Public speaking can be terrifying and can literally make your palms sweat out of fear and nervousness. However, did you know that public speaking makes a person confident and gives them a platform to share their ideas? It allows you to influence the audience with your thoughts and also strengthens your communication skills.

Read on to know the four most important elements that will improve your public speaking skills:


1. It’s Okay To Be Nervous, Just Keep Practicing

It’s absolutely okay to feel nervous and experience physiological reactions such as a pounding heart and shivering hands. Don’t let it be the result of your poor performance.

To ensure that you stand out among your peers, don’t just memorize your speech, you should be willing to change the words and improvise when you finally put your ideas out there.

How you can overcome this anxiety is by constantly practicing your speech. You can practice in front of a mirror, videotape yourself or even get a friend to critique your performance.

Over-confidence and/or memorizing the same words verbatim can be a barrier between you and your audience. The more you practice, the more familiar you’ll become with the topic of discussion. This will help improvise while presenting and result in an effective and positive public speaking experience.


2. Know Your Audience

Before you begin to craft your ideas, you should first find out whom the message is intended for and if your audience has enough knowledge of the topic you’re going to talk about.

Knowing your audience will help you carefully curate your words, information, and motivational statement.

Make sure that you deliver your speech holistically for your audience to learn something new and emphasize on obvious points.


3. Use Humour & Tell Stories Effectively

Always inject a funny anecdote or an actual incident that happened with you that connects to the presentation you’re giving. By doing this, you’re bound to grab your audience’s attention.

Remember, that irrespective of the topic, the audience generally enjoys a personal touch in a speech that makes it relatable, thus keeping them glued to your presentation.

Make your presentation more conversational than just a speech being delivered for the sake of it and you’ll see the crowd engaging and participating.

The best presentations don’t feel like presentations, they are simply stories told by people with interesting experiences.


4. Encourage Audience Participation

When presentations or speeches are being delivered, it is easy to find the audience getting bored and impatiently waiting to sprint out of the room.

You, on the other hand, have to ensure that your audience is intently listening to you not because they are physically present there but because your public speaking has stood out.

Depending on the topic you’re talking about, always find ways to engage your audience by creating a platform for them where they get to clear their doubts, make relevant points, and share their opinions. This will help in keeping them focused and you wouldn’t lose the attention of devoted listeners.


Before you even begin to give a presentation, ask yourself, what is that one thing you want your audience to take away from you? When you decide on that, it gets easier for you to talk about a topic or important aspects of it from an audience’s perspective.