Elizabethkuhnke's Blog

Public Speaking tips

Posted on: September 16, 2010

10 Top Tips for Successful Presentations

Feeling nervous before giving a speech is both natural and healthy.  It is caused by an abundance of energy and shows you care about performing well.  Uncontrolled nervousness can work against you.  Your audience will quickly become aware that you are nervous which in turn will make them uncomfortable.  Your message will be lost and all the effort you put into your speech will be wasted.  Here is how you can control that nervous energy and make effective, memorable presentations.

1.  Be Familiar With the Room.  Arrive early, walk around the area where you will be speaking and practise using any equipment you will need

2.  Know Your Audience.  Find out as much as you can about them before you arrive.  What have they come to hear?  What are their concerns and biases?  Greet some of the audience as they arrive.  You’ll find it’s easier to speak to a group of friends than to a group of strangers.

 3.  Know Your Material.  Practise your speech and revise it if necessary.  If you’re not familiar and comfortable with your material you’ll become more nervous and so will your audience.

4.  Breathe.  Abdominal breathing provides a flow of oxygen to the brain and helps you think clearly.  Ease your tension by doing some warm up exercises.  Neck and shoulder rolls and a few tongue twisters will hep calm those nerves.

 5.  Visualise yourself giving your speech.  Imagine yourself speaking calmly, confidently and with commitment.  By visualising yourself as successful you will become successful.

6.  Trust Your Audience.  They want you to do well.  They have come to hear an interesting, stimulating, informative and entertaining speaker.  Satisfy their expectations.

 7.  Never Apologise.  By mentioning your nervousness or apologising for any problems or failures you think you may have with your speech, you may call the audience’s attention to something they hadn’t noticed. 

8.  Focus on the message.  Concentrate on your message and your audience.  You will soon forget about your anxieties and your nervousness will dissipate.

9.  Convert Your Nervousness Into Positive Energy.  Harness your nervous energy and turn it into vitality and enthusiasm.

10.  Gain Experience.  The more you speak in public the more confidant you will feel.  The most important element in public speaking is self-confidence.

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