Diana Beyer writes about speaking Online and more specifically about delivering a course Online. Here we have taken some of her content and tailored around what is important for any speech delivered Online.

But firstly, what are the Differences Between Offline And Online Speeches

Differences Between Offline And Online Speeches 

Let’s start making sure that you understand the difference between an online and an offline speech – just bear in mind that we are talking here about courses that don’t involve live video conferences.

First of all, it is an uncontrolled environment. Meaning that you can’t be sure of what your students are doing while you talk. You won’t be able to see their faces, analyse their reactions, so you can make adjustments from there. The feedback you are more likely to get will come only after the end of your course, meaning that it will be very late and expensive to change anything.

Secondly, it might be watched in blocks. As the content is available in a way that a student can use it anytime and for as long as they want it, they might not watch your video in full, but a couple of minutes per time.

Thirdly, interactivity will be established in a very different way. This is most likely to happen through emails or forums, as there is no way to know who will be online when. So strategies that involve asking questions to your audience are completely out of the table here.

Now that you have in mind the challenges you have to face, let’s go to the tips that will help you with them.

  1. Make sure that your equipment is right

 

This is really critical. No matter how brilliant you are as a speaker, your microphone and camera can ruin you from the very start. So take your time to test your equipment, the lightning, your computer, your whiteboard (if you are using one), or any other resources that you will use for it. Get to know what are the best things available when it comes to technologies. Choose your best angle (yes, it does exist!) and listen to your own voice. Record a few tests and see how it went. Ask other people’s opinion too, especially if you know someone with the same description of your target audience (read the next tip). And don’t forget to do it all over again just before you start, as some settings might need to be adjusted again.

  1. Get to know your audience

Who are your audience? How young/old are they? Where are they from? What is their background? What are they looking for? You need to answer these and other questions if you like to get your speech right. Depending on what you find out, you might need to adapt your vocabulary, your tone of voice, and how you organize what you are going to say. If you ignore it, you might sound too academic or just boring. They even might not understand you all together, and your content will get poor reviews for this easy-to-fix reason. So look for them wherever you can, from social media to your nearby coffee shop. But find out what you need to know so you can customize your speech to your target audience.

  1. Get inspired

You should always watch speeches similar to the one you are about to record so that you can get inspired. Of course, pick the instructors with the highest reviews, but make sure that you analyse the comments, so you know you are both dealing with the same audience and level of expertise. Not that you are going to be copying them, as you should learn to develop your own style. But finding out what works, getting everything organized using mobile apps or even your notebooks, and adapting it to your own needs is something that you should consider.

  1. Inspire them

Now that you have inspired yourself, it is your time to inspire them. The biggest challenge is to keep your audience interested, and this is your task as well, something that you will be trying to accomplish by being persuasive. As often as possible, you should challenge and encourage your audience. They need to believe that they are capable of doing something by themselves, so don’t make the process too hard, but also don’t underestimate their abilities. Surprise them and congratulate them during your speech, as if they were there. Use positive words, and let them know what is expected of them and what they should do next.

  1. Watch your body language

Here is where your words become less important, and you start to pay attention to how you say it. At this stage, your body language can be your best friend or your worst enemy as it gives away your intentions, experience and fears. What you should do here is to record yourself delivering the speech and check your body language (not the content). Among others, you should look for the following behaviours:

  • Your hands should be used wisely, to point out things and reinforce what you want to say
  • Your body should be balanced, so keep it feet shoulder apart
  • Pronounce your words clearly and breath calmly, so you will sound confident
  • Remember to include 5-10 seconds pauses, so they can have the time to reflect and take notes
  1. The Takeaway 

If you want to be a successful online instructor and deliver persuasive speeches, you will need to take it seriously and prepare yourself for your audience.

Of course, you need to know the content by heart, but as a speaker, you know that this is only 50% (or less) of the requirements. And that if you don’t manage to engage your audience and keep them interested, all your efforts could go to waste.

So make you sure that you also do your homework and that you know what you audience wants from you. Check your equipment, and test and train your speech before delivery.

Source: www.elearningindustry.com/6-tips-deliver-persuasive-speeches-elearning

Ashley Bowen Cook tells us that most of us will do many more small-group presentations in our life than standing in front of a large crowd. Whether you’re presenting to an internal team or a group of shareholders or at a social occasion, she offers a few suggestions to keep your audience engaged and your points remembered.

