History of Credit Unions - NEW
Public speaking tips
According to a recent Wall Street Journal article, one of top executives’ greatest fears is public speaking.
Public speaking is an art few people come by naturally. Your best bet is to take a specially designed course to help you become a better speaker. In the meantime, here are some pointers to keep in mind.
When speaking publicly
· Speak publicly whenever the occasion arises for practice. Practice on small audiences (social clubs, small groups of employees) first, and work your way up to larger ones.
· If you get to choose the topic of your speech, tailor it to the audience you will be speaking to. Find out as much about the audience as possible before addressing it.
· Talk about something that you are interested in. If you are not enthusiastic about what you have to say, no one else will be.
· Credibility is critical. Your audience will scan every personal detail about you for clues of your character and temperament. Eyes, gestures, and even posture will be included in the judgment.
· Look at the individual members of your audience. Let them catch a glimpse of your eyes – it makes them feel included and they will listen more closely.
· Never read a speech; work from a detailed outline. Seeming spontaneous is the highest art of speaking. Moreover, focusing on your message instead of a bunch of words is the finest compliment to your audience.
· Speak loudly and clearly. Pay careful attention to the ends of your sentences – do not let them drop off.
· Rehearse your speech before you give it – not just to yourself but to someone else whose opinion you value. Good speakers practice a new speech 10 times out loud.
· Say articles, prepositions, conjunctions, and auxiliary verbs very quickly. Pronounce nouns and verbs with deliberation and strength.
· Arrive a bit early and get to know your audience. Even if you cannot chat with everyone in the room beforehand, you will at least feel that you are talking with other fallible humans and that will put you more at ease.
When writing a speech
· Open with an anecdote which will have meaning to the particular audience you are addressing.
· Do not overuse quotes – It will sound like you never think of anything original on your own.
· Make sure your speech is organized and free of irrelevant information. Your opening paragraph and your closing notes should be tied together in a successful speech.
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