Speeches How to Deliver a Speech and How to Begin and End a Speech How to Deliver a Speech Preparation Know your audience! Your audience should determine everything, including topic selection, how you present your ideas, and how you deliver your speech. Practice, practice, practice! Practice will help you by making you more confident with the material and with the presentation of it. Delivery: Voice Your voice must be confident, and loud enough so everyone can hear you. Speak as though you are speaking only to the people at the very back of the room. Tailor your voice to the type of speech you are giving. An instructional lecture should sound different from a humorous one. Vary the pitch and volume of your voice to emphasize points. Speak in complete sentences. Plan any hesitation between words, or don’t hesitate much at all. Delivery: Posture and Body Language Stand tall and straight. Imagine that there is a string attached to the top of your head, holding you up. Avoid extreme mannerisms, such as over- gesturing with your hands, clutching your hands together, keeping your hands in your pockets, or leaning on the podium. Be friendly. Make eye contact with different individuals in your audience. Speak to them, not at them! What if I’m REALLY nervous? There are some “tricks” to presenting a better speech, even if you feel very, very nervous: Place your hands gently on the sides of the podium. Plant your feet shoulder-width apart. Use them to anchor yourself. If you have trouble meeting people’s eyes, spend more time looking at the tops of their heads, or at the back wall. Rehearse, rehearse, rehearse! More rehearsing will make you more confident. Remember that public speaking is hard for everyone! Your audience appreciates that it is hard to do, but they really want to hear the content of what you have to say. How to Begin a Speech Introductions “An introduction to a speech is what a man’s trousers are to full dress when he goes out to dinner. They are a necessity. Without them he is undressed and he shocks many people.” Introductions A speech without an introduction is undressed. It shocks many people. It can be said that with few exceptions every speech demands a pair of trousers, - i.e., an introduction. It also has been said that every speaker has the audience’s attention when he\she rises to speak and that if he\she loses the attention, it is after he\she begins to speak, hence the importance of the introduction becomes apparent. INTRODUCTORY REMARKS HAVE SEVERAL PURPOSES: 1. To gain the attention, arouse the interest and excite the curiosity of the listeners. This may be affected in several ways: a. by telling a story; b. by referring to a recent incident that the audience is familiar with; c. by using a quotation; d. by using a novel idea or striking statement to arouse curiosity; e. by putting pertinent questions to the audience. INTRODUCTORY REMARKS HAVE SEVERAL PURPOSES: 2. To prepare and open the minds of the hearers for the thoughts which are to come. 3. To indicate the direction and purpose of the speech and the end it will reach. Other Notes on Introductions Generally speaking, an introduction is prepared last. When the speaker is introduced, he\she should rise easily without noise or delay and move to the platform. After arriving there, a few seconds should elapse while he\she deliberately surveys the scenes before him\her. It is a good idea to address your audience directly – to let them know you are speaking to each of them (i.e. they are not simply overhearing your speech). Traditional ways of doing this are statements like “Ladies and gentlemen…” or “Classmates, judges, guests…”, but do not feel limited to these. Examples a)“Three persons were burned to death a week ago because of a school house which has improper fire escape exits.” b)“It is hard to imagine fifty thousand persons destroyed in a few seconds…” c) “I would like to tell you how atomic power may be harnessed so that it will wash your dishes and heat your house.” d)“I have chosen to speak to you today on the subject of crime, which is costing our nation untold billions of dollars. It is my desire to explain to you the causes of crime as well as the prevention.” How to End a Speech Conclusions A day is never ended without a sunset of some kind. If the sunset is captivating, the entire day is often long remembered because of its impressive ending. A speech is much the same. It must have an ending and to be most successful, the ending should be impressive. Conclusions The conclusion brings together all the thoughts, emotions, discussions, arguments and feelings which the speaker has tried to communicate to his\her audience. Keep in mind: The conclusion should make a powerful impression on the listeners. It is the last opportunity to emphasize the point of the speech. When a speaker moves into his\her conclusion, it should be obvious that he/she is closing his/her remarks. His/her intentions should be clear. The importance of the delivery of a conclusion cannot be over-emphasized. The eye contact should be direct, the posture alert and the voice sincere and distinct. WAYS TO DEVELOP A CONCLUSION: a) Summary….“Czechoslovakia will live again! The hordes of Hitler the Huns of Europe, the intrigue of Berlin shall not swallow up this mighty and prideful people. They shall rise up and fight their horrible aggressor. Yes, Czechoslovakia will live again!” b) A striking anecdote or story…“These old cars of ours are like the wonderful one horse shay. Let us hope that they, too, do not suddenly fall apart, scattering nuts and bolts across our neighbor’s lawn.” c) An emotionalized statement of the main idea…“Honesty is and always will be the moral fiber of our country. Let us continue to be known as the world’s most honest nation.” d) A vivid illustration of the central idea…“The famous words of John Paul Jones, who said he had not begun to fight, are emblazoned across the world’s horizon, for tonight the American Navy launched ten new battle ships.” e) A call for action…“Let’s go out one by one, by two’s and three’s or by the hundreds and vote for clean government and honest officials. Let’s do it tomorrow – it’s election day and our only hope!” Final Speech Advice When the speech is done the speaker should hold the floor for a second or two. A person should not let his/her actions portray how well or how poorly he\she thinks he\she has done on his\her speech.