5 Steps to Becoming a Better Public Speaker
Public speaking is a great way to build your business by educating the community on how you can serve it. Motivational speaker and speaker trainer Annette Lynch shares these steps to help you overcome nerves and engage your target audience.
Photo: Courtesy of Annette Lynch
1. Prepare Mind and Body
Being prepared will give you confidence, so have your presentation completely ready and rehearsed, and then show up on time. Have a small pre-presentation routine to get you in the right state of mind: deep breathing, stretching or a dance to take the tension out of your body. Positive self-talk can relax the mind; “It’s great to be here” and “I’m ready and excited” are much better than focusing on how nervous you are.
2. Have a Clear Message
Be clear on the important points you want your audience to take away. Remember that less is more, so limit your points to three and then fill your presentation with interesting stories. Give relevant examples and analogies, and share your personal story to help the audience understand your important points.
3. Be Yourself
As much as people might like an entertainer, don’t struggle to be something you are not. Find your style for speaking and be your natural self. You will come across with integrity and the audience will more easily connect with you.
4. Use More than Words
Realize you communicate as much with your body and voice as you do with words. Gesture with purpose and use pauses and pace to emphasize your message.
5. Use Feedback
At the end, distribute feedback slips that ask these questions: Was the information useful? Did it hold your attention? Get similar feedback from friends, colleagues or a speaking coach so you can continue to improve what you say and how you say it.
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