Public speaking is a crucial exercise in a professional life. It can be experienced as a dreaded challenge or a pleasant journey. Absolutely not innate, training support you to chase away this stage fright and make you rock the stage.
This exercise is for you whether you need to speak in meetings, assemblies or in front of journalists.
From your demanding daily life or a planned event, public speaking is an appointment to:
- get your ideas across
- fight for your subjects
- convince your audience.
Discover tips and good practices through my 10 points of attention.
1. Avoid the walk of death
The first seconds of your show are decisive. Imagine a camera above your head. You are under observation. Get engaged straight away. If not? Your audience will dread you, feeling sorry before you even had the time to start. Let’s go, open your chest, stick your shoulders out and smile – to yourself, at least.
You have few milliseconds to make the first impression right.
2. Find your voice
The tone, timbre and fluctuation of your voice will lead your audience. Try out your voice.
- The first is the one you address to yourself: “Where is my phone? “.
- Your second voice is for the camera, your interlocutor, a journalist.
- Your third voice requires you to include your entire audience in this open discussion.
In presentation, you speak faster than in life.
To find your tempo: count the seconds while drawing the numbers with your fingers.
3. Be yourself
Embody who you are, without pretension, no more, no less. You are not that bullied child, nor that arrogant, dismissive character. Do not hide yourself by making yourself smaller than you really are. Embody who you are.
Rationalize your fears. You are your worst judge. It is your choice. Are you going to listen to your irrational brain or to your intelligence?
Don’t fleed away before entering the stage. You are expected to speak. You have all the legitimacy you need, it’s your turn so get started.
Use adrenaline, that legal drug, to give the best of yourself.
4. Check out the place
Find out about the number of people, the place, the technical features available, the setting and therefore the tone to be used. Never presume anything until you are assured. Check even for yourself.
Depending on the chosen subject, use humor… or not (too much). To start, break the ice with an anecdote, a joke or a smile. You will connect with your audience.
Know about the place you will perform in.
5. Let your face speak
Your face is expressive. Use these combinations as possibilities to say a lot with a glance, a smile or a gesture. To connect with your audience in a small committee, look at each of your guests. For a larger audience, look at areas. Are you chainging from one idea to the other? It is the time to change the direction of your face.
Did you know that scientists have counted about 250,000 different facial expressions?
6. Speak with the full potential of your body
Your body is telling the truth. Before you could even think about it, it transmitted the message lodged in your subconscious.
Be congruent. Say what you mean, mean what you say. This coherence between your mind and your body is essential for your audience to follow you.
Are you passionated about your topic? No need to say it. Show it!
Did you know that your body can emit up to 700,000 different signals?
7. Hear about the silences
Plan break in your speech. Observe. Question. Ask for answers and feedback. Is your audience tired and are you losing their attention? Grant a moment of silence. The mind wonders, did your audience miss something? You will boost the attention.
Silence attracts attention.
8. Master your topic
This is your cheerished theme. You know it by heart. If your notes can be welcome to quote someone or specify figure or statistics, instead of reading them, tell, demonstrate and perform with all your energy.
Is your speech written by someone? Annotate, reformulate, add your own pace and style. You deliver the message. Stay in control.
Start and end with sentences you are familiar with.
9. Use your breathing tempo
Breath. Before going on stage, take the time to breath with your full body, your ribs rise, your shoulders open. Feel this release. Remember a happy time. If the stress invades you on stage, come back to this reassuring moment.
Once on stage, don’t forget to breath. Your breath will give your audience information about the right time to ask questions or to applaud.
Breathing allows you to oxygenate your brain and your body while giving rhythm to your speech.
10. Portez votre tenue de super:wo:man
Find the outfit that will make you invincible. No need to think about it. It is there, comfortable, staying in place.
Your look is your armour to face this challenge. Choose it to convey your message, to say who you really are.
Your outfit is an expression of your personality.
You are a woman or a man of conviction. You have ideas to struggle for, you lead a team or develop a business.
Speaking in public with comfort is mandatory. It certainly takes you out of your comfort zone.
I support you to gain self-confidence and dare to take position while revealing your assets, showing your personality and eventually doubts.
Demonstrate what matters to you, make people listen and remember about you & your ideas.