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Lesson 1 - The Basics of Public Speaking
Surveys show that more people are afraid of speaking in public than of dying! This is not only amazing, it is also quite a problem because
being able to speak well in public is an important skill in many careers. Being able to speak well is also valuable in getting
a good job in the first place. Learn public speaking skill from these articles and you will
not only have more success on the job. Being able to get up in front of an audience and give a speech will greatly increase your confidence.
The writer of these articles is a professional teacher with 20 years experience helping people speak more effectively. In addition to the articles, you can watch carefully chosen speeches, with
comments added, that will show you how to be a great speaker. Before getting
into details, here are five tips to help you get going:
1. Don't try to memorize a speech. Instead, use the "key points" approach, described in detail in Lesson 2.
These five tips will get you started as a successful public speaker. You already have an advantage over other speakers. Now,
let's learn how to really do a great job by moving on to Lesson 2 - Prepare Your Speech.
2. Start strong with an interesting opening. It doesn't have to be brilliant, but it has to get the audience focused
on your topic. Various ways to do this will be explained in Lesson 5.
3. Don't speak too fast! This is a very common problem as nervous speakers try to finish as quickly as possible. Instead,
take your time, and your audience will listen more attentively.
4. Be careful when using visual aids, including (especially!) Power Point. They can be both distracting and confusing
unless they are used appropriately. (See Lessons 11 and 14 for more on this topic.)
5. Close your speech strongly with a "call to action".