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Giving your speech 

two men preparing a speech

Do's and Don'ts

Every speech requires different delivery and every speaker has a different style but these tips are relevant to pretty much everyone. I hope you find them useful.


Talk slowly. If it takes 12 minutes, not nine, it doesn't matter at all.

Pause for effect. Your audience need time to digest the story before they get the punch line. So give them time to get it..

Emphasise key words. Imagine you're telling a story without a script. You'll say some words louder than others and change your inflection on others.

Practise. However well written the speech, you don't want to be 'reading' it. Know it well enough that it just becomes a safety net.

Gesticulate. Body language is vital. If you're addressing someone, look at them. Use your arms to emphasise a point.


Be put off by a heckle. You can pre-prepare a couple of responses to a noisy member of the crowd.

Give in to the shakes. Paste your speech onto card. Or rest it somewhere you can see it. Find out if there's a lectern. Holding a shaky piece of paper will put you off before you get going.

Get drunk beforehand. It may feel like the easy way to get through it, but it won't seem so sensible afterwards.

Just read it out. Great material is irrelevant if it's delivered badly. You'll be much more natural when you're not reading straight from the page.


Worried about giving a speech?

Relax!  Lawrence from Great Speechwriting can help you write a truly unique speech, whether it be for a wedding, after dinner or a corporate event.  He can also help you develop your speech-giving and presentation skills.






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