Nobody is born with great public speaking skills. But anyone can achieve it if they know useful public speaking tips.
Public Speaking is the fear of 77% population and is usually called the Glossophobia phenomenon.
But when we can get over this fear, a variety of opportunities will be opened.
Personally, I am not an extrovert person who wants to connect and talk in front of many people, however, after 27 years, life teaches me so many valuable lessons and one of them is being an extrovert person is something that I MUST BE.
At least for the people who want/work in the education and business fields as I am doing now.
Let’s think if you are a lecturer who wants to share your insights with thousands of students but you are afraid of public speaking!
Or if you have a great business plan and product that is ready for the funding round to raise million dollars but you are so afraid to stand on the stage to share your vision and strategies with the investors.
A good public speaking skill will help you a lot and give you a chance to go closer to your goals in these fields — being a great lecturer or giving a great speech in your funding round.
The following list is 5 things that I did and still practice for years to improve my public speaking skills. And I believe that in some ways it also can support you too when you can apply them to your life for a better speaking skill.
1. Public Speaking Tip 1: Raise your hand whenever you have a chance
In your class, in your office, or even in your networking events.
Anytime you have a chance, let practice showing your own opinions with others.
This is what I did a lot in my student’s life and until now, in the networking events that I have a chance to join in, I still keep this habit. The reason for this practice is it helps you to improve your confidence to share your own thoughts.
It doesn’t matter how great your thoughts are until you can share them properly with others and make them also feel “WOW!” about what you have in your mind.
I love to practice my speaking skill by raising my hand because it helps me to learn and practice how to structure my ideas and questions better through many times I stand up and share my views in the class or events.
Let’s think about yourself, have you ever experienced the feeling that you have a great idea/or you already have the answer to the question that the MC asked in your mind, but you are so shy and decide to observe others answer the questions instead of you?
How do you feel at that moment?
Did you feel regret or think like “This is what I already know and I also can answer…”.
Or how about you stand up and share the thoughts that make all the room feel WOW and give you big applause? Should we consider it as a better option?
… The right answer inside you!
2. Public Speaking Tip 2: Practice alone — Small Group — Your Big Stage
It means that you let yourself practice alone in front of the mirror/the walls many times to share your ideas properly. Then practice sharing your view in your small group — It can be your class group, company small team, or even your family members at the dinner table before standing on the stage to share with a hundred or even thousands of people.
So why should I do that?
This is the question that appears in my mind many times before and maybe in your mind now when you read this article.
The answer is “The COMPOUND EFFECT”.
Confidence and great public speaking skill can’t be gained just by thinking or coming overnight.
These all take time to improve and practice.
And the best way to help you reduce the number of mistakes that you can face when standing on the stage to share an important speech is by daily practice. So practice from self-talk in front of the mirror to sharing your points of view in a small group are valuable ways to help you improve this skill.
3. Public Speaking Tip 3: Don’t just READ, let SHARE
Let’s ask yourself, have you ever seen someone (or even yourself) who stands on the stage with a piece of paper and READ ALOUD the paper to the audience? I believe that all of us at least one time in life see this situation.
And should we call it “PUBLIC SPEAKING SKILL”?
My answer is NO!
Instead, it just means READING!
Public speaking skill is something else that is very different.
The famous people who are super good at public speaking skills can be named as Martin Luther King, Jr., Bill Clinton, Anthony Robbins, Winston Churchill,…who are usually engaged with audiences by sharing their own views on their speeches without using the paper to read.
And what makes them really different is they use their speeches to reach others’ emotions and insights rather than just reach their ears by the voice.
4. Public Speaking Tip 4: Your micro is your friend, not your enemy
And if you really want to be a good public speaker, you need to feel comfortable and familiar with talking through the microphone.
This is a big lesson that took me more than 3 years to figure out and can control.
Before that moment, I always think that the biggest problem comes from the microphone as it changes my voice to a different version that is heard terribly.
Because when you use a microphone, you can hear clearly how your voice is, and in most of the cases, when I asked my friends, they all believe that their natural voices are so good and get worse when they speak through a microphone.
But actually, it is not really the problem.
The problem here is you feel weird with your voice (when it becomes x10 times louder than normal) — It happens all the time, especially with the people who rarely use the microphone to share their thoughts.
As a lecturer in the University, I met a lot of students who have really good ideas and are happy to share their own points of view with the class, but with a requirement — DON’T USE THE MICROPHONE.
The reason for the denial to use the microphone is the feeling of having the wrong answer that can be heard by all the class or the thoughts about their voices on the micro is terrible.
But actually, as the lecturer and a person who has experience speaking many hours a day in front of hundreds of people, I recognize that the microphone is the best friend for all the public speakers. Because:
- It helps you to save A LOT OF energy, especially on the big stage.
- You can easily move around the class/stage but your voice is still stable and can be reached similarly between all the audiences in the room.
So, before wanting to be a better public speaker, let’s start to make friends and feel familiar with your microphone.
5. Public Speaking Tip 5: Never talk alone, engage with your audience.
Once upon a day,
In a class of…., while the lecturer is sharing his points of view for 10 minutes, all the class is concentrated and feels exciting….
1 hour later, more than half of the class fell asleep, while some left the class already…while the lecturer was still talking and talking…
Have you heard this kind of story before?
This is a real story that happens in many places, not only in schools but also in the conferences, seminars…where the speaker who just talks by himself and shares his powerpoints while the audiences are yawning and feel tired to listen.
This is one of the biggest mistakes for any public speaker.
And it doesn’t matter how big your stage is, but if you are on the micro but you can’t engage with others and make them fall asleep or want to leave.
YOU LOSE THE PUBLIC SPEAKING GAME.
Getting involved with the audience by asking them questions or giving them a chance to show their own points of view on your presentation topic will help your listeners feel more excited and really get into your speech.
The more your audience is involved in the speech, the more successful your presentation is.
To summarize, these are several key points that I believe you should master to be a better speaker.
- Raise your hand more to practice your confidence and speaking skills.
- Practice daily self-talk to speak in small groups. Master your speaking skills in small stages for the great wins on the bigger stages.
- Don’t just read, let’s share your stories. Be a friend to share and touch the emotions of listeners rather than just read your paper on the stage.
- Let the micro be your best friend on the stage, not something you are afraid to use.
- Always engage with your audience, don’t let them feel separated in your speech, and don’t let yourself be the only one who wants to discuss the topic.
- Public speaking: Nghệ thuật nói trước công chúng
- Funding round: vòng gọi vốn
- Glossophobia phenomenon: hiện tượng Glossophobia, còn được gọi là chứng lo lắng khi nói trước đám đông
- The compound effect: Hiệu ứng cộng hưởng
- Your micro is your friend, not your enemy: Micro là người bạn của bạn, chứ không phải kẻ thù
- Weird: kỳ lạ
- Engage with your audience: Kết nối với khán giả của bạn
- Self-talk: Tự nói chuyện
- Fear: Nỗi sợ
- Opportunity: cơ hội