LET’S FOCUS ON THESE THREE IDEAS:
- Develop ideas in your own words. What does it mean?
- Have a list of critical points to develop in your speech. Think about how these points tie into your overall message.
- Develop each key point in your own words as they come to you naturally.
- Avoid trying to memorize the whole speech verbatim.
- Avoid reading the whole speech from paper or phone.
- While delivering your speech, think of meaningful eye contact with at least a few in your audience, if not all. You make eye contact with a person just long enough so that person feels a personal connection to you. Do this with many people in the audience, if not all. When you do that, public speaking becomes one-on-one speaking with people in attendance, one person at a time..
- Make a conscious attempt to deliver the message with vocal variety.
- Change in projection
- Change in pace of your speech delivery
- Vary your pitch
- Pauses to take deep breathes, pauses when you are trying to develop words (no need for filler words 🙂 )
- Stretch critical words in your message for emphasis
Deven had given this speech below at his club in Orange, Paul Revere Toastmasters, to record video on this. It has more on the three ideas, and specific things to try with each:
[Deven’s note: While watching the video recording of my speech, I noticed that my eye contact didn’t come through for someone watching it now. This room set up is such that the width of the room is almost four times as much as depth. When I speak, there are more people to my sides than in the front. If I were to do it again, I’d look at Mark much more, or more specifically, at his iPhone, so the video shows my eye contact. 🙂
How about hand gestures? I didn’t try anything specifically for the hand gestures.
While practicing the three things, you naturally develop hand gestures over time. Every person should and probably would have his/her gestures. There are specific techniques about making your hand gestures full/big and holding them for impact, useful to develop awareness about it. Use feedback loop at toastmasters to cultivate a mindset for hand gestures, try the ideas, you will build your body language in time.
- Deliver your message in a clear direction. Organize the message with clarity. Use our speech preparation framework (click to download – opens in a new tab).
- Read and think about your project objectives. Toastmasters manuals have explained each project well, take your time to understand it all, absorb it, and then most importantly, try to use it in your speech preparation and delivery.
- Prepare and make a sincere attempt.
FOOD FOR THOUGHT:
- Stay true to your natural self when you speak, no need to pretend to be someone else.
- Be vulnerable. Show, express, channel your emotions.
- Trying is all we ask at toastmasters. Give it a shot. There are no judgments here, neither from your peers nor from the coaches.
- Maintain your speech bank. When an idea comes up to you, jot it down. It will become an excellent repository of topics for you. Keep it with you at every Toastmasters meeting.
- Think about your next speech now; no need to wait till the last week. Think about potential topics, what you would/could do for it, …etc. It will do wonders for your confidence and comfort level.
- Have fun with your speech; it is your speech topic, after all. You can take it wherever you like.