PREPARING THE SPEECH: Whether you have a clear idea of what you want to say or you have a blank page, we work together to develop a speech that connects with your audience. Although speeches are to be heard not read, they still need to be organized and logical. We start with a “hook” to grab the audience’s attention and end with a strong closing that stays with your listeners. Even a lighthearted, fun speech should be organized and logical with clear transitions. In addition, we examine the language and tone to see they are suitable for the occasion while making sure the speech is still in your voice and reflects the way you naturally speak. As we make adjustments, we check that your speech always fits the time allotted.
PRACTICING THE SPEECH: As soon as your speech is outlined, we start to practice. I give instant feedback and provide guidance to improve and correct any weak areas. Whether it is your diction, pacing, volume, vocal variety or suppressing any unconscious quirks, we work together to improve your performance. I make mid-course adjustments to shorten the learning curve and move you quickly to your desired goal. My approach to this part of the process is highly personalized; we only work on areas that need strengthening while highlighting the areas where you shine.
Next, we focus on the actual method of recalling the material. Whether you wish to commit the speech to memory, work from bullet points on note cards or from a longer version, I have all the tips to enable you to recall your speech as needed. In addition, I guide you through a set of visual symbols that serve as prompts so you know when to pause, when to use a certain hand gesture, etc. Depending on your needs, we practice working with or without a microphone.
Finally, we pull it all together at one (or more) rehearsals where we recreate as much as possible the elements of the actual event. These practice sessions include wearing the clothing and shoes (or a very close version) that you will wear on the day.
DELIVERING THE SPEECH: The non-verbal part of your speech is as important as the spoken word. During the practice sessions, we examine all the areas that take speeches from good to excellent. Eye contact, facial expressions, body language, hand gestures and posture are incorporated while ensuring you are still your authentic self. We discuss and develop a routine for you to follow on the day of the speech as well as what to do right before you walk up to the microphone. Techniques to calm nerves, as well as loosen tongues and jaws become part of the process.
I guarantee you end up with a speech that reflects your authentic self and personal style, one that you are confident and proud to present.