The art of public speaking from one of its masters

The careers of most executives advance or stall based on how
well they communicate. Public speaking performances are the riskiest of all,
but they also give you a chance to make a very big impact. Being a sought-after
public speaker gives you and your company a cachet that would otherwise be
absent. One of the best places to look for guidance in these matters is the
late Jack Valenti, former CEO of the Motion Picture Society of America. Here is
Valenti’s expert advice on becoming a confident and powerful public speaker.

Millions of people consider public speaking a fate worse
than death. But if you occupy any type of leadership position it’s inevitable
that you’re going to be asked to stand up before a group – large or small – to
deliver a speech.

 

The careers of most executives advance or stall based on how
well they communicate in a variety of forms. Public speaking performances are
the riskiest of all, but they also give you a chance to make a very big impact.
Being a sought-after public speaker gives you and your company a cachet that
would otherwise be absent.

 

When you do speak publicly you want your voice to be brimming
with confidence and power. One of the best places to look for guidance in these
matters is the late Jack Valenti, former chief of
staff to President Lyndon Johnson but
better know in the latter portion of his life as chairman and CEO of the Motion
Picture Society of America
.

 

Suave and silver-tongued, Valenti was renowned for his
public speaking abilities. Whether donned in a tuxedo for the Academy Awards or in a basic
business suit for his many appearances on the rubber-chicken circuit, he always
presented himself and his thoughts flawlessly.

 

Valenti was so well known for his talents at the podium that
he wrote a book on the subject titled Speak Up with Confidence.

 

It might surprise you to know that Jack Valenti preached that
20 minutes was the absolute maximum for any speech. That’s quite a contrast to
the politicians and keynote speakers of all stripes who routinely devour a full
hour of the audience’s time. Valenti believed in economy. It is best to leave
an audience wanting more, not glancing at their watches and negotiating with
their bladders.

 

Valenti also memorized all of his speeches, just as stage
actors commit their scripts to memory, so he could enunciate them without using
notes.

 

He was full of many good ideas for turning people into
effective public speakers. Here are some of his core suggestions:

 

 

Implicit in all this advice is Jack Valenti’s steadfast
belief that being thoroughly prepared is the best insurance policy against
stage fright and poor performance.

 

How do you prepare for public speaking engagements? How do
you delivery a punch to your audience? Let us know in the comment field below.

 

Why you should do Public Speaking Courses

When you think of speaking in public, what words or feelings come to mind? Do they include anxiety, a fear of breakdown and of the audience, also a sense of vulnerability? Those are all common even in many people who speak publicly frequently. 

Luckily, there are Public Speaking Courses that will enable you to replace these horrible feelings and expectations with good ones like excitement, assurance and control by letting you develop skills and allowing you to express your superb presence.

Well designed and delivered public speaking courses teach you the key skills and give you the guidelines you need to become a confident, innovative, relaxed and influential speaker who gets their message across. As importantly though, as an extra advantage and a major aspect of this development and learning process, people often also discover the enjoyment of being in the moment and involved with, and referring to, the audience.

Since everyone is different, and these differences are a part of what makes us truly good speakers, there are a few possibilities when it comes to public speaking courses. This gives you the comfort to select the very best match, whether you’re new to public speaking or more experienced. The courses build confidence and skills and turn people into authentic and powerful speakers.

These programs must cover various areas. One of the first areas is the important one of how to establish a connection with the audience. Without that it is difficult to get a message across. An authentic and successful speaker interacts and connects with their listeners instead of giving a performance. By the end of a course like this you will know how to develop that critical relationship, to find your style and voice and interact with the listeners in a positive and real way. As a result, course participants feel more confident and able to talk with clarity and free of notes.

Public speaking courses also look at how to effectively and genuinely communicate your message. That’s a very vital part and the whole point of speaking in the first place! A lot of courses, usually the advanced ones, have a more specific target and explore issues such as one-on-one interactions, adapting communications for particular audiences at every organisational level, coping with a difficult or hostile audience and successfully negotiating the question and answer session.

While a lot of public speaking courses are group based and provide the advantages that go with that, there is also the possibility to enjoy one-on-one, private coaching. This affords the ability to look at areas of concern and strength that are unique to you. They are often aimed at more experienced speakers who want to deal with something specific or fine-tune their expertise.

It does not matter what industry you are in or what job you do, if you need to speak publicly, Public Speaking Courses are an investment and therefore will be money very well spent. To know additional information, contact 020 7112 9194.

