1 – Expect nervousness every time, but don’t expect disaster. Expect success.
2 – Stick to what you know well, so you can ‘talk’ about it at length, with ease.
3 – Ask lots of questions of the event organizer ahead of time, to find out the size of the room, equipment, expected number of attendees, etc. Visit if possible.
4 – Talk to people in the audience before you speak. If you have a chance to meet some of them before the speaking date, or at least before you talk try to mingle a bit and find out what they expect. It is good to have an ally in the audience, and it is great for you to know what they expect to hear.
5 – Reduce ‘separation anxiety’ by reframing it as an ‘informative conversation’
within a group. Talk to them, not at them.
6 – Remind yourself during to slow down, pause, breathe, relax and smile.
7 – Prepare point-form notes or cards and practice a lot with family, friends, etc.
8 – Research as much as you can ahead of time, so you can be an up to date expert on the subject of what you are talking about.
9 – Always relate directly to your audience. Making your speech relevant to your audience is key to their enjoyment and interest.
10 – What is the overall focus? Is it to inform, to entertain, to motivate, to shock your audience? Your whole speech needs to be centred around this vision.