Presenting a speech effectively is one of the keys to success in any workplace. Whether it’s a small meeting, a boardroom presentation or a large-scale conference, being able to communicate your thoughts and ideas with clarity is essential for business situations.
In many cases, what you say is not as important as how well you say it – but there are times when your content takes top-billing, such as when you’re asked to pitch your business or sell your product.
Professional public speakers are often quick to acknowledge the key role that fear plays in public speaking, but there is no need for you to succumb to it – with preparation and practice, anyone can improve their presentation skills. So how do you go about it?
Tips on how to present a speech effectively
It’s All About the Message! Here are great speech presentation tips to help you deliver your speech efficiently:
- Prepare what you want to say in advance – this is your opportunity to get creative and think through exactly what you would like to say so that it doesn’t sound robotic or unnatural during the speech itself.
- Speak from the heart, not from notes – if there’s something personal about yourself or an event, don’t be afraid of sharing it with others because people respond well when they see someone has genuine passion for their project. It also helps those listening feel more connected when they can relate to parts of your story too!
- Use gestures – anything that will help capture attention such as making eye contact (or looking away from time to time), or using hand gestures to emphasise a point.
- Be concise – the worst thing you can do is ramble on and then lose people’s attention, so make sure what you say has meaning that will interest them.
- Walk around when possible – it helps break up one lengthy speech into smaller chunks which are easier for people to digest and also means they’ll be more engaged with your presence too!
- Share personal stories about yourself – if there’s something interesting about your life journey, don’t hold back from sharing because this type of storytelling makes an event much more memorable for others. It also lets them feel connected to the speaker too!
- Keep eye contact with listeners – if you’re talking to a small group of people, make eye contact with each one individually so they don’t feel like you’re only speaking to them.
- Avoid going over the time limit – it’s very easy for speeches that are engaging and interesting to run longer than expected, but try not to go past your allocated time (or at least have an alternative ending in mind). It can be frustrating for others who need their chance to speak or hear!
- Practice beforehand – even if this is just saying what you want to say out loud by yourself, practicing will help ensure there’s no mistakes when giving the talk live too.
- Be enthusiastic – even if it’s not a topic that excites you, try and put your heart into what you are saying because people will sense when someone is honest with themselves. It also helps the audience feel more connected too.
- Wear something comfortable – this one doesn’t need explaining but sometimes speakers forget they have to stand up for long periods of time without getting their feet tired or in some cases wear heels which can be uncomfortable after a while!
- Put on some music before starting – find out what kind of background music would make listeners feel at ease so that there isn’t any awkward silence whilst waiting for the speaker to start (or stop).
- Practice breathing – before starting to speak, think about how you would like your breaths to be paced. If this kind of thing feels natural then it should feel even better when giving the speech too!
- Use a timer – there’s nothing worse than not feeling in control so having something that will let you know precisely when time is up (and give you some extra leeway if needed!) can help take away any anxiety and make things more relaxed for everyone.
- Be genuine – people are very good at sensing sincerity or dishonesty from others so if someone doesn’t believe what they’re saying, chances are no one else will either. And don’t worry – just because somebody says something different doesn’t mean they’re being disingenuous.
- Have some water – Nothing worse than getting dry mouth right before you’re about to speak!
In conclusion, it is important to remember that the key ingredient for a good speech is finding what drives someone and then speaking from the heart. It’s also very helpful to know how long time you are allotted so that there’s enough time left over if needed!