- Giving prepared speeches is one of the highlights of your contributions at a meeting. It is where you put in the most effort; receive the most detailed feedback, and where you reap the most substantial rewards.
- The purpose of each speech is given in the manual that you are working from. You should endeavour to make every speech a manual speech.
- Consult first the manual, and establish what the objectives of the speech are. This is fundamental.
- Do not be overly concerned with content. You do not need to “wow” the audience with learned brilliance or scintillating wit. Concentrate on putting together a well structured speech that you feel confident in delivering. The emphasis is on delivery, not content.
- Source material can be from anywhere, perhaps your own experiences or maybe things you’ve read, an opinion you have, advice you’ve been given….
- If you need special equipment such as an overhead projector or whiteboard, markers and eraser, advise the Sergeant at Arms and the Toastmaster a few days in advance.
- As with all assignments, prepare and rehearse to ensure correct timing. Typically, an unrehearsed speech will go over time.
Before the meeting begins
- Discuss with your evaluator any points that you would like him/her to watch out for, over and above the written objectives for the speech
- Advise the Toastmaster of your title, speech number etc, and any special requirements or introduction you have.
During your assignment
- Before the speech, take a few deep breaths, and remember to relax! Stand, adjust your clothing and move to the side ready to walk on at the conclusion of your introduction.
- Acknowledge the Toastmaster and audience, and then deliver your material.
- When finished, hand back to the Toastmaster.
- That is the end of your assignment. You will be evaluated later in the evening.
After the meeting
- At the end of the meeting, have the Evaluator sign your speech manual.