Toastmasters Advice

http://www.toastmasters.org/tips.asp

Toastmasters is an organization that helps people with public speaking – groups typically meet weekly and work on communication and leadership skills. I thought it would be interesting (and beneficial) to read their tips on public speaking and see how it compares to things we have learned in this class. I found that all of the tips seem to be very helpful, and as people’s speeches have improved throughout the semester, I believe it is because they followed a lot of the Toastmasters advice without even knowing it.

For example, the first tip is to “Know your material.” Along with this is choosing a topic that you care about, and I feel that after watching the speeches throughout the year, the best ones were on topics that the speaker clearly felt passionate about. People seem more prepared and relaxed when they are using a topic that they are interested in. The next tip – and this goes along with knowing your material – is to practice. I feel that it goes without saying, but I found in my own speeches that the more I practiced, the better I felt giving the speech. It is clear when someone is prepared and when they are not, and it is the easiest thing to do to improve a speech.

Some of the other tips were not things that we discussed in class, but I feel that they would be beneficial to use. The tip to “visualize yourself giving the speech” is a good way to practice – it can give confidence, and is another way to prepare. Also, “realize that people want you to succeed” is another good tip, particularly in this class – everyone in the class wants to see people give good speeches, so that can help take off some of the pressure when you realize that everyone wants you to do your best. Also, “concentrate on the audience, not the medium” is another great tip to use. Instead of focusing on yourself, focus on what you are trying to tell the audience – if you chose a topic you care about, you should want to portray the message!

All in all, I think that Toastmasters gave some great advice. Some of it we have discussed, some of it we have learned implicitly, and some of the tips are new but would certainly be helpful to give great speeches – both for the remainder of the class and in the future!

-Amanda Daniels

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5 comments so far

  1. pipkin6320 on

    I really like all the tips that the Toastmaster gave. All of them would really help you succeed in one’s next public address. One of the tips that really stuck out to me is ‘to know the room’ and to ‘know the audience’. As you said we all have improved throughout the semester on delivering speeches and learned from our mistakes. But, the one thing that really stood out to me is how people increasingly seemed to get more comfortable giving speeches as the year went on. With this in thought, when giving your next speech try to be in the room for awhile, may be practice your speech in that room. Also, before your next speech, if possible, try to consume yourself in the presence of the audience so that you can tell how they feel about certain subject, know their personalities etc.

  2. pipkin6320 on

    I really like all the tips that the Toastmaster gave. All of them would really help you succeed in one’s next public address. One of the tips that really stuck out to me is ‘to know the room’ and to ‘know the audience’. As you said we all have improved throughout the semester on delivering speeches and learned from our mistakes. But, the one thing that really stood out to me is how people increasingly seemed to get more comfortable giving speeches as the year went on. With this in thought, when giving your next speech try to be in the room for awhile, may be practice your speech in that room. Also, before your next speech, if possible, try to consume yourself in the presence of the audience so that you can tell how they feel about certain subject, know their personalities etc. Lauren Pipkin

  3. jdavis0136 on

    I really like this site. Toastmaster seems like it could really be beneficial when preparing for a speech. It is a very interesting site. It makes me wonder about the public and how many of them have taken a speech class or have and knowledge of the right and wrong ways surrounding public speaking. I have witnessed many speeches that simply fail on levels. However, I have also seen amazing speeches. The one factor I believe plays the biggest role in a successful speech is practice. That is why I like Toastmaster. I think this site could play a large role in helping people improve the public speaking skills.

  4. cihuber on

    As Amanda said, Toastmasters, as an organization, seems to be the post-grad public address class. Their tips are useful for all kinds of speaking engagements. I think the name itself, Toastmasters, brings to light a new and important type of public address: toast making. In our adults lives, toast-making is a form of public address which we will be sure to engage in. Toast-making requires the same skills used throughout our class. However, as in any new situation, the constraints of toast-making are a bit different: time, location, topic.

  5. cihuber on

    As Amanda said, Toastmasters, as an organization, seems to be the post-grad public address class. Their tips are useful for all kinds of speaking engagements. I think the name itself, Toastmasters, brings to light a new and important type of public address: toast making. In our adults lives, toast-making is a form of public address which we will be sure to engage in. Toast-making requires the same skills used throughout our class. However, as in any new situation, the constraints of toast-making are a bit different: time, location, topic.

    Carly Huber


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