Toastmasters – 10 Tips For Successful Public Speaking

by Jing Liu ~ June 7th, 2006. Filed under: Professional Development.

Feeling some nervousness before giving a speech is natural and healthy. It shows you care about doing well. But, too much nervousness can be detrimental. Here’s how you can control your nervousness and make effective, memorable presentations: 1. Know the room. Be familiar with the place in which you will speak. Arrive early, walk around the speaking area and practice using the microphone and any visual aids.

2. Know the audience. Greet some of the audience as they arrive. It’s easier to speak to a group of friends than to a group of strangers.

3. Know your material. If you’re not familiar with your material or are uncomfortable with it, your nervousness will increase. Practice your speech and revise it if necessary.

4. Relax. Ease tension by doing exercises.

5. Visualize yourself giving your speech. Imagine yourself speaking, your voice loud, clear, and assured. When you visualize yourself as successful, you will be successful.

6. Realize that people want you to succeed. Audiences want you to be interesting, stimulating, informative, and entertaining. They don’t want you to fail.

7. Don’t apologize. If you mention your nervousness or apologize for any problems you think you have with your speech, you may be calling the audience’s attention to something they hadn’t noticed. Keep silent.

8. Concentrate on the message — not the medium. Focus your attention away from your own anxieties, and outwardly toward your message and your audience. Your nervousness will dissipate.

9. Turn nervousness into positive energy. Harness your nervous energy and transform it into vitality and enthusiasm.

10. Gain experience. Experience builds confidence, which is the key to effective speaking. A Toastmasters club can provide the experience you need.

VISIT A TOASTMASTERS CLUB! Toastmasters clubs meet in the morning, at noon, and in the evening in approximately 70 countries worldwide. No matter where you live, work, or travel you are more than likely to find a club nearby. If you’d like to learn more about joining Toastmasters, follow the How to Become a Member link.

2 Responses to Toastmasters – 10 Tips For Successful Public Speaking

  1.   Jing

    Thanks for sharing the tips. I will definately check it out on campus.

  2.   Mindy

    Thanks, Linda. They’re great tips and very practical. I especially like #6 and #7. I experienced what #6 describes during a conference I attended just a couple of days ago. I felt so concerned about the low voice of a speaker(it sounded like he was rambling all through his speech) that I wished I could find a volume button somewhere and turned it louder for him 🙂
    And #7 is so true and it’s a common mistake we always tend to make, especially as ESL speakers. A guest professor from Iran came to give a speech to my morning class today. He spoke fairly good English, but he apologized for his English right at the very beginning of the class, which made me more tune in to any grammar mistakes he made in the speech.

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