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Public Speaking Course:

On Stage Tips

You will practice during your public speaking course how to say one thing to your audience while juggling numerous other thoughts at the same time. You always need to be aware of  how you are delivering your material. You have to connect with your audience to convey the message, and paint the picture in their minds with your words or even just your actions, with broad brush strokes, or with fine highlights, and subtle motions, to touch their heart, their mind, and their emotions.

Here are some tips from my public speaking course for when your on stage.

-- The larger the crowd, the larger and slower the gestures should be.

-- If you have a small crowd, or if you are videoconferencing, or on television, use smaller gestures.

-- Work to eliminate distracting or nervous gestures, but do not kill yourself to add new ones. They will take care of themselves and most of the time they look affected.

-- Hold your hands behind your back during question-and-answer sessions (don't overdo it).

-- Let your words trigger your actions. If you are counting, hold out your fingers.

-- Avoid excessive clenched fists, pointing, hands in pockets, or hands on hips,

-- Avoid the infamous fig leaf position where your hands are crossed in front of your groin.

-- Hold your hands open and wide apart to show sincerity and honesty.

-- If you say no, side to side shake your head no. Or if yes, then nod your head up and down.

I know of a speaker who once sat behind a controversial presidential nominee for the cabinet during a Senate confirmation hearing. He was dressed as a Founding Father with a tri-corn hat. He smiled and shook his head "Yes" when a good question was asked by a Senator, but frowned and shook his head "No" when a Senator asked a bad question.

He sat in view of all the Senators and  television cameras intentionally where hundreds of thousands, or even millions were watching in the audience. The "Founding Father" never uttered a sound, but he "spoke" volumes. Head movements can communicate a lot more than words. The Senators approved the nominee.

While awaiting ratification of the Constitution for the United States of America, George Washington said:
"A greater drama is being acted on the American Stage than heretofore has ever been acted in the world."

So when you are "on stage", my tip is to make your public speaking performance a "greater drama" to move your audience to joy or action.

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