Part 3: Content of Your Speech
What is not stressed enough about public speaking is that there is just as much effort required in preparing for a speech than delivering it. Your content and the elements of the written script/speech is equally significant to standing in front of your audience and verbally speaking. This post will discuss tips in creating your content, from the beginning to preparation. A post soon will discuss the actual delivery of a speech.
Within high school, my speeches were not good and I never made strong efforts within those four years to improve it. However, in my freshmen year at the University at Buffalo, I realized the importance of public speakng. With that, I luckily discovered the importance of perfecting my content prior to delivering my speech, which signifcantly helped me to improve this crucial soft skill. I’ll get more into my freshman year at a later point, but for now, let’s focus on your content.
Of course, just like any other written work, you want to brainstorm, plan, execute, edit, revise, and proofread so we will not go into detail on that. But instead, focus on what you know. When you brainstorm, choose a subject for whatever interests you. If you are interested in your topic, that will be relayed to your audience. Choose one that also is not too specific; keep in mind that you want to research your topic so finding a topic that has little research available. On that note, ensure that your topic is not too broad as well. For example, in my freshmen year, my first writing assignment was simply a research paper. After brainstorming, the most intriguing topic was the rising prices of the Epi-Pen in the medical industry. However, after doing research, there surprisingly wasn’t much research on the topic, so instead, I expanded the scope to the rising prices of the entire medical industry. In doing so, I had substantial research and could provide a lot of content in my paper.
With that, explore not just many sources, but explore a wide rang of sources. Do not just focus on one opinion but rather various opinions, even if you disagree with them. Broaden your scope on your assignment and include various opinions in your research. Jeremy Donovan states in his book, Speaker, Leader, Champion, “Be an unbiased anthropologist. There is a dizzying array of biases that cause people to make errors in decision making”. Although there are biases in others research and works, do not fall into one of these biases but instead, evaluate each one and bring them to consideration when formulating your speech.
With this research, you can begin planning out your work and putting your research and thoughts down on paper, or a computer for this instance. Begin with an introduction and end with a conclusion. Bring interest to the writing, you want to interest your readers so avoid repition. Basic writing strategies will take your script for your speech a long way. Carefully consider while revising it that if your parent, professor, or friend were in the audience, they would find interest in it too. When you think you mastered the content in your script, you are ready to begin preparing your speech.