2. We should know how to stress our point.
A speech, like a song has a variety of notes, tempo and loudness. A
singer who just screeches all the way from the beginning to the end will
not be listened to, no matter how talentedly-highpitched she is. Same
with delivering a speech. We ought to know when to stay silent, when to
pause, when to speak loudly, when to whisper, when to speak fast, when
to slow down, etc. or else we would sound monotonous and the main points
of our speech would not be understood or remembered well.
3. We should be humble.
We should admit it when we make mistakes during our speech and to
apologize for that mistake. There are times we may forget a certain
term. Instead of pausing for a long time or using a word we’re not sure
of, it’s better to ask our listeners. Do not be ashamed to do this.
Listeners would appreciate your humility and even relate to you more
because they know you are just like them, a human capable of making
mistakes and forgetting things, a great or famous person, yet, still
human, like them, and this makes the listeners love you more.
4. We should develop a clean sense of humor.
Relating to the above mentioned tip on humility, it’s not embarrassing
to make mistakes or forget things especially when you have a good sense
of humor to save the day. Instead of that instant becoming one of your
most embarrassing experiences, it might even become one of your speech’s
highlights depending on how you carry yourself. Let me point out
though, that it’s a clean sense of humor I’m talking about, because I’ve
heard some speeches before that relied on toilet humor and/or ‘for
adults only jokes’ (you know what I mean)and the listeners, me included
were not amused at all. Some might even be offended and walk out. So, be
careful with the jokes, okay?
5. We should talk to the listeners not just with our lips but our eyes too.
Even if we have a prepared speech (which speakers usually don’t
memorize), we should not glue our eyes on it. It’s probably better if we
just write outlines of our speech and not the word per word thing, for
we might just be tempted to look at it more. If it’s an outline, we
wouldn’t rely on that sheet of paper before us. Instead of looking on
the prepared speech sheet, we should be looking at our listeners. Don’t
just focus on one though (even if there’s a really gorgeous guy or girl
in the audience who caught your attention). Look from left to right or
right to left slowly; look at nearly everyone. Look them in the eyes,
try to see if they understand your point. Let’s not look at trees or the
stage’s ceiling or floor. We are talking to the people, so it’s them we
ought to look at. Let’s make sure though that the way we look at them
is not in any way offending though. And what we’re saying should be in
harmony with how we look at them.
6. We should use our gestures well. If
you’re a conductor in an orchestra, I’d understand why you have a lot
of hand gestures (just kidding!^^), but if not, minimize it. We don’t
want the audience to be distracted with our unnecessary movements while
we talk. Our gestures should be governed by what we say and what we want
to point out. We should avoid having a memorized gesture like children
are taught when reciting a poem in grade school. (we’re not kids
anymore, so it’s not cute anymore^^)
7. We should use appropriate language.
There’s no need to use terribly deep-no one-else-has-heard-of terms or
expressions to impress the listeners. Instead of gaining admirers, we
might even lose them. Speak with simplicity and sincerity. Speak your
audience’s language, meaning, make your language appropriate for their
level of understanding and appreciation.
8. We should connect to our
listeners. Let’s not speak as if we’re on a stage in an empty hall. We
should talk to them. Some speakers even go to the point of going down
the stage and talking to individuals, making the audience feel that they
are important and that it’s not a one-way communication speech, but a
discussion and that their thoughts matter. We don’t always have to do
this. It depends on the occasion, the listeners and the time allotted
for our speech. I would just like to point out that speakers who make
their audience feel that he is not the center of attention but them (the
listeners) win their respect more.
9. We should believe in what we are saying.
If we don’t sound convinced by what we say, we can’t expect anyone to
believe it. In the first place, there’s no need to be shy when asked to
speak in public because the fact that you are asked to speak to the
audience already means that you have authority in that area you will be
talking about, and that those people already believe in you to begin
with. So, let’s prove them right and not waste their trust.
should be able to inspire our listeners to take action. This skill is
probably not that easy to develop, but it’s the skill that separates
good speakers from great ones. Why? Because even if people enjoyed our
speech and listened to it, if whatever action we expect from them
afterwards was not realized, then, our talk might have been in vain. It
might have been good for the moment, but not one that will be remembered
or change lives.
I hope you learned a lot from these tips. I
will write more tips and articles to share with you soon. If there are
topics regarding English you would like me to discuss, kindly let me
know. I’ll see what I can do for you.