Thursday, April 17, 2008

Public Speaking in Style

Does the thought of speaking in public make your heart sink into your stomach? If so, you're not alone. Many people are petrified of presenting their ideas in front of an audience, no matter what their learning style.

To discover your learning style, click here.

Fortunately, many public speaking techniques are available for you:
· use props,
· make eye contact with the audience,
· speak slowly,
· articulate well,
· move about with purpose (not nervously),
· use your hands to emphasise your point,
· breathe with the diaphragm,
· focus on someone in the back of the room (the audience won’t know),
· pretend you're a professional on TV to feel extra confident,
· write the way you talk, in other words, write your speech to be heard, not as text to be read with the eyes: use shorter, less formal sentences,
· have a great opening and closing.

However, it also pays to keep your own learning style in mind when making a presentation:
· If you are tactile, include props that you can touch during your speech.
· If you are kinesthetic, act out what you’re saying and gesticulate.
· If you need mobility, walk or move your body without distracting the audience.
· If you need intake, have a glass of water ready and take small sips between the major points of your presentation.
· If you are visual, by all means include lots of visual material to act as a prompt and a confidence booster to you, but bear in mind that not everybody in your audience is visual and therefore may not benefit from your visuals much, so plan the content of your presentation to be as multi-sensory as possible – it will truly reach your audience.
· If you like learning in a group, the local Toastmasters club may be for you.

To discover your learning style, click here.

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