SOMERVILLE, NJ - Did you know the greatest fear for most people is public speaking? People fear the insecurity, judgment, and attention that comes with public speaking more than sharks! However, the truth is, many professions require the use of speaking in front of an audience. You’ll probably need to speak in front of an audience at least once in your lifetime, whether it be presenting in class or in the workplace to giving a speech at a wedding.
Communicating effectively is an important skill to have and the sooner you learn to develop it, the better you will be. Below are some tips on how to best prepare for a speech or presentation you need to give:
Prepare – Preparation is the key to a flawless execution. Try writing out your speech beforehand. Once you have it written, get comfortable with it. Then try writing important points on note cards. Your points should trigger what you want to say about the topic at hand. No one likes it when someone just reads off their cards or presentation deck. However, if you have prepared and know what you’re speaking about inside and out, you won’t need to read off of anything. Instead, you only need to be prompted by the bullet points on your cards or in your presentation to simply share what you know.
Be Confident – If you have studied your materials beforehand, you will become an expert at what you are presenting on. As an expert, there is no reason to doubt what you are saying. Body language is key here. You want to exude self-confidence from your posture, voice volume, gestures, and eye contact. If you feel it is hard for you to look into people’s eyes, then you can simply pick a point in the back of the room that is above people’s heads. Stand up straight and project your voice. This is especially important if you don’t have a microphone. Think of projecting like the vendors that would shout out what they were selling from the street up to people in their homes above. Also remember that you should speak slowly. When people are nervous, they tend to naturally talk fast, but since you need your audience to understand you clearly, slow down.
Engage – You are sharing something interesting or potentially important with your audience. Think about your goal beforehand. Start your speech off with a smile and remember that you need to engage your audience. That has to do with the inflections of your voice as well as your gestures and movements. If you have the freedom to move around, do so! Think about moving to different areas as you change to a different point in your speech. Feel free to make larger gestures occasionally. You don’t want to move or gesture so much that you become a cartoon character or make people motion sick, but pick a few key points in which you will want to enhance your speech with a gesture or movement.
Lastly, remember to have fun! Enjoy yourself! The time will fly by before you know it.
If you have a student in high school who could use some help with their communication and/or presentation skills. Check out the public speaking classes that Elite Advantage Prep Educational Consultants have to offer this summer.
Elite Advantage Prep, LLC assists its students and their families navigate the college admissions process through personalized consulting. Elite Advantage Prep, LLC assists students with everything from creating a list of "good match" schools based on their unique interests and needs to help them brainstorm admissions essays. Elite Advantage Prep, LLC can also help students create a “four-year plan” to help them achieve the right balance of classes and activities with the goal of helping each student achieve their ultimate potential. Elite Advantage Prep, LLC is deeply dedicated to each of its students and their families – you are not just a number.
In addition to individual consulting services, Elite Advantage Prep, LLC also offers small group classes that focus on teaching students to communicate effectively and confidently, because Elite Advantage Prep, LLC believes in helping its students develop skills that last a lifetime.
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