Public speaking is an art of delivering a speech in front of an audience. Speaking in front of a group takes a lot of courage and preparation. You need skills to be a good public speaker. Below are 10 characteristics of a good public speaker.
- Knowledge. It is important that you know what you are talking about. Read, read and read. Being a wide-reader is a great help because you have a better idea of the topic you need to discuss.
- Preparation. Nothing can replace good planning and preparation. Analyze what you need for your speech, like visual aids. Review your speech. The more prepared you are in your speech, the more likely you will succeed in delivering it.
- Message. Your message should suit your audience. Evaluate your message. Ask yourself these questions:
- Does it teach something new to your audience that they did not know before?
- Does it entertain your audience?
- Does it persuade your audience to practice what you have discussed?
- Does your speech share knowledge that can help people?
- Language. Learn to use the appropriate words to suit your audience and occasion. Avoid using jargons. Use simple and understandable terms. Refrain from using uhm’s and ah’s. Using these words convey lack of confidence and knowledge of your subject. Instead, pause whenever you need to recall what you need to say.
- Self-confidence. By no means should you let your audience doubt your ability. You can show your confidence by looking well prepared and delivering your speech well.
- Enthusiasm. A good speaker can reach out to his audience and exhibit enthusiasm in his work no matter how he feels. He shows vitality in his topics, his choice of words and his gestures.
- Listening skills. You also need to be a good listener in order to be an effective speaker. There are three type of listening according to their purpose:
- Emphatic listening – you provide emotional support to the person who is talking.
- Comprehensive listening – you gather information to form an accurate conclusion or idea. You focus on details and facts.
- Critical listening – this type of listening is most useful in decision making.
- Sense of self. This pertains to how you perceive yourself. It is communicated to your audience as confidence, self-assurance and power.
- Integrity. Your sense of self forms your integrity. People listen to you if you have respect and confidence in conveying your message.
- Sincerity. A good speaker believes in what he is saying.
The ability to speak in public pays well in every part of your life, whether you are in a small group sharing opinions or delivering a speech in front of an organization.