You’ve been asked to present your idea to a room full of people. It’s your chance to shine but you’re more worried about sweating and stammering through your speech!
If the thought of public speaking sends you into a flat panic, you’re not alone. According to studies, 75% of adults suffer from speech anxiety.
But while few people enjoy public speaking or can deliver presentations without feeling nervous, it’s integral to building a successful career. So to help you conquer your fears and deliver better presentations, here are our five top public speaking tips…
1. Keep it simple – When planning your presentation, try to keep it simple. Don’t over complicate your presentation with intelligent sounding words you stammer over or technology you don’t know how to use.
2. Practice makes perfect – Read through your speech and deliver your presentation to family and friends for practice. Ideally you want to know your speech so well that if you lost it on route to the office on the big day, you could stand and deliver it from memory.
3. Keep it on cue – Write out numbered cue cards with keywords or your own shorthand version of your presentation. Use your cue cards to guide you as you speak, it’s far neater than reading from sheets of paper and will help keep you on track.
4. Dress for success – Pick a comfortable and professional outfit to wearing during your presentation and make sure it’s ironed and ready on the day. Clothes can really make or break one’s confidence so make sure you feel good about your outfit.
5. Make friends with the audience – Try to think of the audience as your friends – it will help you smile and make eye contact naturally while you speak. Remember, regardless of titles or designer suits, the audience are made up of people just like you.