Copyright @ Presence Training

Public Speaking For Executives: Embracing the Challenge

If you’re climbing the ladder of success, you’re going to need the right equipment.

If you’re an executive looking to influence others, gain attention for your ideas or assume a leadership role, sooner or later, you’re going to have to embrace the challenge of public speaking. You might have the best ideas, own a terrific track record of achievement and be recognized for your abilities, but if you can’t communicate well, you’re limiting what you can achieve and how effective you can be.

Anyone who has ever listened to an effective public speaker can have little doubt about the power this one skill carries. Even if we don’t work with the person day to day or know much about him or her, we can be mightily impressed with their ideas, knowledge or passion. Most readily, this can be done by listening to a person speak in public. We can come to understand a point of view and be motivated to follow a call to action. Executives with the ability get up and hold the attention of others through the power of the spoken word, find themselves rewarded and their abilities acknowledged.

Yet for all its power, many executives dread the thought of speaking in public, even to a room with friendly colleagues. Often, it’s because they fear they aren’t good at it or will be judged lacking. Executives who don’t embrace the challenge to speak in public however are missing out on the single greatest opportunity of their professional careers. What other skill can enhance reputations, prove leadership abilities, and cast you in the spotlight, all in the matter of minutes?

Here then are some brief tips to help those reluctant executives get started on embracing the challenge:  

1.) Start  SmallLook for public speaking opportunities that are lower risk for you; small groups of your peers for instance. Volunteer whenever possible to deliver findings or present data. Simply volunteering for the job will set you apart from most and help get you accustomed to the process.

2.) Assume good intentions.

Assume those you’re speaking or presenting to want to hear what you have to say. Remember to structure your presentation from the audience’s point of view and you will keep their attention and good will.

3.) Preparation is the key to confidence

Don’t ever “wing it”. Respect your audience enough to prepare well. Knowing your material is vital to a successful speech or presentation.

4.) Prepare by mimicking the real thing as closely as possible.

You’re going to deliver a speech orally, so why wouldn’t you practice that way? That means you can’t simply read your material to yourself—you have to say it, as you would. Try on different phrasing; different words or intonations. If you’re going to be standing behind a podium, find one to practice with. If you’re going to be using a microphone; gets some practice using one. Speaking in a conference room?  Try and find a similar one to practice in. Take some of the fear out of public speaking by getting to know the physical surroundings you’ll be speaking in.

5.) Get some honest feedback

If you can’t get professional help, ask someone to watch your practice delivery. Videotape your performance and play it back for someone whose opinion you respect. Ask specific questions and listen to the answers. Are you maintaining enough eye contact? Does your voice sound natural? Do you sound and look like you believe what you’re saying?

6.) Show no fear

Your audience more than likely has absolutely no idea you’re nervous. Why broadcast it? Never announce your nerves or reluctance to be there. Be aware as well of signaling your nervousness through distracting movements such as fidgeting. Lack of eye contact cam be a telltale sign as well. Be comfortable with the silence by deliberately building in pauses after you’ve talked about key points and by avoiding “fillers” such as “ums” and “ahs.”

7.)Remember to breathe.

When we are fearful, our bodies react. To consciously counteract that physical fear impulse, take several long, deep breaths, letting the air out slowly. Let your body know you’re staying put. Don’t be upset if you realize you are nervous. You can put that nervous energy to good use by channeling it for a heightened performance that’s filled with energy and passion..   

Remember, this is an opportunity to share your expertise. Seize that opportunity and let your confidence in your information carry you through. Soon enough, your performance itself will mirror the confidence you feel in your subject and you’ll find yourself reaping the rewards of being a powerfully effective public speaker.

Public Speaking 101: Overcoming Your Fear of Public Speaking

One of the greatest fears among people is public speaking.  Some people are natural on a stage, relaxed, in control, comfortable.  But countless others are terrified at the thought of even standing in front of a crowd, much less talking to an audience.  But this stage fright does not have to hinder us when those times come that we do need to address a crowd.  In fact, that fear, if properly used, can actually help us become more exceptional communicators.

According to Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, “…stage fright arises in a mere anticipation of a performance, often a long time ahead. It has numerous manifestations: fluttering or pounding heart, tremor in the hands and legs, diarrhea, facial nerve tics, dry mouth. Stage fright may be observed in people of all experience and background, from beginners to professionals.”

