Don’t be fooled—it is a very rare person who isn’t daunted by the idea of giving a speech in front of a room full of people. Even the most talented actors often suffer from stage fright. The following are some tips designed to help diminish your fear and possibly even increase your enjoyment of a speech well given!
- One: Who is your audience? Who will be hearing your presentation—co-workers, representatives from other companies, clients, potential clients, or even mass media? Your audience will determine the type of presentation you will need to make.
- Two: What do you want to say? Write a draft of your speech in advance. Edit it. Practice it. Rewrite it, if necessary. And practice it again, as many times as you need, until you have it down pat.
- Three: Which outfit in your closet will make you feel the most secure? Pick an outfit that is appropriate for the situation and in which you feel attractive, yet comfortable. The last thing you want to be worrying about in front of a room full of people is whether your outfit looks good!
- Four: Breathe. Before you walk through the door to your presentation, take three or four deep, calming breathes. Stand up straight. Pull your shoulders back. Acknowledge to yourself you are completely prepared. Then walk through the door to your presentation with a smile on your face.
- Five: Make eye contact with your audience. Whether your audience is large or small, make eye contact with at least some of the people in the room. If your audience is large, pick a couple of people to whom you will be directing your remarks. This will create a sense of intimacy between you and your audience.
- Six: Relax, speak slowly, and enjoy yourself. The more relaxed you appear to be, the more your audience will appreciate your presentation!