The first time I saw Obama give a speech, it was hard to believe that a man can attain such levels of eloquence. As I sat listening, the passion, knowledge and unspoken amazement swept through me- if was ever going to give a speech, it was going to be in the similitude of the influence which his speech exudes.
Whether we are traders, laymen, learned men, clergy men, it is without respect to trade or vocation that one day, we would have to stand before men, many of whom are learned and give a speech but whether we excel at driving our message across with enough passion to compel people to move is another thing.
Being that we live and work in an age where information rules and drives economies, effective communication has become an essential tool for survival. Problem is many people would almost faint when called upon to speak to a group of people, no matter how small that group may be. In fact, in places like the US, it is believe that its fear is only exceeded by the fear of death itself. I have explained in details below, a few tips to becoming a good public speaker.
1. Know Your Subject Thoroughly.
In this side of the Sahara, we are known for always employing shallow approach to really deep things. If you must speak, then you must really know what you are going to talk about. Don’t make the mistake of dabbling into giving a speech on any subject you don’t know at least above average about.
The reason for this remains that someone who knows better than you may be a part of the audience and if he comes up with carefully engineered question that throws you off balance, you have yourself to blame for it. Don’t forget that people have their phones and can google the topic you are talking about and try to see if they can make a fool of you. Never give them that opportunity. Even if it’s a five minute talk, learn more than necessary, be prepared because that will boost your confidence.
2. Be Confident.
Many times, it is not really the speech itself that sells, it is the confidence of the speaker. I have a friend who has this cast-iron confidence that he can give a speech on a subject he knows nothing about and he even has a way of making you contribute your knowledge in the process; at the end, he looks like the professor, but his strength lies in his confidence. No matter what happens, even if you forgot the main points, even if you misfired or gave wrong information, no matter what happens, keep your confidence all through the speech.
3. Dress Well.
A fashion house’s slogan goes like; there is a difference between being dressed and being well dressed. When we look smart, we tend to feel smart and be confident. Before anyone would listen to you, they will first of all look at you and if your dressing causes misgivings to arise in their heart concerning your person, then your trouble is doubled. Although it helps your case to dress well, do not overdress.
4. Be Ready.
Write your speech out, read it as many times as possible. Rehearse it in your room, in bed, before the mirror, take your time to learn it, if possible memorize it. After that, write out the main points and see if you can fix the body by just looking at the key points. Practice it until it becomes a part of you.
5. Be There Early.
One easily neglected factor that affects the quality of speeches the world over is the arrival time of the presenter. If you have to dash into the venue long before the program had started, chances are that you’ll be mentally disorganized and that alone can potentially ruin your whole speech. So be there early, walk round on the presentation stage and present to yourself, pray and you are well on your way to an eventful speech.Five Tips to Becoming a Good Public Speaker by ngcareers