Stage fright, or fear of public speaking, isn’t only found in beginners or inexperienced speakers.  We all get nervous, and if we don’t learn to control those nerves, we can struggle in our quest to effectively impact our audience.  So how can we use our fear to help us instead of hinder us?  Here are some tips:

1.      Know your speech inside and out.  If you show up very well prepared, it will take much of the fear out of your talk.  Lack of preparation is scary.  I sometimes have a dream where I am walking on a stage to speak, having not prepared anything.  I wake up fearful, because for me…that’s frightening.  Most speakers are at their best when they are most prepared, so do your homework, come ready (really ready), and your fear will lessen.

2.      Use your fear to make you better.  I actually think nervousness is a good thing.  Butterflies in your stomach shows that you care.  It says, “I want to do my best here.”  Show me a speaker who never feels the butterflies and I’ll show you a speaker who doesn’t care whether or not they make an impact.  I use my nervous energy to make me better. 

For starters, I use it to motivate me to prepare as well as I can.  I know how scary it is to take the stage unprepared, so I make sure that doesn’t happen by pushing myself.  I also use the energy by actually feeding it during my presentation.  I turn the nervousness into enthusiasm; enthusiasm in my words, gestures, and overall presentation.  This makes me more effective, because enthusiasm is contagious, and audiences respond to it very well.

3.      Start off right.  I use a funny story (usually something really stupid that I’ve done) to kick things off.  This does a few things for me.  First, it relaxes me because I’m telling a personal story that I know quite well.  Second, it relaxes the audience because they’re laughing.  Third, when I use a story that illustrates how big of an idiot I can be from time to time, it builds a lot of rapport with my audience.  They can relate to me, and if my story is stupid enough, it makes the audience feel better about themselves.  They think, “At least I don’t do as many dumb things as this guy.”  That makes me more likeable, and knowing this helps me relax.

For example, late one night, while in the middle of an ice storm, my electricity went out.  So I got in my car, drove on the ice-covered roads to Wal-Mart, and bought an electric heater so I could stay warm while the power was out.  It wasn’t until on the way home that it hit me: I just bought an electric heater to keep me warm while my electricity is out!  I’m the stupidest person on earth.

When I tell that story, my audience has a great time with it, because they can relate.  We all do dumb things!  I’m willing to use those experiences to help me onstage.

One quick tip: If you are going to use humor, go all the way with it.  Don’t try to do it half-heartedly; you will fail.  Go all out.  Someone said, “If you’re going to be seen, be seen.”  In other words, if you’re going to jump in, then really make a splash.

4.      Never tell your audience you are afraid.  I saw a guy deliver a talk recently in which he was so nervous that he was physically shaking.  Everyone in the audience felt bad for him.  But then he made it worse by actually telling us he was really nervous.  This was the wrong thing to do for two reasons.  First, we already knew that…the shaking gave him away.  And second, when your audience can tell you are nervous, and you reinforce it by saying as much; you really put your audience on edge, as well.  This is one of the worst things you can do because you want your audience to relax, and if they are too busy worrying about your nervousness, they won’t relax, and you’ll struggle to impact them. 

Get on the stage and give it your best.  Know your speech inside and out, use your fear to make you better by using that energy as an enthusiastic delivery, start off strong, and never tell your audience how nervous you really are.  Following these four tips will help you overcome your fear of public speaking and allow you to more effectively communicate.  Stage fright can be a thing of the past for you.  Happy speaking!

Can Fear of Public Speaking Actually Make You a Better Speaker?

Few elements of modern life can be so detrimental for one’s ability for self-improvement and success than “Fear of Public Speaking.” Surveys indicate, however, that this is the is the number one source of apprehension in the United States. The first survey to point this out appeared in the October 7 1973 issue of the Sunday Times of London. The findings have been verified by countless other surveys and studies in subsequent years.

The Times survey found that 41% of the 3000 respondents listed “fear of public speaking” as their number one fear, while 19% listed “death.”

For the businessperson, either in a small company or a large corporation, the ability to speak coherently and persuasively is a vital skill, but this “fear of speaking” holds many otherwise competent people back.

This can be a disaster for the sales person, but it need not be so. Speaking skills are easy to acquire once the fear is controlled. Note that i said “controlled,” not overcome.

In the hundreds of executive workshops I have conducted, I have found a high percentage of intelligent people apprehensive at the prospect of giving a presentation.

Is this fear unique to modern life? Probably not. Pericles, the great orator and statesman of ancient Greece, observed about 2500 years ago that

” Those who can think, but cannot express
what they think, place themselves at the
level of those who cannot think.”

One of the fundamental reasons smart people cannot “express what they think” is the paralyzing fear of speaking in public.

