Public speaking, i.e., delivering your thoughts effectively through speech, is a skill. A good public speaker can handle everything, from formal corporate presentations to successfully proving a point at a family gathering. For some people, speaking in front of a crowd can make their palms sweat.
Fortunately, it’s not impossible to develop the skills and expertise necessary to feel at ease while addressing an audience at work or in a public setting.
Apply William Schantz’s tips on public speaking to deliver anything, anywhere you want, confidently.
How to Improve Public Speaking Skills By William Schantz
1. Understand Your Target Audience
When you know who’s your audience, you can determine the relevant information that must be delivered. Everything changes depending on the audience, including vocabulary, statistics, justifications, and references to tone and body language.
Your tone and body language for corporate presentations must be formal, and you must stick to statistical facts and figures to prove your point.
If you are a public speaker at a social event, you’ll have to add character to your tone and give references that amuse the crowd.
According to William Schantz, you naturally feel more confident and comfortable when you know how to adjust your speaking style according to the audience.
2. Keep Practicing
We all know the old saying that practice makes a man perfect. You can only improve your public speaking skills by putting yourself out there over and over. Before the event, practice your speech aloud until you’re comfortable and confident.
To improve your ability to communicate with people, try setting aside a few additional minutes each day to voice concerns in conversations with acquaintances or meetings. As per William Schantz, it will surely reward you on the big day.
3. Avoid Paper Reading or Memorizing
Word-to-word reading creates a monotonous tone when you speak. Instead of peeking at the paper to see what is written next, make cue cards for all the important points.
Also, memorizing your speech or presentation puts you at a greater risk of stuttering and stammering. You lose your audience’s attention when you start recalling what you memorized. It looks unprofessional, and it will be challenging to deliver what you have to say effectively.
They will respond more positively if you speak directly to the audience rather than reading notes. The information sounds more relevant when delivered to the audience with eye contact. On stage, feel free to move about a little and make appropriate hand movements.
4. Always Appreciate Honest Feedback
Take feedback every time you practice or present in front of a group of people. Anyone listening can point out examples of where you need to improve. If you’re very nervous initially, practice in front of someone you can trust. You will be able to take criticism positively and easily during practice.
Accepting criticism may be difficult. Take a moment to grasp someone’s negative feedback before defending yourself. Don’t let the criticism shatter your confidence. Absorb the suggestions so that you may use them to enhance your public speaking skills.
5. Just Be You
Speaking in front of an audience is most enjoyable when you are comfortable being yourself. Capture the audience’s attention by including your uniqueness and flare.
William Schantz warns that dull robotic talks will make audiences lose focus. To make a presentation or speech seem like a great chat between friends, you can add personal anecdotes or speak your usual way.