Public Speaking Guide

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Please arrive about 5 mins before to ensure that everything is set up according to your requirements. One of the organisers will be on hand to organise seating etc.

Finish

Each speaker is allotted 25 mins.
Out of courtesy and respect for the following speaker it is important to finish on time.
Experience has shown that when speakers go beyond the allocated time the audience becomes restless, and begins to ‘tune out’. People’s attention spans are generally limited.

One of the most common mistakes made by those new to public speaking is trying to cover too much information.
New speakers often worry that they have to cover every angle of their topic.
This is generally unnecessary, and is not always appreciated by the audience.
If people have more questions or there is more material you would like to cover use this as an opportunity to direct people back to your table.

Some tips for those new to public speaking

  • Do not read from a script word-for-word.
    The audience usually finds this find this style very boring.
    Instead bring an organised short list in point form of material to be covered.
  • Avoid saying ‘um’ or ‘ah’.
    Listen to any tapes you have from your previous lectures and check usage of these words.
  • Never apologise for any aspect of your presentation, it really does not look good.
  • Show enthusiasm and display some animation.
  • Dress professionally.
    If you want to be taken seriously dress a little ‘up-market’, or at least good casual.
  • Interact with the audience. Be sensitive to how they are receiving your message.
  • Do not feel that you have to cover every aspect of your subject – audiences only have a limited attention span.
  • Stick to the time allotted for your talk, otherwise people can get restless and annoyed.
  • Talk as if you are having a conversation with someone, relax, show a little humour.
  • Remember to smile.
  • Improve your presenting skills by joining organisations such as Toastmasters.

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