Some people are able to stand up and give a speech without a second thought. Others are petrified at the thought of public speaking. You may be a capable public speaker, or it may be one of your biggest fears. In either case, the following advice may be of use to you.
Make sure that you stay focused once you get out there and start talking. Your message will not be received well if you go too far off topic. Do everything you can to stay on the original topic, or you may risk scaring away a large portion of your audience.
If you are preparing for a public speaking engagement in advance, memorize your speech first, before anything else. When you can recite it at any point in point in time, work on delivering it. You will be more comfortable on stage when you have memorized your speech.
If you have to speak publicly, try to keep it at twenty minutes or less. This is the average attention span of most individuals, so speaking for longer than this is going to risk boring them. If you have to speak for longer than this, find some way to change gears in the middle to liven things up.
Never drink before you have to speak in public. People under the influence tend to slur their words or forget them altogether. You may go up to podium and think you have everything under control only to realize you were incorrect. That is why you should skip drinking any type of alcohol.
Always face your audience during your speech. Don’t let yourself become distracted by other activity in the room. You must command the attention of your audience.
Understand who your audience is. If there is a way, find things out about some individuals in the audience. If possible, greet the audience members individually as they come in. By knowing who you are speaking to you, you can gain confidence.
Familiarize yourself with the venue where you will speak. See if your voice can reach the back of the room if there is no microphone. Practice using the equipment before the event. See how you can use visual aids to your advantage. Get a good feel for the best ways to make and hold eye contact with your audience too.
Avoid fidgeting when speaking in front of an audience. Playing with your hair, chewing on your nails and other similar behaviors serve to distract the audience from listening to what you have to say. Instead of remembering your message, they may remember that you continually smoothed your hair. If you find it difficult to stop fidgeting, clasp your hands together in front of you or behind you, or place them on the lectern.
Whether you enjoy public speaking or are afraid of giving speeches, you should have found some useful advice in this article. Being able to speak in public is a very useful skill, so be sure to reflect upon these tips frequently. Doing so can really pay off in many different situations.