Some Tips About Speaking in Public

Years ago even the idea of standing up in front of people terrified me. That was before I became PTA President four years in a row. I quaked a bit through my two years of president for our grammar school, but it really seemed scary to have to stand up in front of the much larger crowd of parents for the junior high. The past president gave me some advice which has stayed with me every since. "None of those people out there wants to take your place."

As time passed, I've taught classes to large and small groups, and given many, many talks about writing. It dawned on my awhile back that there are some other tips about speaking in public I should share.

Wear something you like and you're comfortable in.

Stand up. People pay a lot more attention when you stand up to speak. Also, your voice will project.

Put together a handout that you also can work from to make sure you cover all your points, but make sure you know your subject well enough that you don't have to read your talk.

While speaking, look from one person to another, make eye contact with everyone.

Ever once in awhile, smile.

Remember, everyone who is there came to hear what you have to say.

Be sure to leave time for questions. If you don't know the answer, say so.

On your handout have you website address and email address.

Try to stay within you time limits. If people are getting restless, it's time to quit.

Thank everyone, and smile.

P.S. If you give the same talk often, be sure to refresh it. Check facts, see if anything has changed since the last time you gave this particular talk.

The more you speak in public the easier it becomes.

And a confession, while I'm waiting to get up and talk, I do feel nervous. The minute I stand up in front of everyone, the nervousness leaves.

Good luck.



Monti said…
It always helps to have an outline if for no other reason than it makes you feel more confident!

Good tips, Marilyn!

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