Set the scene

Provide an overview of what you’re going to say. Set the scene. You don’t have to have a formal speech written out, in fact, please don’t do that. People will tune out. But you shouldn’t completely wing it. Jot down an outline of key points, even if you don’t refer to them when you’re talking. They will help you make a mental map and ensure you hit the points you want to make. It will also help you make them quicker. You will ramble less.

Establish yourself as an expert. But do it quickly. People want to learn from you. Not listen to your life story, though I’m sure it’s fascinating.

Manage your time

Ask if anyone has the experience to share. This invites participation and immediately makes it more of a conversation than a presentation. This kind of discussion can enrich the presentation by making it more relevant and real. Just don’t lose control. Manage your time and move on when you need to.

Present the material. Clearly, concisely and in a manner that helps people remember your message later. That can be through bold visuals, props, a listing of your top three to five points, and through stories. We remember anecdotes, the more personal the better. “I witnessed… I experienced…”

Modulate your energy level to capture and maintain attention. Provide variety. Raise and lower your volume to create interest and emphasize key points. Enunciate so people don’t have to strain to catch your words. Show your enthusiasm.

Help people understand the relevance of what you’re sharing. If something appears to have no connection to you, you’ll tune it out. Find commonality. This requires an understanding of your audience. Why should they care about what you say? Answer that question in your presentation.

Think about what your audience needs and wants to know. The curse of knowledge can make us blind to key points we should make but don’t. Put yourself in their place.

Make eye contact

Watch your audience. Make eye contact. Ensure people are engaged. Pick up on cues people may be sending. Are they acting restless? Checking the time? Even worse, nodding off?

Finally

Leave ample time for Q&A. Too often we squander the front end of our presentation with useless chitchat or meandering, then scramble and cut things short toward the end. The question-and-answer period can be the most important part of your presentation. Don’t give it short shrift.

Open your Q&A by asking, “Before I close, do you have any questions?” This lets people know you will remain in control and you will close the session on time, not simply trail off. Always repeat questions to ensure everyone heard it – and that you heard it correctly, too. This also buys you a little time to formulate your answer.

If you get unfriendly or combative questions, answer them as factually as you can and move on. Same thing with soft questions. If someone asks something that doesn’t advance understanding or add anything new, don’t spend any more time on those than you need to. Try to add some new information then move on.

Close by repeating your key points. Thank your audience and provide your email or a link where attendees can download your presentation or resources or follow up with you individually. Do all this and your next presentation ought to be a winner.

 

Source: www.gretemangroup.com

Great Speech

In these strange times of physical distancing that may be with us for a lot longer than we think, social gatherings are being minimized, leading to smaller groups of people together at the one time. Family occasions, such as weddings are immediately effected, where the Bride & Groom have to cut invitees significantly. With smaller weddings being the norm for a while, speeches at weddings may be delivered in smaller venues (even in homes) and therefore sound systems i.e. microphone/speakers might not be available to / for the speakers.

Over the years I’ve worked with many clients who have asked me to teach them to project their voice further. I’ve discovered that most people do know how to project their voice, the problem is often the speaker’s perception of how loudly (or quietly) they’re actually speaking…

Try this. Have someone you trust to stand in the back of a room while you speak in the front. When you stop, write down how you perceived your volume on a scale of 1-10. Then ask the listener to do the same. You’ll likely be surprised to find the listener perceived you as much quieter than you thought. Occasionally I work with someone with the opposite problem. They think they are speaking at a normal volume when in fact they’re speaking much louder. This same technique can help you gauge that too.

Most of the time, if you’re speaking in front of a group, you’ll have the aid of a microphone. But there are times when you need to project your voice without a microphone. I have a client who is an Orthodox Jewish rabbi and his beliefs prohibit the use of a microphone to deliver his weekly sermon. Naturally, he speaks in front of a large group each week and his voice needs to be heard.

You too can learn to make your voice carry further and sound louder. It requires a little work, but it will save you from straining your vocal cords.

Here are 3 best practices you can incorporate today:

Breathe Properly

The way you breathe affects the way your voice comes out.  After all, air flowing over your vocal cords is the reason you have a voice at all.

