One famous poll revealed that most people’s No. 1 fear is public speaking – higher than death itself, which came in at No. 2!
Whether you’re presenting to board members, speaking at a seminar or conference, etc. keep these communication tactics from speaker Stacey Hanke in mind:
Pause more often
Many speakers fill in pauses during speeches with “umms” or “OK.” Or they rush into the next point instead of letting what they just said sink in with the audience.
Pausing after making your points gives the audience time to digest the info and makes them pay greater attention.
Make eye contact
Keep your focus on the audience.
Looking down at your notes occasionally or pointing to your screen periodically is OK. But “reading” straight from them will lose your audience.
Make it personal
You may ask, How do you make a discussion on nitty-gritty Finance topics exciting?
Easy. Inject some personal observation or, if you have one, personal experience about the topic into your speech.
Spend five minutes thinking about why the topic matters to you and you’ll come up with something.
Personal observations help you connect with the audience and get them thinking about their own experiences and opinions too.
The best speakers vary their volume. They deliberately get loud when they’re making their key points and want the group’s full attention.
In general, you’re better off amplifying your voice. Louder speakers convey confidence.
Soft speakers are soothing … but they eventually soothe their listeners to sleep!