Many of us are often called upon to give speeches. I do it on a regular basis and find it quite fun. Others of us are not too keen to get up in front of an audience, whether at a conference, a customer presentation, or at an end-of-year employee gathering.
1. Never eat a banana immediately before a speech. For that matter, avoid dairy products, too. Both contribute to a distracting need to clear one’s throat during a presentation.
Here are my tips to add to her list.
- Find a friendly face in the audience. You should “work the room”, of course, but in so doing you might find a face or two that are frowning. Don’t take it personally! Find a friendly face and keep coming back to that person for encouragement.
- Always keep a mint or hard candy with you at the podium. Sometimes a sip of water doesn’t clear the “frog” in your throat!
- Minimize the number of bullets on each slide. No one can read a slide with too many words on it! Three bullets of short phrases are all that is necessary.
- Include something humorous at strategic points during your speech. A light laugh is always good to keep people focused!
- If you are comfortable in front of the crowd, get out from behind the
podiumlecturn! A bit of wandering makes your presentation more visually interesting. (I know, C. B. had this one, too, but I think it is worth mentioning again.)
- Turn off your lavaliere microphone if you go to the bathroom before your speech. ‘Nuff said.
All you public speakers out there, what are your top tips for a successful speech? Add them to the comments or to C.B.’s post, and let us know what makes you shine!