How to Give a Great Speech

The Ten Habits of Highly Effective Speakers

Successful speakers do not do all the right things all
the time. They often take risks and risk bombing. But
all top speakers take daily action, to move towards
their goals with many adjustments. Here are ten ways
to be a highly effective speaker.

1. Have a passion for your subject(s). If you don’t
care about your topic, who will? Make a list of five
topics you love. Choose two and be willing to develop
a program you are willing to stay with for at least two

2. Be persistent in your quest to be a speaker of
excellence. You must be perceived as an expert with
expertise. Demonstrate this through your life experiences,
research and the way you customize your material for each
audience. You are only as good as your last speech!

3. Have the patience to succeed. Is persistence your
middle name? Don’t expect to be a success over night.
Get support, mentors, a coach to help you master your
presentation(s). One speaker said, This is a hard business
to make an easy living.

4. Speak from your heart. Be authentic. Be vulnerable.
Share your mishaps and idiosyncrasies. You won’t be
perceived as real until you do this. When you are
truthful, your audiences will trust what you are saying.
Let your message provide hope for your audience.

5. Connect quickly with your audience. You only have 30
seconds to make your connection. So pay attention to your
opening remarks. Don’t use jokes they may offend people
in your audience. Do use short quotations, a funny story
that is relevant to your message, a question or two to get
their attention quickly.

6. Prepare 24/7. You don’t write speeches, you find them
everywhere in hotels, from family experiences, in the
supermarkets and restaurants. Retrieve them and retell
them. Don’t lose out on great material because you didn’t
have your note pad near you. Why not invest in a mini-tape
recorder and record ideas as they occur throughout your

7. Speak to the ways people learn; auditory, visual and
kinesthetic. Know your audience so that you can offer the
right mix. Research suggests 40% are visual, 40% are
kinesthetic, and only 20% are auditory. If you don’t use
props or visuals, you will not reach 80% of your audience.
Be inclusive and find ways/tools that will speak to 100% of
the people in your audience.

8. Support your main points with stories most people
delineate their thoughts visually. People learn best from
your personal stories. They will also do a better job in
retaining your message if you tell them a story. Remember
when you were a kid. . .you said to your parents, tell me
a story. When an adult hears your story, they are only a
step away from their own story. Become a good story teller
and watch your referrals and repeat business increase.

9. Make it fun learning is directly proportional to the
amount of fun your audience is having laughter is like
internal jogging. Inject some humor along the way. The
audience wants to lighten up even with serious matters.
Reminder—mature adults do not take themselves too

10. Have a reverence for the work you do. It is a privilege
to be on the platform. And with this comes an awesome
responsibility to your audience. Speaking is an art and a
skill. Tap in to your creativity, your wholesomeness, your
playfulness. Live/speak from the inside out.

Sandra Schrift 13 year speaker bureau owner and now coach speakers to get clients and paid speaking engagements. I also work with business professionals and organizations who want to deliver masterful presentations. To find out HOW TO MAKE IT AS A PROFESSIONAL SPEAKER, go to Join my free bi-weekly Monday Morning Mindfulness ezine