At UKSV, we understand that public speaking does not come naturally to everyone and speaking at conferences can be a daunting task. We have pulled together our top tips to help you with your upcoming conference to ensure that the speech you deliver is engaging and memorable, while making it a relaxing experience for you.

Concepts over Content:

Speeches can be long and difficult to remember, so the number one rule when learning them is to memorise concepts rather than content. Trying to remember your speech word by word will be challenging for a start, but it could also result in being thrown-off if you forget just one word. Leaving a bit of flexibility in your speech will mean you’ll come across more relaxed and naturally than if you were to be focusing on reciting the entire thing from memory.

Slow and Steady wins the race:

Don’t rush! People are at this conference to hear you! Good communication is the key to being good speaker – without communicating clearly you can’t get your message across.

Often the result of nerves, a common mistake made by people making a speech is rushing to get their words out so fast that a lot of it is lost by the audience. Take your time. Pauses can be effective at conferences; it gives audiences a chance to catch up and reflect on what you have just said.

Structuring your speech:

As a speaker, your aim is to tell a story and impart a message to the audience. At UKSV, we suggest establishing exactly what you want to get across and assessing what the audience wants and needs to hear. Make sure you structure your speech with a beginning, middle and an end; start by introducing yourself and the topic, then lead onto the main chunk (the whole point of your speech!) before finishing it off with a closing summary, perhaps even pointing to future implications on the topic.

Body language

You’ve heard it all before; the importance of correct body language and eye contact when speaking – conference speaking is no different. Confident body language relays to the audience that you yourself are confident in what you are saying. Standing straight with your shoulders back and using (but not overdoing) hand gestures to enhance your message can engage the audience and make you appear more confident as a speaker. When speaking in front of a large audience, try not to fixate on one area of the room, but look around and make eye contact with various audience members for a few seconds at a time. This will make them feel more valued by you and will make you come across as more trustworthy.

At UKSV, we offer public speaking training with a difference. If you think you or your team could benefit from brushing up on your public speaking skills, feel free to contact us to arrange a meeting.

Contact us on: 01425 480444 or info@uksv.co.uk

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