If you suffer from that anxiety, rest assured you are in the main stream of the American public. In this article, I’ll provide advice on how to make this nervousness work to your advantage so that you actually become a better public speaker because of your fear.

DON’T KILL THE BUTTERFLIES

Among the physical manifestations of nervousness can be a queasiness frequently labeled “butterflies in the stomach.” Someone in the field of speech training once said you didn’t want to kill the butterflies; instead, get them flying in formation.

I certainly agree with the basic premise of controlling, not eliminating, nervousness. I find it disappointing when colleagues and competitors in the field of presentation skills training promise that if you buy their book or attend their workshop, you will never again fear speaking in public.

That is absolute rubbish. It causes people to make overcoming “Fear of speaking” their main objective. Their objective should be to frame and deliver their message in such a way that they persuade their audience to adopt the point of view they are advocating.

I have seen many nervous speakers do an excellent job because they believed in their message, and I have seen speakers so calm it seemed rigor mortis had set in. Their calmness made them appear indifferent, and they bombed.

You want to be somewhat nervous. It releases the adrenaline that gets you “pumped,” that shows passion and enthusiasm. It is the same as the pre-game jitters of athletes which allows them to convert nervousness to energy.

Presenters must make the same conversion into that positive energy which demonstrates the presenter’s belief in his or her message.

A TRIO OF FEARS AND THEIR ANTIDOTES

1. FEAR OF THE UNKNOWN
As human beings, we tend to be more afraid of what we don’t know. For presenters, the audience is the great unknown. You will wonder: “What do they expect of me? Do they know much more about the subject than I do, etc.?” You will have the tendency to magnify the knowledge of the audience at the expense of your own knowledge.

ANTIDOTE:
Convert unknown to known. The more information you gather on the audience and the more intensive your practice session, the more the unknown will be converted to known.

Guard against procrastination, however, because we tend to accomplish what is in our comfort zone, and put off more difficult tasks, such as systematic audience intelligence collection and rigorous practice. Bite the bullet, and you will have those fears of the unknown dramatically reduced.

2. FEAR OF FORGETTING.
When told they will have to make a presentation, most people are consumed by the fear their mind will go blank, and they will stand in front of the audience without the slightest idea of what they are to say.

They play it safe, write out their presentation, and read it verbatim to the audience. This guarantees failure People in an audience want to listen to a speaker who is connecting with them, and is looking at them, not at a script.

ANTIDOTE:
If you have practiced diligently, even a temporary “power outage” of your brain can be handled.

The solution I have always used is what I call the two-card tango. Place a startling statistic or interesting fact that you have had to delete for reasons of time on a 3×5 card.

On the second card, place a bullet outline of the main points of your presentation. If convenient, place these cards in your pocket or on the lectern.

When the “My mind has gone blank” syndrome sets in, merely take both cards and say to the audience “Let me digress for a moment and share with you….” then relate the information on the first card. If you have prepared well, your mind will kick back in, and you can continue where you left off.

If it does not, slide the second card to the front, and look at the bullet points. Select one point and continue the presentation. Your audience will be none the wiser.

Although I always advocate honesty with your audience, I do not recommend that you say “I forgot what I was going to say.” You may get temporary sympathy, but audience members will wonder why they are sitting there if the issue is not important enough for the speaker to remember what he or she was saying.

3. FEAR OF UNANTICIPATED QUESTIONS.
Many people are not worried about making a presentation, because they are “on their turf.” These same people, however, are terrified at the prospect of answering questions, believing they will be embarrassed by not being able to answer questions.

ANTIDOTE:
Seek to anticipate the questions. If you have acquired accurate “intelligence” on the audience’s needs, concerns and problems, then you should be able to preempt certain questions in your presentation, anticipate others, and develop succinct answers to others.

No one expects you to be able to answer every question, but they do expect you to be honest. Don’t give a false answer to avoid the embarrassment of saying: “I don’t know.” That honest phrase, followed by the words “but I’ll get that information for you,” must be in every presenter’s vocabulary.

When you make the commitment to get the information, remember that you have a moral obligation to do just that for the questioner and perhaps the entire audience.

Apply these antidotes, and you’ll find that the “fear of speaking” will be the catalyst to make you a better speaker.

Overcome the Fear of Public Speaking

Hear you are, perfectly relaxed as you attend the farewell party of Joe.

Your boss comes up and asks,” Would you give the farewell speech to Joe in 10 minutes time?”

“I can’t'” you splutter, “my vocal chords are paralyzed.”