If you breathe shallowly, you will quickly run out of the air, and then your throat muscles tense up to try to squeeze the sound out.  Your voice will sound strained and lack carrying power.  It’s hard on your vocal cords, too.

When you take the time to fill your lungs, it’s as if your voice is riding on a supportive cushion of air, and your throat muscles can stay relaxed.  Your voice will carry better and have a richer, more pleasing sound.

Most people only fill the top of their lungs when they breathe, but in fact, your lungs are larger at the bottom than at the top.  To get a good breath, you need to fill your lungs all the way to the bottom.   Ask any musician who plays the trumpet, tuba, or any other wind instrument and they will tell you that your waist and abdomen must move outward as you inhale and back in as you exhale.  Your chest stays quiet.

If you’ve never done this before, imagine that you are filling your lungs from the bottom up, as if it were water instead of air. Place your hands on your abdomen. You should be able to feel and see your abdomen push out when you breathe properly. Keep your hands there to feel it deflate as you speak.

Articulate with Energy

You might not realize that how well you articulate your words impacts how far your voice carries. You have all the tools you need to articulate clearly; the jaw, the lips, and the tongue. But most people have rather lazy diction (including me!).  You need to use these tools with energy to create clear, crisp consonants.

When you put energy into your muscles of articulation, your voice will lift up and away from your throat muscles and into your face. It actually moves into your cheeks bones and sinus cavities.

Your cheekbones act like the sounding board of a piano, and your sinus cavities (assuming you don’t have a cold) resonate like a big, open room.  That means your voice will have more resonance and will project better to your listeners.

Think of how much energy it takes to run the length of a soccer field or basketball court.  Clear articulation requires just as much energy; you’re simply using smaller muscles.

Don’t Push Your Voice Harder – Make it Bigger

Have you ever been in this situation: You’re trying to make an announcement, but the noise in the room is drowning you out. You ask for quiet, but no one hears you. So you raise your voice and then raise it again. It still doesn’t work. Someone finally whistles loudly and the noise stops so you can talk. But afterwards, your throat muscles tense up and you find yourself rubbing them and looking for a glass of water.

When you push your voice, you really don’t make yourself easier to hear. Instead, you make yourself hoarse and you might even damage your vocal cords.

Instead of pushing, imagine that the inside of your throat and mouth are large, as large as the room you’re speaking in.  That will cause all the muscles around the inside of your throat to pull away, just as they do when you are yawning.  The bigger space inside, the bigger the voice outside.

Source: Lisa B. Marshall – The Public Speaker

help with speach Galway

Meghan Gonzalez says that one of the biggest obstacles to writing a speech is time. Again and again, clients will tell me, “I simply don’t have the time to prepare. From the moment I get into the office, I have back-to-back calls all day. How do I find the time?”

There is no alternative to preparation. However, given time constraints, I’ve devised a system of helping you write a speech when necessary in 30 minutes.

Don’t have 30 minutes? Take one minute and think about the potential of your speech. If your speech is effective, could it change the behaviours of your employees, your volunteers, your neighbours? Could it have a direct, positive impact on the success of your business or non-profit? On your reputation? If so, isn’t it worth it to spend 30 minutes on the speech instead of another meeting or telephone call? Let your sense of purpose help you prioritize.

Here is my advice on how to write a speech when you only have 30 minutes:

  • Find a quiet room, close the door, and turn off your digital devices
    1.  If you are writing on a computer, turn off email notifications.
    2. It’s important to give yourself a clear head to think.
    3. Personally, I start this process in the morning before I even check the day’s emails.
    4. Take three deep breaths before you begin, in order to focus your mind.
  • Ask yourself the three Questions
    1. Who is your audience?
    2. What is your goal?
    3. Why you?
  1. It’s essential that you know who will be in the room during your speech, what you want them to do as a result of hearing you speak, and why this subject is important to you. This strategic preparation will help you think of material to use in the speech itself.
  • Think of one main message
    1. What is the main message you want to get across?
    2. Which examples, data, and stories can you use to illustrate that message?
    3. Try to include both numbers and stories to make an impact on everyone in your audience.
  • Draft your speech in bullet points
    1. Not word-for-word. With only 30 minutes to prepare, you don’t have time to write a script.
    2. Simply outline your main points – you’ll fill in the rest as you practice. Think about unique ways to engage your audience.
  • Write out your first and last sentences
    1. The first and last sentences are the most important parts of any speech.
  • Keep it simple
    1. With limited time to prepare a speech, avoid using slides.
    2. You are better off focusing on the content of your speech rather than the design of your slides.
  • Print out your bullet points in large font
    1. It’s OK to bring notes with you to a speech.
    2. Print out the bullet points in large enough font, on single-sided paper, and write page numbers at the top.

