For a Long time Public Speaking has posed a great problem to most of human beings. Traditionally, public speaking was known as the leader addressing a crowd from the stage. It is not so today. Verbal communications have become extremely important. So even if you are speaking one on one, same articulation and clarity in voice is required as if you are talking to a group. PPT presentations have become very important in day to day functioning of the office. We will therefore deal with the six most critical aspects of Public Speaking, which are:
- Stage Fright:
Stage Fright is the fear of speaking to someone or to a group of people. When you are addressing a group of people the intensity of stage fright may be more. However if an executive is speaking just to one person – his Big Boss, he/she may experience the same fear as if they are speaking to a crowd. The strength of the fear may very from person to person and situation to situation.
You must thoroughly prepare to meet the requirement of any speaking assignment. And how do you do that? First of all, you must know your subject well. Content is the king. You should never pretend and display your ignorance of the subject to a group or even to an individual. If you don’t know, your best option is to say ‘I don’t know about it as of now’. Nobody can be expected to know everything under the Sun. Further, you should know your audience very well and you should speak in their own language.
- Body Language:
This is also very important to convey your massage. If your body language does not contribute to the efficacy of your speech, the audience will not appreciate your message. They will feel that you’re not speaking from your heart. This will go against the basic can tenets of public speaking- Ethos, Pathos and Logos. So far as body language is concerned, everything counts. The way you stand or sit, your facial expressions, the movement of your hands and legs if you’re standing. All are important.
Practice is critical for making a presentation. You must practice by reading your speech many times. You should also practice the way you’re going to deliver your speech. In delivery, it’s important to maintain an eye contact with the audience. And enthusiasm should be maintained throughout the speech. It is possible only if you breathe properly. Deep breathing is recommended. In fact yoga and various yogic practices help you to develop a habit of deep breathing. The importance of practice in public speaking can never be exaggerated.
- Audience connect:
You should connect with the audience. It should appear that you are speaking to them individually. You may roll your eyes in the entire hall. Verisimilitude will take place. The speaker should never look toward the ceiling or any corner or only in one direction. This will disconnect the rest of the people. In turn, they will become disinterested.
- Inject humor:
Any speech devoid of humor becomes very dry and uninteresting. Humor can be created in many ways. Experienced speakers ask the audience simple questions a in such a way that they burst into laughter. A new speaker has to be more careful. He should practice interesting anecdotes, or humorous stories. We must remember that the relevance of the story with the subject or the situation we face should be unquestionable. Story telling is also an art which must be practiced extensively.
Public speaking is no doubt difficult. But its advantages are immense. Today, when lots of presentations have to be made by executives, any kind of stage fright or hesitation is a serious handicap. Likewise, clarity in speech in order to articulate your ideas is important to make an impact. Practicing by finding opportunities to speak in public will go a long way to making you good public speaker.
Thanks for reading.