“You are a store house of amazing stories, untold speeches and applaud-winning presentations.”-Samuel Agyeman-Prempeh
The above quote is a gentle reminder – and for those who were unaware, it is an announcement. This quote is for those who face challenges when preparing to speak before an audience. It may be difficult settling on one topic, choosing an angle to deliver it and bringing an array of ideas into one discourse. But really, should this be a challenge?
In my earlier write up, “Public Speaking Fundamentals,’ I shared how unique you are and that you carry an amazing story. I want to say this another way. Be you. Do well to not be caught up in trying to speak or act like another who would have probably spent years perfecting his or her craft.
It is a safety precaution to not write out your speeches. One reason is, you may use written language to write the speech instead of spoken language. Unless you are a pretty good writer – in this case, you can write out your speech in spoken language. There is another means by which you can perfectly prepare for a speech: you can make notes on major points you intend to communicate. The idea is to not be trapped in a written speech, such that if you missed a word, you would be lost, and sound confused. Rather, you will take ownership of the message you are conveying and have brief points written down to guide you in conveying the message. The goal is to keep your speech fluent and natural, whether or not it is written.
The power of a great speech is often dependent on a number of things such as: the examples, illustrations, anecdotes and quotes. A well delivered speech, embellished with the appropriate examples, is a good meal. It makes a balanced speech, especially when it respects the law of the “KISS” (Keep It Short and Simple). Find examples or stories that are relevant to the message you want to convey – stories often have lasting impact on listeners. Most good talks or books are either stories being explained or stories explaining a message.
Be intentional. Be deliberate about your presentation and in selecting examples. Be conscious for improvement. Even at intervals, where you want to introduce exciting thoughts, you need to plan for that. You can consider making brief notes to guide you on the interesting points you want to mention.
Preparation is key and fundamental. The amount of time and effort you put into carefully rehearsing your message will be invaluable. Let me remind you, you do not have to rehearse your message to the letter; instead, know the content of your message and understand the subject matter. You most likely have heard the advice that standing in front of your mirror could be very rewarding. It is very rewarding. You may look weird doing that, but would it not be better looking weird in front of your mirror than looking weird in front of an audience?
These are a few pointers you can add to your repertoire in preparing to deliver a speech, lead a discussion or make a presentation. Once taken into consideration, this could change your speech delivery entirely. All the best!
by: Samuel Agyeman-Prempeh