Summary: Does speaking in front of people give you nightmares? Here are five ways in which you can tackle your fear of public speaking.

The fear of public speaking is a common social phobia that affects approximately 25% of the global population. This makes it extremely difficult for entrepreneurs and small business owners who are looking to widen their prospects by bringing in a new line of products and services.

Though there are many business coaching programs on public speaking, learning from a business motivational speaker will speed up your progress, if you are willing to learn. Whether you are a student, a young entrepreneur seeking investors, a small business owner looking for customers or a CEO of a Multinational Company, public speaking is a way for you to make yourself accessible to your respective target audiences. It not only helps to create a bond but also shapes company culture.

Here are five ways that will immediately improve your public speaking skills:

1. No Introduction Please!

This might come as a surprise to many as our first point simply goes against the rule book of many online business programs. However, there is a logic behind it. Would you like a speaker on the panel to thank the organizers and share information about himself that you already know? Definitely not! You must have received an introduction about the speaker and all the related information through mail.

So instead of repeating the same information, you can start by beginning with a compelling or funny story. Make your audience laugh and create an experience that’s worth the audience’s time and attention.

To get easy techniques on public speaking skills, you can watch this amazing video by Dr. Vivek Bindra, the best business coach in India, here:

2. Hook Your Audience Fast

Our second point is about capturing your audience's attention. Catching your audience's attention in the first 30 seconds is an essential factor that people don’t often get right. Often many business motivational speakers jump straight to their presentation as they are too concerned about delivering all of the content in the time available. Start with a short and relevant anecdote that illustrates the idea you are presenting. Don’t forget to link it with a powerful call for action.

3. Minimize the use of PowerPoint

Would you rather want your audience to listen to you or furiously scribble notes? Permit the audience to listen, ask questions, and make eye contact without having to worry about retaining technical information. If you have a lot of data, plan to send it to the audience afterward.

If you have to use a PowerPoint presentation, follow the 10/20/30 rule. Your presentation should have 10 slides, last no longer than 20 minutes and the font should be at least 30-point. However, the best way to create a PowerPoint slide is the 6/6/6 rule. The best presentations are those with an opening and closing slide and six slides of content, no more than six bullet points on each slide, and no more than six words per bullet point.

4. Keep Your Audience Engaged by Asking Questions

Many business motivation speakers talk for 30-45 minutes and leave the end for questions. But, this can make your audience zone out from the ongoing session in which you might be sharing relevant information with them. Plan for questions throughout your speech and take breaks to prompt questions. This allows you to read the audience, and if you’re losing them, pull them back with an engaging question.

This strategy also creates an opportunity to learn from the audience and use their insights to make the speech even more compelling.

5. Rehearse, Rehearse, Rehearse

Well, speaking in front of a large audience can surely give you nightmares, if you are not comfortable. This is why rehearsals are paramount. Rehearsing is a full-body experience of visualizing the audience and considering your verbal and nonverbal communication—body language, tone, physical position on the stage, inflection, and how you’ll make eye contact with the people sitting to listen to you.

Make notes and use them for run-throughs. Try to reduce your dependence on the notes by practicing more. Finally, rehearse in front of a mirror. Notice your body language, facial expressions, and hand gestures to evaluate whether they align with the information you are representing.

And last, but not the least, leave something valuable behind. You can also ask your audience to sign up for your email newsletter. Try these five ways we have mentioned above, and see yourself improving at public speaking.

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