Four tips for public speaking
Public speaking is a great skill set to have, regardless of your career path. If public speaking is not something you already do on a regular basis, you will probably need to brush up on your skills. The Direct Selling Education Foundation, a BBB National Partner, offers four helpful tips to help ease the pressure of public speaking.
1. Prepare, prepare, PREPARE! If you have not done the legwork before a public speaking engagement, you may feel flustered, nervous, and insecure. These worries will be evident to your audience, so prepare as much as you possibly can. Write down or type out your content, and rehearse frequently using your notes; also, make adjustments where necessary. If a topic isn't grabbing the attention of your audience, be prepared to pivot or jump ahead in your speech.
2. Show confidence. This is easier than it may seem, especially if you have adequately prepared for your speech. Familiarity with the material, reminding yourself you are a successful leader and the knowledge that you have been given the responsibility to speak in front of a group of people will give you a confidence boost. Take pride in this role by holding your head high, making frequent eye contact, and speaking in a clear, precise voice.
3. Focus on key points, but provide personal stories to balance them. Your main focus should be on the main ideas of your speech. If you can get those across to your audience, the rest will not matter as much. However, it is also important to give your audience a way to relate to you personally. Be sure to provide a few personal stories that will illustrate your main points and demonstrate your expertise on your topic.
4. End with a call to action. You do not want your speech to fall flat because of a flat conclusion. End with a call to action from the audience. Doing so helps give your speech purpose and drives your point home. This also helps your audience figure out how they can begin to implement your ideas.