Effective Public Speaking 22 June 2014
Introduction • Common concerns about public speaking • Preparing for a speech • Using slides • Delivering the speech • Using a microphone
Common concern: “I don’t know how” • Criteria for speaking publicly: Can you open your mouth and have words come out when you want them to? QUALIFIED
Common concern: “Other people are much better speakers than I am” • Like everything else, practice breeds confidence • The best way to be less nervous about public speaking is to do some public speaking
Preparing for a speech • Know what you’re talking about • Research • Double check your memory • Know your audience • Avoid terms your audience won’t know • A speech for children is very different to a speech for a group of professors
Preparing for a speech • Write it down • What to write • Key points • Word for word • What to write it on • Cards • Sheets • Higher tech
Preparing for a speech • Stick to the time limit • Rather too little than too much • Be ready to cut sections out if needed • For longish speeches, time yourself • Repeat your important points • Add humour in moderation • Summarise what you’ve just said
Using slides If you’re using slides: • Highlighted points • Relevant to that part of the speech • Keep animations consistent and low key • Dark on light is most easily read • Avoid detailed images
Only put points of interest and items you want to emphasise on your slides. Don’t fill the slide with text or write down what you’re going to be saying. It’s distracting to read a slide while someone is talking, especially if they then end up reading it word for word anyhow. Rather just highlight a few key points and leave the slide up while you talk about that section of your speech.
Using Slides • Only use dark text on light backgrounds • Don’t use flashing coloured text or light colours • Don’t make the text too small
Delivering the speech • Slow down! • Pause, but in reasonable places • Not to preschool story-time speed • Use your whole voice • Look at your audience • Use your hands if you wish • If you fumble or lose your place, take your time
Using a microphone • The microphone’s job is to allow everyone to hear your normal voice • Microphones don’t bite • Don’t turn your head away from the mic • The microphone is always listening!
Remember • If you can speak, you can speak publicly • Everyone makes mistakes • Practice helps • Know what you’re talking about • Keep slides simple and easy to read • Slow down! • Talk directly into a mic with your normal voice