Introduction to Public Speaking

Being a great public speaker is much like being a great salesman. Great salespeople are able to effectively communicate their value to a prospect. They lay out the benefits that the prospect will receive by doing business with them, and they do this in a way in which the prospect can relate to. If you are able to do something similar, then you’ll be just as successful in your public speaking endeavors.


With an introduction, you can let people know who you are before you start speaking. An introduction is a great way to make an impressive first impression.

An introduction should include your name and some idea about what you do for work or school. You could also throw in some information about hobbies if it’s relevant to the event. Your goal is to provide the audience with a short glimpse of your life that will give them context for what they’re going to hear from you next.

People like stories and they like to know that they aren’t alone in their challenges and triumphs. If there is something funny or entertaining that happened as part of your journey, it’s totally fine to include it as long as it won’t embarrass anyone else — or yourself! You don’t want audience members laughing at you instead of with you – unless, of course, this was the plan all along…

Set goals

Before you start working towards achieving anything, it’s important to define your goals. Recently I’ve been working with a client on his public speaking skills. The first thing we did was set some goals.

When we sat down together to get clear on what he hoped to improve, we started by talking about where he wanted to be in three months and then six months. His initial answers were vague, so I asked him to come up with something more tangible. We discussed how much time he would have available each week for practice and where he would like to see himself when the training is completed.

Once we had established his goals (which were both ambitious and realistic), the next step was defining benchmarks – small successes that can be measured along the way as he improves his public speaking skills.

Plan the content

The most important factor in ensuring that you have an effective presentation is to plan what you are going to say. The time invested in planning will be well worth it. One of the best ways to plan your presentation is to prepare an outline. Some examples of outlines are presented below, as well as a list of other points for consideration when planning your content.

  • Make it relevant to your audience: ensure that there is a connection between the information being presented and the interests and needs of your audience; make sure they can see how what you are saying relates specifically to them and their needs
  • Include your key messages: each part of the speech should contribute directly or indirectly to one or more key messages that link back to how your topic relates specifically to the interests and needs of your audience
  • Research the topic: take time finding out about all aspects of the topic so that you know exactly what you want (and need) to say about it; use reliable sources, such as books, articles from academic journals, newspapers and magazines (try not to use Wikipedia unless there is no better source available)

Gather materials

Your first step is to prepare your materials. If you will be using a presentation, make sure you have it prepared and ready to go. Save it in multiple places such as on a USB drive and on the cloud (e.g., Google Drive). Make sure the file format is correct for the equipment that will be available to you. If using PowerPoint, make sure to bring along any fonts or graphics used in your slides so they won’t get distorted when displayed on another computer. Have a backup plan in case your primary presentation goes missing or fails for some reason—such as having printed copies of everything or knowing which slides would be most important if you had to skip sections.

Learn more about Public Speaking Here

Practice the presentation

  • Practice in a mirror. This one is the most obvious, but it’s also the most important. Memorize your speech by practicing at least three times in front of a mirror. Doing this will help you get comfortable with your material and feel more confident about what you’re going to say.
  • Practice in front of a live audience. If you can, perform your presentation for someone else—a friend, family member or coworker—and ask them for feedback on what you could improve upon. This will serve as great practice for when you have to give the real thing.
  • Practice in front of a video camera. Before giving your speech, record yourself and watch it back to see if there are any areas where you could improve or change things up. Recording yourself gives you an opportunity to evaluate how comfortable and natural you look while speaking, so that when it’s time to present, everything will come naturally without any nerves getting in the way of your performance!

Organize the presentation

Organizing the presentation is perhaps the most important aspect of public speaking. A well-planned and organized presentation is easier to understand, more engaging, and will help you avoid mistakes. Here are a few ways in which you can organize the speech better:

  • Make an outline
  • Plan the introduction
  • Plan the conclusion
  • Logically structure your content

Once you have planned everything, it’s time to work on what you will be saying. Before preparing your speech, make sure that your material is complete and correct so that there is no last-minute scrambling for information or data. Once you have all your materials ready, it’s time to rehearse. Practicing beforehand helps develop confidence in oneself and makes delivery easier on stage. This section will not only give a detailed overview of organizing a presentation but also provide tips on how to make sure that your material is ready and how rehearsing can help build confidence.

Deliver your presentation

“Public speaking can be really stressful,” I said.

“It can,” said Charlie, who was standing beside me. “But it doesn’t have to be.”

He went on to tell of an idea he had for a presentation about traveling on points and miles.

“It’s about this guy, his credit score, and how he lives in Dawson City, Yukon,” Charlie said. “He’s just like you.”

I thought about it—about how I didn’t know anyone in the city but my boyfriend, who was tall and handsome and had his own place there. How I was lucky because he was twenty-one years old now and could buy alcohol legally. How we’d get married if that ever happened, which it never would because why would you want to get married to someone? Why not just live together? Why not enjoy life as long as you can?

Public speaking doesn’t have to be difficult.

Public speaking is an integral part of life. Whether you’re presenting to a class, running a meeting, or giving a toast, it’s important to be able to speak effectively and confidently in front of others. The more often you practice public speaking, the more natural it will feel. In this course, we’ll teach you how to do just that.

Now that you’ve learned about the benefits of public speaking and know who this course is for, let’s take a look at our syllabus for what’s ahead.


The major purpose of this pamphlet is to introduce the public speaker. Public speaking is not just speech giving or performance activity. It involves an effective gathering of knowledge or learning, organized and presented together via oral performance to another person. Therefore, public speaking can be a challenging task as well. One should have the right strategies to do it successfully but it would involve some skills on the part of the public speaker. This activity involves one’s inner self and outer self in planning his/her presentation or speech together with combining both knowledge and communication power together. These are what one should consider before on how to have a successful speech or presentation.

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