Most event planners and managers reach a time where they have to deliver a public speech. It might not be for long, it might not be at a large event but it is speaking publicly, which a surprising number of people are fearful of. Here are some simple tips to prepare yourself for comfortable, successful public speaking.
Just kidding. But before you walk out on a platform or stand up to speak, remember to take a moment to get your bearings. Give yourself time to take a pause and feel the stage. Something as simple as stepping out on stage and taking a deep breath is an action which tells the audience you’re confident and comfortable. Coming out and speaking immediately tells them you’re in a rush to get it over with.
Whilst it might seem counterproductive when you have a large audience, scanning your eyes over them makes the audience aware of how many people there are, creating a less personal effect than you desire. By individually picking out people’s eyes, you connect with them, taking away the sense of authority involved with speaker and listener, and make it feel like a conversation instead.
Have you ever watched the Apple Keynote that announces their latest products and software? There’s a reason they are several hours long and it goes further than the amount of products, research and developments in technology they have to speak about. Tim Cook speaks slowly and with purpose, never tripping up on his words, and the audience hangs on his every word, not only listening but actively focusing on understanding what he is saying.
Too many people make the mistake of being fearful of their audience and feeling paranoid that they’re going to notice every flaw, every slip of the tongue and every crease in your suit jacket. This is not the case. Everyone in the audience wants you to do well, they want you to give them a good experience with lots of insight and they want to come away feeling inspired. They’re rooting for you and are not against you, so feel at one with them and give them the best talk ever.
If you have any public speaking tips you would like to share with us, please do leave a comment!
Also, see our article: ‘Are Corporate Events Unhealthy?‘