No one is born as a wonderful public speaker. Some factors could shape a person’s perception of life, make them learn things faster and express themselves at will. Conversely, there are factors that would make a person shy away from public speaking. The main thing is that few people are born with public speaking abilities. 

But if you weren’t born with such instinct, it is not the end of the journey. The skills needed for public speaking can be learned or mastered.

Becoming an excellent public speaker means that one has mastered a skill or an art. The significant difference between mediocre public speakers and excellent public speakers is the zeal and will to develop their skills in the art.

Public speaking transcends mere written notes on a piece of paper or device. It has a lot to do with what is said and the way it has said. An excellent public speaker also knows that their mannerisms and body language say a lot about how good they are as public speakers. It takes more than just wanting to stand before people and talk to become a public speaker. Finally, a public speaker understands that public speaking is a dynamic art, and there is always a need to improve on the skill with the use of available resources.

Are you terrified because you do not possess the qualities of a good speaker? Do you wish you had the eloquence to hold peoples’ attention? Do you struggle with getting your message across effectively? Do you need to acquire the skill of public speaking to be able to progress in your career? If your answer to these questions is “yes”, then, you need to even further ask yourself, “who is a good public speaker?”

A woman talking
Public speakers know how to use words to express themselves. Source: Unsplash
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What Makes Public Speaking Effective?

Before undertaking the task of acquiring public speaking skills, one needs to know at least what the characteristics of excellent public speaking. Some of the essential features of an excellent public speaker include the following:

Confidence

The first thing to notice about excellent public speakers is how they dress themselves up with confidence. Confidence makes up for anything else that they might lack and is also the key to a powerful presentation or speech. People are more likely to listen to a confident public speaker because they would consider whatever the speaker says to be accurate, well-thought-out, and intelligent. 

On the other hand, the lack of confidence makes people lose interest in what a speaker is saying. They do not trust that what is being said is intelligent, accurate, or even properly researched.

Confidence is visibly noticed in body language and mannerisms. A confident person does not speak nervously, fidget, fret or mumble their words. They speak with clarity and control. Which enables them to keep control of their nerves. Understanding that confidence is one of the significant attributes of a speaker will help you learn how to boost their confidence levels to excel in public speaking. One of the best ways to improve confidence levels is to rehearse and practice as much as possible. What you do repeatedly becomes second nature to you and will eventually become easier to do.

Engage with Your Audience

The best public speakers understand that they need to carry the audience along at all times. They build their speech and presentations around conversations so that there are interactions. The need to engage the audience is never lost on them. Your audience's attention is significant, and the best way to hold it for a long time is to communicate in a manner they could relate with easily. 

You can engage your audience by taking suggestions from them, asking questions, and also allowing them to ask questions. You can use them for practical examples. One way to know if you have your audience's attention is to observe what they are doing while you are giving a speech. 

If you have more people on their phones or other devices or even talking to each other, you are not effectively engaging the audience. It also helps to always use storytelling as a means to engage your audience. Everyone loves a good story. Tell them one. 

Preparedness

Regardless of how long or short your speech is, it is necessary to prepare before a presentation, even if all you have is a few minutes.

Everyone can tell when a person is not prepared. The audience does not take seriously any public speaker that has not arranged their thoughts, calmed their nerves, and put the words they want to say right.

A studio
You need to prepare adequately before you deliver any speech. Source: Unsplash

Signs of unpreparedness include lack of transition from one point to the other. For example, when the chronology of narration is not in order when the speaker keeps running back to their flashcards, stumbles on words or says some unverified statement. 

See how you can become a confident speaker. 

It becomes clear that such a speaker is unprepared. A good speaker knows how significant it is to take a moment to prepare adequately before they make their presentation.

Why Develop Public Speaking skills?

  • Career

Your career or profession would benefit significantly if you take steps to develop public speaking skills. At every point, there is often a need in almost all industries or sectors to make presentations. Anyone that can do it perfectly is mostly considered suitable and capable of handling prominent positions. Public speaking skills might be the bridge that will connect you to the next phase of your career.

  • Effective Communication

Aside from the excitement and headiness of delivering presentations and giving big speeches, it is essential to acquire public speaking skills to communicate effectively and with clarity. Public speaking skill would teach you how to deliver whatever message you have, no matter how diverse and significant the crowd might be. You are always a better communicator when you are an excellent public speaker.

The Best Resources for Developing Public Speaking Skills

Do you want to become an effective speaker in no time? There are many resources available to enable you to learn these important skills and you could even begin right away. When the skill is acquired and developed, the understanding that will make presenting much easier makes the availability of these resources much more appreciated.

Most people shy away from searching and using resources on public speaking simply because they think they are too expensive and they cannot afford them. However, most resources and materials online are free or very affordable and put together by experts on the subject. These resources will help you improve your skills in public speaking. Some of the best resources available include the following:

  • Toastmasters International

Many aspiring public speakers have benefited considerably from using Toastmasters. Anyone interested in becoming a better presenter and public speaker should consider using Toastmasters. You can consider seeking out a Toastmasters class that’s within your proximity. They offer free tips and suggestions, which focus on presentations such as accepting awards, developing the best sales pitches, and even speaking at wedding receptions.

Garr Reynolds

Garr Reynolds writes bestsellers such as Presentation Zen Design, The Naked Presenter, and even the Presentation Zen. Garr Reynolds has a website with lots of helpful information that can help improve public speaking skills. He also has a blog, known as Presentation Zen with useful content on tips and suggestions to make public speaking seamless.

Events

More often than not, the best place to learn public speaking is to seek mentor-ship from renowned speakers. Find someone you can easily relate with to provide you with hands- on training on the essentials of public speaking. 

The good thing about this valuable human resource is that you will be able to receive correction and appraisal  for your work. And whenever you make mistakes, you will be able to correct them without repeating them in subsequent presentations.

Anyone can tell apart a good speech from an inefficient one. Each time you attend an event, you may find the presentation excellent, poor or average.

A wedding
Events are a great resource to learn public speaking skills from others. Source: Unsplash

However it is, it is an opportunity to learn what not to do or say when you have an opportunity to speak before an audience. On the other hand, when a good speech or presentation is delivered at an event, you learn what to do and what to say. There is always a lesson when you go to an event.

Also, events are good opportunities for you to try out public speaking. For example, networking events often allow attendees to give brief pitches of what they do and offer. This allows you to see how people respond to your presentation, control your nervousness, and practice how to become an excellent public speaker. You hardly have anything to lose by going to formal and informal events for the sake of sharpening your public speaking skills.

Endeavor to always seek for trending resources to improve your public speaking skills. A quick search on the internet would expose you to blogs, videos, letters, and even podcasts that teach the skills needed for effective public speaking. These skills are always beneficial in the long run. Focus on it and give it your best shot.   

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Marvis

Marvis Osarhenrhen is a freelance SEO writer that is focused on helping businesses reach their target audience, get leads and drive revenue through optimised content.