March 30, 2009

What is the best way to ...



...write a speech?
...practice a speech?
...use notes?
...get the audience's attention?

I get these kinds of questions on a regular basis. It reminds me of all the crazy diets people go on in order to lose weight fast and with no effort. What's the "best" way to lose ten pounds in a week?

No one can tell you what's best for you. There are a lot of methods, techniques and strategies out there, used by speakers from the beginning of time. I've given many suggestions on this blog, and I'm sure I've suggested the best way to do something plenty of times.

But you have to figure out for yourself, through trial and error, what's truly best for you and your audiences.

Copying what others have done, without any analysis or evaluation, may not get you the results you're looking for. Assuming that one way is "best" without trying another way is limiting, and doesn't allow you to fully develop your own style as a speaker. Just because Zig Ziglar or Tony Robbins uses certain techniques, it doesn't mean those techniques will work for you.

So take the suggestions from the experts and try them to see what works best for you, your personality, your presentation style, and your particular audiences. Don't take my word for it that one method is best. Do your own evaluation and find out for yourself.

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4 comments. Please add yours! :

Nick R Thomas said...

Quite right, Lisa - better to be 'influenced by' than a tribute act!

Lisa Braithwaite said...

Great way to put it, Nick!

Anonymous said...

I fully agree...
I have met speakers who are trying to "follow the rules" of good speakers. It is painful to witness. Most often, they are so focused on the style of the speech, that they forget about the purpose of the speech. I would much rather listen to someone who is passionate and dedicated to the subject matter than to a speaker who is focused on finding the "best way".

Lisa Braithwaite said...

Exactly, Mr./Ms. Anonymous! I wrote a blog post a while back that fits with your comment. Same post is the featured article in my newsletter this month: http://tinyurl.com/caqypk.

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