Crystal, Clear and Consise!!!!!

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Be Crystal Clear and Concise

The key to giving a good speech or presentation is the same as good writing: to be clear and concise.  I know of no one who has ever been criticized for being understandable and succinct; they provide a complete message with no extraneous information.

A standout example is Abraham Lincoln’s “Gettysburg Address.”  Few of us will ever reach that type of eloquence; however, we should never stop striving for that level of excellence.

Choose your words carefully.  Make the effort to have each word where it will have the greatest effect on the listener.  In addition, do not disregard the power of intonation.  The advantage the spoken word has over the written word is the effect of expressing the intended meaning of the words being spoken.  The emphasis on the right word at the right time can save you many words of explanation of what you really meant to say.

Having an in depth vocabulary is of great help in speaking; however, the true orator speaks in a clear and easy to understand words.  In addition, many words have multiple  definitions.  To assure understanding, it is the speaker’s responsibility to know the meaning of the words they want to convey and place them in the right context.

Poor word selection combined with inadequate intonation and context can turn a great message into mediocrity or worse.  Well selected words, intonation and context can elevate a mediocre message to stand out and be heard, understood and appreciated by the listener.

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Start With Your Close: So You Know Where to Start

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There is a wonderful saying ‘Begin with the end in mind.’  When starting to compose your speech, it is best to start with the close.

The close is the end of the journey.  If you do not have a specific destination, you can wind up anywhere and will not only lose yourself. you audience will wind up who know where.  With the destination in mind you can now build an effective opening that sets the tempo and path to the final destination.

Whether it is a strong moral, call to action or critical learning point, the close is the message in a nutshell.  Everything else is just supporting information to support the message.

Rehearse and Be Excellent

Reheasal
The difference between an amateur and a professional is simple.  An amateur does it when they feel like it, a professional does it when they don’t. 
 
The difference between a good versus an excellent presentation is the amount of rehearsal given to refining and honing the small subtleties that make a significant difference in creating clarity of message.

Whether in front of a mirror or videoing your practice session you will hear and see where subtleties can make a significant difference in how your message is being communicated.  A word here, a pause there, a slight gesture delivered, even a facial expression can add or distract from your message.  Going live rather than rehearsing is always risky. 

Make the time and reap the rewards of adding rehearsal to your speech repertoire.