And the fear kicks in.

“I can’t do this!”

I must be crazy!”

That doesn’t work so now you wait for the floor to open up and swallow you.

That doesn’t happen either.

Public Speaking creates a great deal of anxiety in most people and arises when they face the prospect of giving a speech, particularly for the first time.

The truth is that public speaking is always a mixture of terror and exhilaration.

For everyone.

It’s just like snow skiing.

When you start, all you can think about is how awkward you are, how dangerous it is and how you’ll never be able to do this.

You get one turn right, get up a little bit of speed, the snow starts to fly in the sunshine and a tiny bit of excitement pops up.

Later, as you become a more accomplished skier, the balance between terror and exhilaration changes.

Now you are zipping down the slopes, carving those turns and feeling like an Olympic Champion!

But there is always that little bit of anxiety lurking, as you speed across the snow.

Typically for beginners in public speaking, all we experience is the terror.

Waiting for our turn to come, starting our speech, the terror remains.

This seems to consume us, makes us irrational and we often feel paralysed.

Then somehow we get through the presentation, come from the stage and as the numbness wears off, the next feeling we have is relief that the ordeal is over.

However, we still retain a sneaking regard for our courage in making that speech and a small glow of exhilaration starts to burn within.

Particularly if we can stop saying to ourselves, “how bad we were.”

In fact, as you walk from the spotlight, say, “Well done indeed,” to yourself.

Why?

Because it’s true.

With more practice, the amount of terror reduces and the amount of excitement increases.

Now you do another speech, another presentation and pretty soon you actually realise that you are enjoying this and you become amazed.

And slowly you become hooked on the excitement of giving a speech.

So much so that when you go to fridge in the night for a drink, the fridge light comes on, and you give a 5-minute presentation!

And then the fun starts to creep in.

And by the way.

If you do not have any nervousness or excitement just before you speak, you will come across to your audience as flat.

Did you know that some of the greatest orators in the world have been known to be physically sick, before giving a stirring speech.

So, always be kind to yourself.

You will get better, with every presentation that you make.

But you have to make the presentations.

So learn the information and then simply “do it!”

Click here for lots more information.

Tips and Tricks to score good in IELTS Speaking Exam – IELTS Oracle

The IELTS Speaking Exam is a one to one interview by a qualified examiner. It very much resembles a real-life situation that a person faces in their day to day life.
The interviewer will question you about common subjects such as the house, job or education in part 1 of your speaking test. It helps you feel relaxed while giving a speaking test. Be relaxed so that you appear confident and your speaking seems natural.

IELTS Speaking Exam is the face to face interaction between the student and the examiner. IELTS speaking test is consists of three sections. The first section is the introduction section. In the second section, a cue card is given to the student and he/she has to speak on the topic given in it. In the third section, there is a discussion on the topic of the cue card.

Here are some tips to score good band in IELTS Speaking Exam:

Look great, smell lovely and feel better. Be certain. Significantly, a solid initial introduction will go far. Do keep in touch without a doubt to capture the consideration of the inspector.

Focus is the principle key to speak well. There ought to be three things in your psyche while taking a test of IELTS Speaking.

What are you Speaking at present?

What you spoke?

What are you going to speak further?

Do deal with tense too in which you should offer a response. Try not to blend your tenses. Do have the most extreme focus on the strained of the inquiry.

Listen inspector cautiously .before offering a response. Continuously tune in to comprehend not to answer. Toward the beginning of the test, simply give the data that is required as opposed to growing a lot on your answers. Hold up until you hear inquiries concerning your home, work, school life, etc before furnishing increasingly expanded responses. And, after its all said and done, give appropriate answers and abstain from wandering on about all that you can consider.

Be genuine while you speak, as you shouldn’t imagine about anything. Nothing isolates the accomplished speaker from fledglings as the tone of the discourse. Get your sentiments like you would do utilizing your homegrown language. Have genuine discussions with the suitable utilization of your feelings.

You ought to speak smoothly and precipitously. You will acquire focuses. Try not to trouble a lot about utilizing shrewd jargon, it’s increasingly imperative to be familiar. Yet also, don’t talk excessively expedient and mind your language.

Speak in any event more than the analyst. On the off chance that the inquiry is of one line than attempt to offer your response in two-three lines. Also, never give short and uncommunicative answers. Try not to offer responses in just YES or NO. Do give appropriate clarifications to fulfill the analyst with your answer.

