What is Public Speaking? (PT.2)
Public speaking is important in a business context for several reasons:
- Gathering employees, shareholders, customers, or the public together requires time – there should be a good reason to do so. Therefore, this is an important opportunity to inspire, inform, persuade, and re-excite the audience about a certain idea.
- The public speaking skill of an individual gives an impression of the company. For example, if a CEO delivers a bad speech, the audience may conclude that the company has lackluster leadership, the company is a waste of time, or that the company is not putting in the effort to be successful.
- Good public speaking sparks innovation and opportunities. For example, a well-delivered speech in a board meeting room can inspire organizational change and push the company in another direction. Every major business decision starts with a good public speech or group discussion.
Ways to Improve Public Speaking Skills
With preparation and practice, any individual can be great at public speaking. Here are some things to take into consideration when preparing for your public speech:
- Plan accordingly
Tools such as Monroe’s Motivated Sequence and The Rhetorical Triangle can help plan a public speech. In addition, starting with something interesting, such as storytelling, can be a powerful opener in public speaking. Understand the structure of your public speech and the impact you want it to make on your audience. A strong public speech is not something that is written and delivered in a day – it takes days to prepare and plan an effective oration.
- Practice public speaking
A good speech cannot be delivered without practice. Record yourself delivering your speech and notice your tone of voice, body language, and body stance. When you are practicing, ask yourself the following questions:
- Is your tone of voice controlled?
- Are you putting greater emphasis on important words?
- Are you using a lot of filler words such as “um, er, ah, like”?
- Does your body language correlate with what you are trying to convey?
- Do you look confident?
- Do you have a power stance?
- Engage with the audience
A good oration should not be one-sided. It is important to get your audience engaged. The audience should be able to feel your power and presence. For example, words such as “I think” or “maybe” limit the power that the speaker has. Instead, use words such as “actually” or “in fact.” Introduce pauses in your oration to not only slow yourself down, but to give the audience a chance to think about what you have said. An oration that is delivered too fast incites confusion and ambiguity.
Make It A Champion Day!