At this point, your first draft of the speech is finished. Now, here are 3 ways to practice the speech.

  • Read the speech out loud and time yourself
    1. Make sure the language sounds like your own words as opposed to your organization’s jargon
    2. Make sure you are keeping to the allotted time, we tend to underestimate the length of our speech until we read it out loud.
  • Practice and record yourself with your smartphone
    1. It is so important to see how you look on camera before you stand in front of an audience. Think about your body language and your vocal tone – do your movements and tone match your words?
  • Close your eyes
    1. Envision yourself giving a powerful speech from start to finish.
    2. Picture the standing ovation at the end and let yourself feel that sense of accomplishment.
    3. Research shows that we remember visualizations in the same part of our brain as actual memories, so imagining a speech helps us feel like we’ve actually delivered it.

 

While I always recommend spending at least a week preparing your speech, reality sometimes dictates otherwise. In only 30 minutes, you can write a clear and concise speech. Spend a little more time on practice and delivery, and you will give a more confident, authentic and impactful speech.

Sources: allisonshapira.com

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Marcel Schwantes, Founder and Chief Human Officer, Leadership From the Core, communication expert and best-selling author, offer’s us nine helpful strategies to eliminate presentation or “speech” anxiety, based on author and public speaking expert David Greenberg.

Some people rank the fear of public speaking higher than the fear of death! It is very real and can be debilitating. Even billionaire Warren Buffett admits that early in his career he was terrified of public speaking. He decided that to reach his full potential, he had to overcome his fear of it. If you are faced with a similar challenge, there are several techniques to help you overcome your fears.

  1. Accept that being nervous is not a bad thing

 Greenberg says, “Being nervous means you care about giving a good presentation. Your nervousness produces adrenaline, which helps you think faster, speak more fluently, and add the needed enthusiasm to convey your message.

  1. Don’t try to be perfect

 Greenberg explains that the fear of public speaking often stems from a fear of imperfection. He urges us to “accept the fact that no one ever gets it perfect and neither will you.” Rather than striving to become a “super-speaker,” Greenberg’s simple advice is to just be yourself. “Your audience will appreciate it,” he says.

  1. Know your subject matter

One must “earn the right,” says Greenberg, to speak on a particular topic. “Become an authority on your topic and know more than most or all of the people in your audience. The more you know, the more confident you will be,” he says

  1. Engage your audience

 Audience involvement is key. Ask your audience questions or have them participate in an activity to hold their attention. Greenberg says that turning your presentation from monologue to dialogue helps reduce your nervousness and engages the audience

  1. Breathe

Breathing from your stomach muscles, not your chest calms the nervous system. Here’s what to do: Take a few deep breaths before and even during your presentation. “As you inhale,” says Greenberg, “say to yourself ‘I am,’ and as you exhale, say ‘relaxed.'”

  1. Visualize your success

 Close your eyes and picture yourself delivering your talk with confidence and
enthusiasm. What does the room look like? What do the people look like? How do you look? “Picture your successful presentation in detail and allow your mind to help turn your picture into a reality,” says Greenberg.

  1. Practice out loud

 

The best way to reduce your anxiety is to rehearse until you feel comfortable, advises Greenberg. “Practicing by yourself is important,” he says, “but I urge you to also practice in front of a friend, colleague, or coach who will give you honest and constructive feedback.”

  1. Avoid caffeine and alcohol

 Caffeinated drinks can increase your heart rate, make you jittery, and cause your hands to shake, which gives your audience the impression you’re a nervous wreck. And, it goes without saying, drinking alcohol to cope with your fears will increase your chances of forgetting things and slurring your words

  1. Make eye contact

 Greenberg suggests arriving early when the room is full of empty chairs and practising by “pretending that you are looking into people’s eyes.” When you begin your talk, pick a few friendly faces in different areas of the room. Says Greenberg, “Not only will the audience appreciate it, but also you will see that they are interested in your message. Add a smile and you are bound to see some in return.”