On the off chance that you committed an error – don’t freeze! Attempt to address yourself as easily as conceivable because while doing that, the analyst will become acquainted with that you are aware of your errors. Regardless, on the off chance that you can’t – simply keep talking, you won’t lose numerous focuses for a couple of errors. Try not to be anxious by any stretch of the imagination. To dispose of this anxiety, enlist yourself in the Best IELTS Institute in Mohali.

Inspectors can check whether you talk uninhibitedly or you remembered the appropriate response before your meeting. Adapting full content is constantly a poorly conceived notion. Rather, it is greatly improved to learn and adjust your very own summarized answers in your discourse. Try not to be dull in your talking test. You ought to consistently stand up of the crate to dazzle the analyst. Never rehash from the inquiry, consistently rethink it. Some portion of talking smoothly is talking unexpectedly, and the inspector will promptly know whether you are spewing reactions.

Understand that the analyst peruses from a content, and heshe can say almost no past what’s written in her test booklet. This can prompt some unbalanced minutes if you attempt to ask the inspector an inquiry. Competitors frequently don’t realize whether they should discuss their nation of origin or where they’re inhabiting the hour of the test, the same number of IELTS test-takers are living endlessly from their local nation. On the off chance that you don’t get something, ask the inspector cordially to rehash the inquiry. Try not to pose such a large number of inquiries to inspector – your lone activity is to respond to the inquiries and show the analyst what you can do in English.

If you are dubious how to react to the request, you can give yourself more opportunity to think by using this tip. To the exclusion of everything else, you can say: “That is a questionable question…”, “I’ve never thought about that before…” or “That is a charming question…”. Thusly, you will have some extra chances to structure your answer.

You can likewise reformulate the inquiry:

Inspector: What was your preferred book in youth?

You: What book did I like as a child?

Use connecting words and structures. Words and expressions like be that as it may, all things considered, in general, also, aside from this, expanding further, besides will unquestionably improve your discourse.

If you know about the organization of the IELTS Speaking test and the kinds of inquiries posed, at that point you can begin arranging. Think about what you can say in various conditions that may arise during the test. For example, the underlying portion of the substance will get some data about things like your home, family, work or your life as an understudy. This is an incredible time to flaunt your capacity to utilize the present immaculate which is adequately educated in Top IELTS Institute in Mohali

Public Speaking: Getting Passed the Fear Factor

Mark Twain said it best: “There are two types of public speakers: those who are afraid and those who are liars.”

Even for those of us who enjoy it, public speaking can be intimidating. It is after all, a moment alone in the spotlight; a moment when for some brief time, all eyes are on you, listening to what you have to say.  Even the most confident of public speakers will sometimes wonder, “Will I meet their expectations this time?”

Why then, do we do it? Why do we subject ourselves to the work, the practice, and the (dare I say it), the need to summon up our courage enough to speak in public?  Why do we need to meet the fear head on and achieve mastery at this particularly intimidating form of communication?

The answer is that without a level of proficiency in speaking publicly, we have no real hope of informing, let alone persuading others beyond our immediate colleagues, about the strength of our ideas. Public speaking is the best way we have for letting those we don’t work with closely every day, hear our ideas and by extension, witness our competence and our skill. For anyone in a leadership position, or aspiring to hold one, communicating only in writing or through individual meetings attended by a few colleagues, isn’t an option. Choosing to leave the communicating to others isn’t an option either, not if you want to establish yourself as a leader.

How is anyone to know these ideas or statements really are yours? How are they to judge the strength to which you hold those ideas or the passion you have for them if you won’t show them? How is our audience to be persuaded about the soundness of a position we hold, the knowledge behind that position, or rightness or the truth of it, if we can’t communicate our ideas ourselves? Email, printed reports, and third parties just can’t substitute for “being there”.   

Leaving the communication to others means leaving the leadership to others.

If you want to lead in any capacity, public speaking is one of the necessary tools you’ll need; as necessary a tool in your leadership toolbox as a command of language itself.

But what if you already know how powerful public speaking skills can vault careers and help sustain existing ones. What if you’re convinced but have allowed fear to hold you back?

Again, we can turn to the words of Mark Twain who defined courage not as the absence of fear, but as the mastery of it.

For anyone who fears public speaking, (and that would be just about anyone who has considered it), how do we master our communication power and become powerful public speakers? You CAN learn to communicate, share, inform, entertain and persuade others, and get past the fear factor.

