Ways to speak confidently in front of a group
Are you the person who isn’t comfortable with talking in front of people, even just in a small group?
Well, you are not alone! There are a lot of people out there who are going through this experience. It’s an uncomfortable feeling that can make our day a little awful. But, the good news is that you can do something about this! Being calm isn’t that easy especially when you are about to deliver a speech, report, research, final paper, lesson, etc. in front of people particularly if you aren’t used to it. The anxiety that a person feels is also caused by unrealistic expectations, inferiority, and unpreparedness.
Unrealistic expectations, such as expecting that your audience will be going to understand your lecture easily or they will agree with you every time you talk or say something will cause problems concerning the activity that you are about to do. Inferiority is a state wherein a person thinks that he/she is lower than those in front of him/her, this causes low self-esteem and will bring about the inability to deliver words effectively. Unpreparedness is a common cause of being uncomfortable speaking in front of a group. That’s why we have to be ready beforehand so that we can avoid possible circumstances that we don’t even want to happen.
Below are the steps to guide you to conquer this situation:
1. You have to assess your audience
- You can do this by knowing their educational background. Who is my audience? What is the appropriate topic that I can share with them? How will I deliver my topic? This will determine what content you can add up or deliver that will resonates with them.
- Find out how knowledgeable they are about the lecture you are about to discuss. Your topic and the way you lecture it should be appropriate to your designated audience. Do I need to discuss this part of the topic further? Or will I jump up to the next?
- Tell them the ways how the lecture will help them. Your audience wants to get something while spending their time listening to you. They might be those busy people who chose to listen and attend your presentation. So, don’t waste their time!
- Give them reasons why it’s important to listen/pay attention to your lecture.
- Give them incentives for attending your lecture, it could be giving away certificates of participation, snacks, or tokens.
- Connect your topics to the real things that are happening around us to keep them interested. They will more likely to engage if they know that they can relate to your topic.
2. Think of something that can grab their attention.
- To be a great speaker, you have to engage or connect with your audience at the very start. You can do this by introducing yourself first, giving gratitude for their presence, and communicating to them through eye level. You can ask a question, mention a familiar event that is happening around us, giving a meaningful quote that is relatable to the presentation and that can motivate them to listen.
- Find unique ways of keeping your presentation alive. No one would like to listen to a dull presentation that will only make them feel sleepy and unconnected.
3. Important notes should be taken down.
- Write the important things to remember and detail them by using a good research explanation.
- Use bullet points or numbers to guide you while speaking.
- Make an effort to make your audience remember you.
- Don’t stare too long at your PowerPoint or visual aids, interact with your audience.
4. Use valuable resources.
- Make sure that the materials you will be using are functioning well before the presentation to avoid further problems. And you can also prepare a backup if necessary.
5. Use a desirable structure.
- Write, plan and practice your lecture in a notebook or paper so that you can be able to see what is lacking.
- There should be a beginning or introduction. Just like a written article, an introduction is a great way to give an overview of the content that you are about to discuss.
- There should be a middle part or the body, it should be separated into small sections so that your audience can understand it easily. And to avoid information overload that could make it hard for them to grasp what you are saying. Keep it engaging, you can ask questions, and if they can’t answer back then answer them yourself. If they answer, you have to compliment them even though it’s not the perfect answer.
- Moreover, there should be a final part that includes your conclusion of the overall lecture you’ve presented.
6. Remain calm in every stage of your presentation.
- Be calm and control your anxiety, because your body language will greatly affect your speaking.
- Be confident all the way and smile to relax your facial muscles.
Speaking in front of other people is a challenge, especially for those who have a shy type or an introverted personality. But it’s also a good challenge to do it and be able to cope with it. Hopefully, the above reminders and tips could help you go further.
Thank you so much for reading this post! If this sounds helpful to you, it could as well be helpful to other people. Share this post so that it can reach them as well! If you have any comments or something to share regarding this topic, don’t hesitate to leave them in the comments section.