5 Steps to Proficient Public Speaking and Communication

Most of us learn how to communicate by observing others. Our personality also affects how we communicate and conduct ourselves. A trained communicator in public speaking, however, uses techniques and knowledge in communication to prepare, present and adapt a conversation or a speech. A well-prepared presentation/conversation guarantees that the audience is engaged because it is designed to have that effect.

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1.      Creating a Plan

The first step to speaking right is to plan for it. If you need to speak on the evolving technologies, you need to create an outline, test whether the content will be engaging enough, and then fill it with relevant and interesting information. Ideally, the content must be a combination of information and ideas. It will then be novel and relevant, and will interest the listener.

2.       Preparing for Presentation/Conversation

After knowing what you want to communicate, you need to prepare to communicate it with confidence. Whether the receiver of the message is your boss, a group of team members or a hall full of people, how you deliver the message determines its outcome. Preparing mentally for the communication and using relaxation techniques to keep yourself calm helps to retain clarity in thoughts and naturalness in behavior. As the first few minutes or the wait before a presentation/conversation is the most difficult, it is the best time to use physical relaxation techniques to keep off nervousness.

3.        Active Listening

Listening actively to what the listeners say and establishing their needs from their communication is essential for public speakers that allow audience participation. It is important to listen attentively and respond appropriately to others. Listening to a person intently suggests that you respect their willingness to give you their time. Active listening and appreciative inquiry helps develop interesting and healthy communications.

4.      Nonverbal Communication

In a conversation or a speech, non-verbal communication matters as much as verbal communication. Even if it is your words that get the response at the moment, it is also the non-verbal communication that will affect the impression you created on the other person in the long run. Your body language must match your words. If you are listening actively, but your body is turned away from the speaker, the subtle message you give is that you do not want to talk to the other person.

5.      Developing Positivity

It is essential to create an atmosphere where there can be an honest interaction. The other person must not feel intimidated by the words, how they are said or the mannerism of the speaker. You may use both verbal and non-verbal communication to help the other person be at ease. In a one-to-one conversation or a presentation, it is essential for the listener(s) to feel the connection with the speaker. Being human helps to make that connection.

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