I'm looking for tips for giving a speech in front of a large adult crowd. I've always had anxiety with speaking in front of multiple people and try to avoid it at all costs, but this time it's unavoidable. Thanks in advance?

2 Answers

Yo Kass Profile
Yo Kass answered

I've had to give a few public talks for work recently, and here are some tips I've picked up:

  1. Practice. A lot. The better you know what you're going to say, the easier it is to fall back on "auto-pilot" if you start getting nervous. This is especially important for the beginning of your talk. If you memorize what to say to kick things off, then you'll find it easier to improvise once you're in the flow of the speech.
  2. Body language is super important. Practice how you're going to stand, and what hand gestures you're going to make. Even if you're feeling nervous inside, being mindful of your body language means you can appear calm and collected even if you don't initially feel that way.
  3. Pause with purpose. If you look at how seasoned public speakers like Presidents talk when they're giving a speech, you'll notice they pause for longer and more often than they would in normal conversation. Regulating the speed of your speech is another way to take control of the moment. You'll appear confident, and your audience will listen to you more intently for it.


Ray Dart Profile
Ray Dart answered

My advice would be to enjoy it.

I was once called to Birmingham for a "meeting" about something my company sold.

When I arrived I found that so many people wanted to listen to what I had to say that they had booked the lecture theatre! I suddenly had an audience of about 250 people hanging on my every word, and of course, I hadn't prepared anything for a formal "talk".

At the end of what could have been a horrid 45 minutes I had an audience almost crying with laughter at my very "in" and "tech-friendly" jokes. I'd even managed to explain how my product worked along the way.

We got an order for 2 million dollars worth of kit about 10 days later.

The salesman got the commission, I got the kudos.

Ever since then, I have taken every opportunity to speak in public when asked to. It's such a buzz!

Really though, better preparation than I had is a good thing.

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