A speech is to be heard rather than read. In writing a speech you need to keep this in mind. Write using vivid, concrete words to create a clear, vibrant picture for everyone listening. It must also use sentence structure designed for listening, don’t let your words sink into a monotone pattern which your audience will fall asleep to. This is why a speech must be read aloud in order to truly be proofread. Read it out loud to yourself, if possible record yourself and play it back.
Keep the speech sounding like a real person. It’s not like writing a technical guide, a real person is going to be speaking to other real people. Use words and language which are understood, in common use. Consider also, any words which can be confused with other words, especially words which sound very alike.
Give your main point in the beginning of the speech and state it again, in different words at the end. These are the times when people are listening at their best.
While giving your speech:
- Speak loudly and clearly
- Take your time, don’t rush your words.
- Use your hands, a little body language gives emphasis to your points and keeps the audience engaged.
- Look at your audience as you speak to them. Don’t look down at the floor or up at something on the wall, ignoring the very people you want to be listening to you.
- Mind your posture. Keep your feet on the floor, don’t slouch or teeter.
- Show interest and enthusiasm from the start to the finish of your talk.
- Smile once in awhile. Even at a funeral it is acceptable to smile in greeting.