Speech Preparation: Eight Steps

Speech preparation in eight easy steps, from finding the topic to presenting the speech.

I don't know what's worse, preparing the speech or giving it. But what I do know is that behind every great speech, is a great writer. The following steps will guide you to preparing and writing your own "great" speech.

1. Select a Topic - come up with several topics and choose the best one

2. Determine the Specific Purpose and Write a Thesis Statement - What is your purpose? Is it to inform, describe, demonstrate, show, explain, give insight, educate, ease pain, or support a cause? Is it to persuade, convince, prove, petition, change, stress, or motivate? Or is it to merely entertain and make someone laugh? Do you have a power statement?

3. Analyze the Audience and the Occasion -

a. Audience: What do they know about the topic? What interest do they have in the topic? What is their attitude towards your chosen topic?

b. Occasion - What is the reason for the deliverance of the speech?

4. Find the Material to be spoken - Is it something you already know about? Is it something that you have to research? Do you need to interview anyone?

5. Organize the Speech -

a. Attention - you need to find an attention grabber

b. Goodwill - you want to leave the audience with a feeling of benevolence

c. Motivation - motivate to action

6. Word the Speech - Prepare an outline and then fill in the outline. Try to follow one train of thought.

7. Practice the Delivery - Try to have the speech memorized in your head, but do not speak as though it were memorized. You want to be able to sound as though you are having a conversation with the audience.

8. Deliver the Speech - If you find that talking in front of people without props causes you to hyperventilate, consider preparing props that reflect your speech.

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