Every speech requires different speech delivery. And every speaker has a different style. But these tips are relevant to pretty much everyone.
I hope you find them useful and you remember them at your next speech delivery.
- Talk slowly. If it takes 12 minutes, not nine, it doesn’t matter at all.
- Pause for effect. Your audience need time to digest the story before they get the punchline. So give them time to get it.
- Emphasise key words. Imagine you’re telling a story without a script. You’ll say some words louder than most. And change your inflection on others.
- Practise. However well written the speech, you don’t want to be ‘reading’ it. Know it well enough that it just becomes a safety net.
- Gesticulate. Body language is vital. If you’re addressing someone, look at them. Use your arms to emphasise a point.
- Be put off by a heckle. You can pre-prepare a couple of responses to a noisy member of the crowd.
- Give in to the shakes. Paste your speech onto card. Or rest it somewhere you can see it. Find out if there’s a lectern. Holding a shaky piece of paper will put you off before you get going.
- Get drunk beforehand. It may feel like the easy way to get through it, but it won’t seem so sensible afterwards.
- Just read it out. Great material is irrelevant if it’s delivered badly. You’ll be much more natural when you’re not reading straight from the page.
Even if I haven’t written your speech or presentation, I’d be delighted to arrange a session to help you deliver it. I can also arrange for your speech to be professionally printed onto A6 card and delivered to you (all for £20+VAT within the UK). Please let me know if you’d like some help.