As a leader, you must build lots of different skills to succeed, and one of these is public speaking. Several different elements contribute to the delivery of a powerful public speaker, and it’s important to be aware of them so you can set yourself up for success on the platform.
In this post, we’ll provide you with some insight into the seven main elements of public speaking. We’ll also discuss how you can improve your public speaking skills by attending our Public Speaking Masterclass.
Getting familiar with the main elements of public speaking
Understanding the main elements of public speaking is essential. Once you’re familiar with the different components, you can organise and deliver your speech more effectively. Below are the seven main elements to consider for public speaking.
1. The speaker
You, the speaker, are the source of the message. Without speakers, there’s no public speaking, so you’re one of the most pivotal points of the speech. Remember that people came to hear from you, so try not to become so obsessed with the visuals and the materials themselves that you forget this.
2. The message
Your message, of course, is what you’re going to tell people and you can analyse it into three key elements:
- Content, which is what you say.
- Structure, which is how you organise your message and should consist of an intro, body, and conclusion. Your structure is important because your audience should be able to follow you throughout the speech. You should transition smoothly from point to point, with each point building on the one before, instead of going off on lots of different tangents. If you don’t structure your talk well, you’ll lose your audience.
- Style, which is the way you present the speech. This can be formal or informal. It all depends on where you’re giving the speech, the occasion, the audience, and what is most appropriate for you.
3. The audience or receiver
You should always analyse your audience before you present to them, and you should always adapt to them, both in terms of how you dress and how you speak. When analysing your audience, you should consider the following important elements:
- their requirements;
- their gender;
- their race;
- their location;
- their trade or profession;
- their activity;
- the type of group (homogeneous or heterogeneous).
All of the aspects outlined will influence how you decide to present your material.
A speaker will use lots of different channels when they communicate with their audience.
- the nonverbal channel, which consists of gestures, facial expressions, movement, and posture;
- the visual channel, under which you’ll find drawings, diagrams, photos, graphics, videos, or objects;
- and the auditory channel, which can include things such as tone of voice, variations in volume, and audio materials.
Feedback is more important than you might realise. Through feedback, you receive the response or information from your audience, and this feedback will indicate how the speaking engagement is going for you.
You have to pay great attention to your audience’s concerns and address them. Watch out for nonverbal reactions in the audience and be ready to respond to them. Informing your audience of everything they need to hear is part of your responsibility as a speaker.
When you’re speaking, you should be aware of two types of noise: internal and external.
The internal noise arises if you, the speaker, get confused or provide an unclear message. The external noise could be anything such as the temperature (too hot), laughter, bad ventilation, low light or other visual interference, or obstacles between you and the audience.
To tackle any sort of noise, ensure that the venue is conditioned for speaking in public. Keep your message clear and concise, repeat your ideas, and use both verbal and nonverbal communication channels at the same time.
7. The venue or situation
The venue for your speech is one of the most critical elements in the success of public speaking. You should visit the space where you’ll be delivering your speech and find out the exact spot where you’ll be presenting. Take note of the seating, air conditioning, lighting, tables, space, the platform arrangement, etc, and other details, and coordinate everything so you can take any necessary precautions.
Boost your public speaking with us
You can improve your public speaking skills by enrolling on our Public Speaking Masterclass. On this 1-day virtual training course, you’ll learn about timing your delivery, ditching data dumps, and other effective public speaking techniques from an experienced, award-winning presenter and speaking expert.
The course is open to mid-to-senior level managers in both the public and private sectors, and you can enrol whether you have experience in public speaking or otherwise. It’s all about sharpening up your skills so you can deliver your talks confidently and have more impact.
You can join the course by clicking on the ‘Book your place’. You can book places on more of our courses, or find out more about them, by visiting our Courses Page and then going to the specific course page. We’re happy to answer any questions, and you can reach us at firstname.lastname@example.org, via the form on our Contact Page, or 0161 826 3139.
We understand just how important professional development is, so feel free to ask us for any advice and we’ll point you in the right direction. We look forward to speaking to you.
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