Archive for the ‘General’ Category

Public Speaking Enthusiasm

Saturday, August 13th, 2011
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Enthusiasm can be a powerful persuader in public speaking. Here is some information on enthusiasm.

Enthusiasm is not limited to the field of  life insurance or to any other service. Its existence depends upon the attitude a person has. A menial service may inspire it. For instance, Raymond Middleton of Detroit became highly enthusiastic about hauling garbage. At the age of fifty-nine he retired from driving a city garbage truck after thirty-one years service. With tears in his eyes he said, “It’s hard to give up something you love. And this job I really love. At first I hated it but the longer I worked at it the more I grew to love it.”
This is a case of enthusiasm being stimulated by a person’s attitude. Nobody can be enthusiastic about work, a speech, or anything else if he is ashamed of his service. But he becomes enthusiastic when he feels his service is really beneficial to people. And when he feels his service is the most important activity in the world he adds more voltage to his enthusiasm.
No one will be enthusiastic unless he wants to be. A company order that “Everyone must be enthusiastic at his work,” will not stimulate enthusiasm, for it depends upon the willingness of an individual.
A full-blooded American Indian, for instance, who was in a business and professional speaking course, could not be enthusiastic when he spoke because he had always been taught to shun enthusiasm. This Indian was not the kind who would shout war whoops as he swung a tomahawk. He talked more like a timid schoolboy on his first date. Finally he told the instructor that all his life he had been taught not to be enthusiastic. And he believed he should not. Naturally with such a mental attitude he could not speak dynamically.Other people, some well-educated, confuse enthusiasm with fanaticism. A fanatical speaker loses control of his emotions. His speaking becomes ridiculous or repulsive rather than persuasive for most listeners. But who would object to the type of enthusiasm that Coleman Cox described: “Inspired by reason, controlled by caution; sound in theory; practical in application; reflects confidence; spreads good cheer; raises morale; inspires association; arouses loyalty, and laughs at adversity.”
This is the type of enthusiasm a speaker needs.
People who are “naturally” enthusiastic are that way because of habits they have developed, perhaps unconsciously. But those habits can be developed consciously until they become natural qualities of a personality.

Have you ever tried to consciously develop enthusiasm? My next post will reveal someways that can be used to do this.

In the meantime if you want to be a successful presenter or public speaker you can try oout our free 7 day e-course by entering your name and email into the box on the right.

Making Your Speech Vivid

Sunday, January 23rd, 2011
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Here is another great way to make your speech sparkle.

Still another way to make speech vivid or colorful is to use exaggerated pictures, or hyperbole.
For instance, a businessman said in a speech, “I thought this family was poor, but when I walked into the house the first thing I saw was a television set as big as that piano!”
Of course, he knew, and his listeners knew, that the television set was not half as large as the upright piano to which he referred. But making this comparison was far more impressive than simply saying, “When I entered the room I saw a big television set.” And this type of exaggeration is ethical in public speaking because it is not really an attempt to deceive an audience.
Another speaker, when talking about a gossiping woman said, “Her tongue was so long she could sit in the parlor and lick a skillet in the kitchen!”
Still another remarked, “The restaurant was so crowded that when a man bent over to tie his shoe, a waitress slapped a table-cloth and four plates on his back before he could straighten up.”
Ridiculous? Yes. But it vividly supports a point, and adds interest to a speech which might otherwise be dull.
Also understatements, such as, “Her mouth looked like a button-hole that had been washed in alum,” or, “I could have stuffed his toothpick body into my shirt pocket and have had plenty of room to spare,” may add color and interest to a speech.
All figures of speech should be chosen with care and used only when and where they aptly fit the situation or speech theme. They should never be “pulled in by the ears,” misused, or over-used. Rather, they should be used as verbal salt to season a speech and make it palatable for listeners’ minds.

I hope you have found this series on adding interest and color to your public speaking through similes and exaggerations useful. Let me know if you’ve found it useful,

How Do You Communicate Effectively?