Begin with 5 basic steps that all successful public speakers have mastered:

1.) Preparation is Key

The single most important thing you can do to boost your confidence as a public speaker is to be prepared. That means not only knowing your subject, but knowing your audience and what they need to hear from you on a given subject, on a given day. Preparation means always respecting your audience enough to do your homework, no matter how well you may know your data. A case in point: Researchers and entrepreneurs often seek our help before addressing target audiences such as investors. Communication coaches like me don’t get paid to tell such clients what they already know about their own work. Instead, we coach them toward powerful communication of what they know, for a specific purpose. In this case, we work toward understanding what their targeted audience of investors needs and wants to know about their idea or product, to allow for buy in and a motivation to act. Similarly, learn to think of your audience as investors in your ideas. What is it you need to say to them and that they need to hear from you?

2.) Assume Good Intentions

your audience didn’t want to hear what you had to say, they wouldn’t be there. If you’re unsure of why your audience came, you’re both in for a rough time. Even those you’ve never met have expectations about what you’ll say and what they’ll learn from you. Make sure you understand those expectations of your audience so you can better meet them. Arrive early so you can speak one on one to some in your audience ahead of time and discover those expectations for yourself. Greeting members of your audience this way will also humanize them for you, and help take away some of the fear of the unknown that is the “audience”.  

3.) Channel those nerves

Don’t seek to get rid of those fears (especially not by camouflaging them with artificial means like alcohol.)  Understand instead that your fear is really energy you’ll need to channel into your speech for a good performance. Blow a bit of the ‘froth’ off that energy by expending some physical exercise—a brisk walk, or deep-knee bends if you can—like an athlete might do before a race. Several deep breaths with slow exhalation really will help you slow a racing heart and help you focus. Continued deep breathing from the diaphragm as you speak will also help you control your voice and the level of your projection. Remember, your audience likely has no idea of your fear, unless you tell them (and you don’t want to tell them). Doing so will only lower their expectations. If you need extra help in those first moments—consider opening with a question to the audience, asking for a show of hands or displaying a prop. Getting the focus off of yourself even momentarily, may give you the boost you need.    

4.) Take a risk 

Many who fear speaking in public retreat behind their materials. This is why audiences have come to dislike powerpoint and podiums. We in the audience want to see the presenter present. It’s in fact, why we’ve come. Disappearing behind the podium or literally turning your back to the audience at best is disappointing and boring and at worse, annoying. Being read a script comes a close second for techniques that try an audience’s patience. They’d much rather catch a glimpse into the real person behind the data show or the printed speech. Think of public speaking as an opportunity to engage your audience with a story, your story. Try speaking to the audience in a way they can actually relate to and retain. Don’t tell them everything you know about a given subject. Try setting aside your materials, from time to time, to really communicate a bigger picture than data or facts can provide. If you are to gain confidence while you’re up there, it’s essential to take in feedback from your audience—and that takes eye contact. They have to see you are engaged and interested to catch engagement and interest. The energy coming back to you will help fuel a better performance.

5.) Visualize success

Don’t allow yourself to focus on the worst of what could happen and indulge your fears—Replace that image by concentrating on how successful you’ll be at delivering your speech or presentation. Think ahead about how you’d handle any mishaps. Powerpoint meltdown? No problem, you know how to begin your talk without it, while the problem is being worked on. Notice some in the audience losing interest? No problem—you’ve already considered how you’d shake things up with some interaction with the audience and a change of pace. Tough questions after your presentation? You’re ready, having already prepared for the toughest anyone might throw at you. Visualize a successful outcome for every negative you throw at yourself. And remember its not the mishap, or the mistake we in the audience will remember, but the way you handled it.

6.) Engage

The single most important factor to success as a public speaker is to show up. That’s right. You can’t win if you don’t play. Confidence isn’t something others can give you and it’s more than just a state of mind. It comes from real experience. Allow yourself to engage so you can have those real experiences that success in public speaking will provide you. All of it: preparation, assuming your audience wants to hear you, harnessing positive energy, taking risks, and allowing yourself to visualize success are basic to communication success. But you can’t tap any of those ingredients and put them to work for you and your good ideas, if you won’t allow yourself to get out in front of others. Don’t allow others to speak for you, whatever your job.  Seize the initiative and begin accumulating the successes that will allow you to take on new public speaking challenges. You’ll be amazed at the reaction of others to your ideas, your authority and your leadership, when you finally begin speaking in public.

Art of Public Speaking

In this advance era, the tactics to know the pulse of people depends upon the skills to speak confidently in public. It is a focused effort by an individual to his audience in a structured and deliberate manner to inform or to influence them. There are few common things that most of the speakers have inculcated in them. If a person wants to master this art of public speaking, he has to adopt certain traits.

