5 Ways to Give a Great Speech

great speeches

A great speech requires connection and a takeaway to be remembered.

 

Let’s face it. For some, public speaking comes natural and for others it is their Achilles Heel.

I’m probably somewhere in the middle, which is why I am always looking to learn from the best and pick up a tip or two to get better. This is far from an exhaustive list of course, but it’s a start when it comes to thinking about how to deliver a speech that will be remembered… for good reasons!

1.   Tell Stories

Telling stories when giving a speech is probably the most common advice on the subject, but that’s because it’s so effective.

Think about some of the best public speakers that you’ve ever heard and chances are that he/she was likely a good storyteller. Good public speakers connect with the audience because they tell stories well.

They build up the story and then deliver that line(s) that you will remember long after they have left the stage.

Even the driest subjects can come to life when delivered by a good public speaker.

2.   Opening is Key

There are scores of studies out there that say that the first few minutes are key for any public speaker.

If your opening is weak, the chances you’ll lose the crowd increase exponentially. This has happened to me before which is why I always rehearse my opening over and over. I’m not very funny, but if you are, employ that skill when speaking in public.

There’s hardly a better time to use humor when giving the speech then right off the gate.

You will immediately put your crowd at ease and increase the chances that they will listen all the way through.

3.   Everyone is Entitled to an Opinion, but Not Their Facts

Make sure you do your homework and come prepared with facts.

Opinions are fine, but if you are prepared to make a case to the audience, it’s absolutely critical that you back up your claims with reliable sources. Failing to do this runs the risk of undermining your credibility, which is something you never want to do when giving a speech.

If it helps, write down your sources on a piece of paper, or better yet have it memorized so that you can communicate this to your audience quickly so that you can go back to giving your speech.

Next- Watch the Clock and Strong Closing

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About the author

Israel Ortega

Israel is a Senior Writer for Opportunity Lives. Most recently he was Vice President for Media Relations and Multicultural Affairs at Crisp Communications, LLC - a full service advocacy, communications and events services firm. Prior to Crisp Communications, Israel worked for The Heritage Foundation - a public policy think tank in Washington, D.C. Israel has appeared on Univision, FOX News and NBC’s Meet the Press. Israel lives in Washngton, DC with his wife, Josie, and two daughters, Mary Tobin (3) and Inez (1). You can follow him on Twitter: @IzzyOrtega

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