Monday, October 18th, 2010
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There are many different ways you can use to help keep your speech on track. Here are a few examples:

Some speakers use numerous note cards. These require considerable handling which may distract an audience’s attention, to some extent at least, from the speaker’s ideas. A less obtrusive method is to use a standard sheet of typing paper for the notes. After this paper is placed upon a speaker’s stand it need not be touched again until after the speaker has concluded his talk.
There should be enough notes to jog a speaker’s memory suf¬ficiently. But no more. Leaning heavily upon notes detracts from a direct communication between speaker and audience. Usually a few words on any one point is enough. Simply the letters, T. R., for instance, would remind a speaker to1 use his illustration about Theodore Roosevelt. Mark Twain liked to sketch pictures on his note paper to remind him of points.
Use anything that works for you. The point is not to make an artisticor “correct” outline but one that will help you communicate ideas effectively to an audience.
Never try to hide the notes or to conceal the fact that you are using them, as one speaker is said to have done. He kept the notes in his inside coat pocket. Occasionally he turned from the audience and took a peek. But once he became excited and said, “The next point is … The next point is — Montgomery Ward and Company!”

Have you got any favorite ways you use? Whwt works best for you?

Using Enthusiasm In Your Speech

Sunday, October 3rd, 2010
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What do you think about enthusiam? Can you use it in your next speech. Here are some real life examples how enthusiasm changed people’s lives:-

When a person finds a cause or subject that grips him to a point where it demands his energy, steals his time, and inspires his soul, then he has something upon which he can really speak enthusiastically. Such a cause or subject usually involves some useful service. Speaking about it will lift one to the heights of enthusiasm and give him the joy of knowing he has done some¬thing really worthwhile in life.
Enthusiasm is a joyous, commendable quality. An enthusiast finds a happiness in his work or service which transcends a dollar mark. He is not a clock-watcher, but works for “love of the game.” In his mind his work, purpose, or subject is the most important one in the world.
This attitude was evident in an uneducated, penniless emi¬grant who came to America from Poland.. He became vitally interested in selling life insurance, however, and educated him¬self as best he could. This young immigrant, according to Dar¬win P. Kingsley, sales manager for the New York Life Insurance Company, would rather sell insurance than eat. .
“I have known him to reserve a table for New Year’s Eve and then give up the party at the last minute to talk insurance to some prospect,” said Kingsley. “He believes in this company and its policies with a fierce intensity. Selling life insurance is the greatest thing in his life.” Because of his unlimited enthu¬siasm this salesman sold more insurance than all forty other men from the same office. Each year he earned more than a hundred thousand dollars in commissions alone. What kind of
speech.could he make on insurance?
Some years later Frank Bettger attributed his tremendous success in selling insurance to enthusiasm. When he spoke about selling, his listeners were persuaded largely because he was so highly enthusiastic about his subject. He advised, “Act enthusias¬tically and you’ll be enthusiastic.” Acting upon his own advice Bettger plunged into selling with all the fervor at his command. He arose from the ranks of failure to lead the entire field for several years. Frank Bettger put “heart” into his work and into his speeches. His acting was real. Enthusiasm became a part of him, not like a fancy coat he might have worn when he called on forty thousand prospects.

Can you use enthusiasm in your next speech? Or do you think enthusiasm is outdated and people do not respond to it today? Let me know what you think

Public Speaking – Become an Effective Speaker – Likeability

Wednesday, April 29th, 2009
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The third characteristic of an effective speaker is likeability. In public speaking as with day to day conversation people will respond to your message more favourably if they like you.

Your audience want to like you.  They will enjoy listening to you and will not be as skeptical about what you have to say. It is a hard characteristic to have and it can take time to develop it in public speaking.

The qualities that will help improve your likeability quotient are:-

1.  Be interested in your audience – Take an active and genuine interest in what they have   to say and show that you care about them. Developing your active listening skills will help immensely. The interest needs to genuine or people will find out and you will lose their goodwill.

2. Be positve, have an upbeat tone,  and smile. As in all works of life, your audience will enjoy listening to a message that is upbeat and accentuates the positive. It makes them feel better. A negative and dull delivery is a big turn off.  

Smile and look upwards and it will make you feel more upbeat and positive. Conversely looking downwards and frowning will dampen your mood. As a rule people like to smile and it is contagious. 

Another technique is to consciously choose your attitude. If you are going to ther you might as well as enjoy it.

3. Keep their point of view in mind when developing your speech. This will demonstrate that you care about them through your speech.

If you are not naturally that way it will take some effort to develop. It is worth persevering with because your speech will be better received, it will be easier to achieve your objective and your audience will want you back. 

For more tips on public speaking and conversation visit to claim a free preview of The Art of Great conversation