Often, we think of great speakers as people who are personable, funny, and extroverted. Just because you might be introverted, doesn’t mean you can’t feel empowered when you deliver a speech.
But it’s introverts who spend a great deal of time studying the material and thinking through the details beforehand. In this way, introversion becomes a bit of a superpower and makes those who deliver the speech just as empowered as those who can naturally work a crowd.
So to keep your audience engaged and work through the anxiety of speaking in public, keep these six tips in mind the next time you deliver a speech before a crowd:
It warms up the audience and captures their attention. People relate to stories and they’ll relate to the topic as well if you introduce it with a narrative.
You know your topic, organize it well. Put together blocks of information you want to use for each section without trying to over plan the rest. There is no need to memorize the material like it’s a script for your 8th grade play.
Know where the talk is going next and have a smooth transition planned out. Everything else is going to be more conversational and basic. Again, when you are speaking in public, you’re talking, not memorizing
Practice until you feel confident and then practice about 20 times more. Speaking in front of a crowd is scary and unnerving and you want to be so comfortable with your flow that you almost forget you’re standing in front of a crowd.
We always speed up our speech when we are nervous. When you walk to the front of the room (or on stage even), take a moment to breathe a full breath. Give space between your sentences and practice taking a beat.
We tend to focus on what we did wrong. For all the practice and hard work you put into your preparation, there will always be one or two places where you fumbled or rushed. If you give the speech again, correct it. There is no need to beat yourself up over one speech. Accept beforehand that this is a learning opportunity and you will make mistakes. If you forgive yourself before things happen you’ll feel more confident shaking it off when they do.
Employ these tactics the next time you stand up before a crowd and you will find you deliver a better speech. And if you are looking for practice tips, be sure to check these out for additional pointers.
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