What will your audience remember longer: your next speech or a great meal that they’ve just had? I hate to admit it, but I’m willing to bet that despite the importance of public speaking, the meal has a better chance to stay on their mind than our speeches. Why is that? Could it be that the meal did a better job of using spices to create a lasting memory?
The Reason That Spices Are So Important
The biggest problem with a boring speech isn’t that you are going to end up hurting anyone, rather it’s that you are going to bore your audience. When you are done speaking, a bored audience is going to get up and leave and they’re not going to remember anything that you said.
As a speaker this means that we need to find ways to make our next speech more memorable. In order to make this happen, we need to understand how our audiences take in information. The way that they do it is to use all five of their senses to detect what is going on all around them.
As speakers this means that we need to tune our next speech so that it activates all of our audience’s senses. The more senses that we can get them to use while we give our speech, then the better the chances that we’ll have of them remembering what we told them long after we’ve finished speaking.
Call it what you will, but I like to refer to the techniques that we use to reach our audience’s various senses “spices”. They are the little things that we add to our speech that will remove the bland and add some zing. Now the only question is how to go about adding these spices to our next speech.
4 Secrets To Using Spices In Your Next Speech
Even if you don’t consider yourself to be much of a cook, you can still add spices to your next speech. The trick is simply knowing what kind of spices are available to you in your “speech kitchen”.
The first spice that we all can use is the power of being descriptive. As you build your speech, take the time to carefully choose your words. Use words that your audience already knows and has powerful associations with to bring your audience into your speech.
Next, add a dash of the dynamic. It’s not just your words that you are going to have to use in order to appeal to all of your audience’s senses. Rather, your ability to add gestures and props to your speech is going to be what it will take to capture their attention.
Spices in your next speech are going to do you no good if you have just dumped them into your speech all in the same place. Just imagine how a meal would taste if you got a mouth full of spice all at once! Instead, take the time to add some spice to your speech throughout the speech. Don’t rush it – spread it out.
Finally, don’t over spice your speech. You’re going to look rather silly if your audience can only taste the spice in your next speech and they miss the main point of what you were trying to get across to them. Use your speech spice sparingly and only add it where it is going to help to make your message memorable.
What All Of This Means For You
A bland speech is very much like a bland meal – instantly forgettable. As speakers we need to find ways to add some “spice” to our next speech in order to make it both tasty while we are delivering it and memorable by our audience for how good it was. One of the benefits of public speaking is that adding some spice to our next speech is easy to do.
In order to make this happen, we need to take the time to add the right things to our speech. This means finding ways to appeal to all of our audience’s senses so that we’ll be able to form a lasting memory. We can do this by ensuring that our speech is descriptive and dynamic, that we are organized, and that we are careful to not over do the spices.
Moderation is the key to making a good meal and the same thing can be said when we are creating a speech. We need to do what a good cook does and be constantly sampling our own speech to make sure that it’s not too bland and not too spicy. Get your speech spices right and your audience is sure to want to come back for more.
– Dr. Jim Anderson
Blue Elephant Consulting –
Your Source For Real World Public Speaking Skills™
Question For You: Just how much “spice” do you think would be too much to add to a 30-minute speech?
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Note: What we talked about are advanced speaking skills. If you are just starting out I highly recommend joining Toastmasters in order to get the benefits of public speaking. Look for a Toastmasters club to join in your home town by visiting the web site www.Toastmasters.org. Toastmasters is dedicated to helping their members to understand the importance of public speaking by developing listening skills and getting presentation tips. Toastmasters is how I got started speaking and it can help you also!
What We’ll Be Talking About Next Time
It is never too early to start planning on what you’re going to be saying in public during the next holiday season. More often than not, there will be gatherings of friends, family, or perhaps coworkers. When a group of people get together, there is always a desire to wish each other good luck. The easiest way to go about doing is by offering a toast. Since we all realize the importance of public speaking, perhaps we should talk about how you should go about crafting the toast that you are going to be giving…