoolers, and so on, try
using a level of vocabulary which seats well with your target audience. This way,
there is an ample flow of information between you and your audience.
It would be unproductive and annoying
to the audience to be listening to a speaker who seems to be the only one in
the room who understands what he/she is talking about.
Don’t be that Speaker!
If we go by our Example:
When you were doing your scout work (sampling your
audience), you realized that there are going to be teenagers amidst the
graduating class, parents who may or may not have had a high level of education, teachers, professors, engineers, and so
Since you know that, and you have the selected topic decided, now it’s time to add in some anecdotes, personal stories or famous quotes that can be easily understood by all.
Keep some parts of your speech focused on the level of
vocabulary that is easily understood by your primary target (the graduates),
especially if you are a specialist in their field.
8. Draw relevant sources
best way to command authority is by citing sources which are well respected by
your target audience. When talking to bankers, quote sources related to that.
When speaking to young persons, quote sources which that age group can easily relate to.
This is an excellent
way to make good use of your audience analysis exercise.
9. Choose stories that are relatable to your Audience
stories that are catchy, stories that relate to your audience. Learn the
required slangs, comments and remarks which spice up the conversation from your
sample audience. Learn to be witty in the field.
The audience analysis exercise also
serves to prevent you from telling stories and jokes which are offensive
to the audience in question.
10. Personalize your call to action
unique. Let your call to action be special,
something that can be easily associated with. Let it have the capacity to spur up
emotions in your audience. This way, your speech has a lasting effect on the
Going back to our example
You can advise almost everyone involved in the audience, critical things
to add would be:
The issue of unemployment right after graduating from university and how
to deal with it
The prospects of those who earned a degree and are now specialists in
The importance of earning a degree
and gaining specialized knowledge in this digital era, where people with no
degrees are becoming billionaires (for the younger ones)
The gift of education and why parents who invest in it are leaving a
legacy for the next generation
The masters of knowledge who keep educating and passing on valuable
insights to the next generation, and how teachers
and learning institutions are the pillars of any civilization
could be more to touch upon, but these are just some ideas of how you could try
and inspire all those attending your speech, and make them feel connected to
you for the rest of their lives.
The importance of conducting an audience analysis before your big day cannot be overemphasized. After all, we would never like to be caught off guard talking to high-schoolers, using a script prepared for phDs.
Another important point I wanted to make before the End of
the article is that as a speaker you must learn to be resourceful. In this post,
we are mainly looking at a guest speaker, who will most likely be given most of
the information about the venue, audience, and expectations by the person/organization
who invited him/her to speak.
You can find yourself in situations where most of this
information is not readily available. For example, you can be invited to attend
an interview, and the only things you know are the company name, and the name
of the person who called you. What will you do in this case?
I am guessing your first thought was to go to the company
page, learn about their mission, vision, and core values, right? That is
correct, but it’s not all you need to do. Remember that it’s not the company
who will be interviewing you, but the person who called, and potentially the
hiring manager for that position.
How can you leverage social media, your personal network, and the person/company who invited you to attend an interview, in getting the necessary information to make sure you ace that interview? What kind of person will you be speaking to? What are they looking for? All this can also be considered conducting your audience analysis.
These are the ten (10) best tips which will assist you in conducting your audience analysis before your speech. So, get on with your practice. Public speaking is not as hard as you may think. Follow these tips, and you get yourself set for that speech.
Thank you for reading this far, I really appreciated it. Let me know in the comments section how you used/use the tips mentioned here, and what other tips and advice you suggest for those getting ready to impress their audience?