Preparation in public speaking is key to a successful speech. It helps build self -confidence.
However, skimpy, half-baked preparation causes lack of self-confidence and encourages forgetting. Adequate preparation will also prevent rambling from the subject or bringing in unimportant, trivial material.
Talking well without notes is not a lazy method of delivery. It does require some more work and preparation than the other methods, but surely the, rewards are greater. When a person speaks effectively without notes he becomes what Quintilian would have called, “A gentleman conversing.”
A speech should be talked to an audience much like you would tell an interesting story to a neighbor across the back yard fence. Suppose the neighbor left his hearing aid in the house. Then you will talk about twice as loudly as you would in ordinary conversation. This same principle applies to public speaking. It is “enlarged” conversation.
The speaker must speak up and out so that the listener farthest away can hear without having to make an effort to do so. Listeners who cannot hear a speaker distinctly will simply “drop out of the race.” A speaker cannot justly expect to hold them under such conditions. This is a simple principle, yet how often it is violated!
On the other hand,’ a speaker who shouts constantly or vocally blasts his audience will probably not be persuasive. Such talking is usually not conversational. It produces a monotony of force which is just as distracting and disgusting as speaking that cannot be heard. Speaking force should be natural, in keeping with the situation and expressed feeling.
So if you take the time to prepare your public speaking and presentation occasions will go much better than if you leave it. It is important to see each time you talk as a learning experience and a time to learn what works and what doesn’t. It is like any skill that is worth learning – it doesn’t happen all at once and it is through doing that it is learnt.