Public speaking is a multifaceted art form. People take to the podium to preach, teach, influence, perform, entertain and sell. Each of those objectives has its own standards and practices and every speaker has their own style and identity. It’s no wonder so many of us feel that public speaking is beyond us.
If you are one of those who shies away from public speaking because you doubt your abilities, you might get some confidence building tips. There are plenty of them out there. What you look for will be guided mostly by the type of speech or presentation that you are planning. You can find ideas and tips and even video examples of speakers of all types. You never know where you might find the idea that’s right for you.
Content Marketing specialist Joe Puluzzi published a list of 15 tips on his blog recently that are clearly aimed at marketing and sales speakers, but within them there were these tidbits that are applicable for almost any type of speech or presentation.
Smile a lot; use lists; switch the flow and tell stories regularly; and have one main call to action.
Let’s look at each one briefly.
Smile a lot: As Puluzzi writes, “Smiling is contagious.” It also helps the speaker relax. If you smile and you look out at a smiling audience you will have more confidence.
Use lists: Lists are easy ways to organize your thoughts and force you to get to the point quickly and succinctly — both essential to good communication with an audience.
Switch the flow: While lists are great, they can be tedious. Tossing in stories related to some of your key points helps add punch to the speech and serves to reinforce what you are trying to say.
Have one main call to action: When you are speaking for any reason, you are trying to make a point with your audience. Urging your audience to take some action on that key point helps to make it valuable to them.
You might think that you are still going to have a difficult time ever giving a public presentation, but if you follow these tips, you have a better chance. If you don’t have an iPad, think about getting one if you are going to be giving talks regularly. It’s the best tool for preparing and delivering a speech.