In this advance era, the tactics to know the pulse of people depends upon the skills to speak confidently in public. It is a focused effort by an individual to his audience in a structured and deliberate manner to inform or to influence them. There are few common things that most of the speakers have inculcated in them. If a person wants to master this art of public speaking, he has to adopt certain traits.

Magnetic Personality: It is a hard fact that the public judge a speaker not by the content but by the personality. Your way to dress and how you carry yourself on stage have a huge impact on the quality of your presentation so gear up and groom your personality.

 

Knowledge and Contents: A person cannot speak without having the knowledge of what he is speaking. There are many people who have the habit to speak more than they know in actual sense. If you are a good reader then you can have enough knowledge about your topic and you can be able to satisfy your audience. Reading helps to widen your perspective and in taking an intelligent stand.

 

Knowledge about Audience: To be a good public speaker you should know your audience means their background, their profession and their expectations too. This will provide you with the valuable insight to structure your presentation.

 

 Zeal and Passion: Remember one thing that people may forget your speech, but they rarely forget your emotions expressed about the topic. As a professional public speaker you have to increase or decrease the intensity of your emotions about any topic. Your level of believing or not believing the topic can be sensed easily by the audience that is why you have to be passionate to win the hearts of your audience.

 

Non-verbal communication: as it is widely accepted that about 60% of your communication is done non-verbally. So the best public speakers pay a lot of attention to their non-verbal communication- they try to have the grip on their intonation and body language. Even a simple message can be amplified by using variation in tone and appropriate gestures.

 

Importance to add Fun: It has been proven that the audience will remember any message only if it has an element called humor or it is presented with an interesting story related to that topic as it adds extra charm to your speaking. You must always speak in such a manner that people love to listen to you.

How to Find Paid Public Speaking Jobs

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I want to help you start your motivational speaking business and train
you to make more and more money in your motivational speaking career. 
One question I get all the time is, “James, how do I get paid public
speaking jobs?”  These jobs are out there but you need to know where to
look in order to find them.  Here are just a few ideas.1)
Look for organizations that serve the niche you’re in.  For example in
the niche I’m in, I’d take a look at DECA marketing organizations,
FCCLA.  If you’re in the real estate industry, take a look at investor
associations, the national board of realtors or even local community
associations.2) Research public speaking
jobs in related associations within your niche.  Don’t be afraid to
network yourself and get the contact information of the conference
coordinator even if you weren’t hired as their keynote speaker.3)
Increase your professional speaking success by creating a database of
potential clients who may be hiring conference speakers in the future. 
Contact universities, colleges and professors.  You can also try
contacting your local speaker bureaus, non-profit organizations,
corporations and even libraries.4) When
starting a motivational speaking business, you may want to check the
speaker forums for jobs.  You’ll find that many jobs aren’t paid ones,
but they may help you build your credibility in your niche.  The key
thing to remember is to eventually go after higher and higher paying
jobs instead of working for free.5) As
you figure out how to get bookings for motivational speaking, you’ll
develop a system to keep track of all the places you’ll market yourself
to.  The internet is also going to be very helpful in providing contact
information for organizations and conferences that are hiring
motivational speakers.  Just do a search for “calls for speakers” or
“speakers wanted” and you’ll have a hefty listing to work through.6)
There are directories that are published that list all the paying
markets within a niche.  No directory is ever complete, but it will
provide you enough contact to keep your business going.  There are
three main directories that can be helpful with research:  The National
Trade and Professional Associations Directory, The Directory of
Association Meeting Planners and the Directory of Corporate Meeting
Planners.  These directories do cost a bit to acquire, but they’ll make
researching your niche easier than ever!7)
The last source of potential paid public speaking jobs are referrals. 
As you build up a network of peers and clients in your niche market,
referrals will help bring your name to the forefront when conference
planners are looking to hire.  One thing I know is that the person who
markets first to the conference planner when they are ready to hire
will get the job.  Your job is to be there first!I’ve
got one last thing to share with you.  Remember that you can find the
people who have the money to pay you to speak.  You’ve got a number of
resources to help you with researching your niche market.  Once you get
started working a few gigs, don’t be afraid to go after the big money!

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

James Malinchak of www.GetPublicSpeakingJobs.com has delivered over 2,200 motivational presentations at conferences and meetings worldwide. Currently, James owns three business, has authored eight books, and has read and researched over 1,500 books on personal and professional development, making him the top public speaking business coach in the world.