No one should underestimate the power of a great speech. A competent speaker has this immense capability to influence people and inspire action. When you look at how speakers keep their audience in awe and interested, you might realize that a great deal of an effective speech has something to do with preparation and practice.
But what happens in situations when you are asked to deliver a speech right on the spot? Impromptu speaking can surely scare the wits out of anyone because it opens up visions of an extremely embarrassing scenario. A picture of a speaker sweating and struggling to utter a sensible statement before a disappointed audience. Most likely, no one would like to experience that unfortunate occurrence so it is safe to say that mastering the art of impromptu speaking should be a goal for everyone. The following pointers may just be the guide you need to be a pro in giving improvised speeches.
Expect & Assume
Your ability to think ahead will be highly beneficial to gain success in impromptu speaking. Some events have similar and predictable program flow so it would not hurt to anticipate a scene where a host might just randomly ask you to share some thought or ideas. Presume the questions that may be asked and prepare insights so you would be ready to give a piece of your mind if needed.
Make Every Second Count
Once you are requested to give an impromptu speech, the worst thing that you can do is panic. Remember that you still have a brief time to breathe and gather your thoughts together. So instead of instantly grabbing the microphone to mumble incoherent statements, make the most of the few seconds or few minutes, you have to think about a possible response. Strategies such as walking slowly towards the stage or sharing interesting facts about yourself are simple ways to gain extra time as you get yourself ready.
Organize Your Thoughts With a Tactic
Templates are valuable because it provides a guided framework for a specific task. Likewise, the use of templates is vital in impromptu speaking. When presented with a topic to discuss, you can start by quickly outlining the flow of your speech with a guided pattern. One sample template you can follow would start by introducing the issue, followed with a presentation of its good and bad side, and then sum up your points with a conclusion.
Keep it Brief But Complete
The challenge of impromptu speaking does not stop with an impressive introduction. Your speech should have compelling content and conclusion as well. Do not forget that since you are unprepared, there is a tendency for your topic to branch out to several subtopics which may make it harder to give your talk a smooth ending. Employing the use of a template as stated above will help keep your speech straight and focused on a specific area.
Engage the Audience
When you are unfamiliar or clueless about the topic, the most important information or the most unique insight you can get may come from none other than your audience. So do not hesitate to throw them questions or seek their opinions. Doing this will help you tackle a difficult topic in a breeze and at the same time will keep your audience awake and interested.
It is always a pleasure to listen to a great host and we often marvel at the speaker’s confidence, wit, and charm. However, the true test of any great speaker lies on impromptu speaking. So every small conscious step you do to be better in impromptu speaking is a giant leap towards being an effective speaker.