Impromtu Speaking – The Table Topic

The Impromptu Speech

The Impromptu Speech is one of the most challenging  that  Toastmasters can participate in because, unlike the other speeches, participants do not have a prepared speech to deliver.

To do well, one must dissect the topic correctly, develop an organized speech and deliver the speech with pizzazz and confidence, all within a specific time limit.

Seem like a tall order? Not really, if you consider the fact that we often have to give impromptu speeches in our everyday lives such as when we try to sell a product or introduce a friend.

Before I go into specific ways you can tackle each kind of impromptu topic, let me first brief you on certain reminders.

  1. Stick to the time limit. No matter how beautifully delivered your speech is or how well-organized your thoughts are, if you are not able to express yourself for at least one minute but not more than two minutes and thirty seconds, your answer will not meet the set criteria. Moreover, I would suggest that you use a maximum of thirty seconds to think, more than that and the audience gets fidgety and this makes a bad impression.
  2. Make eye contact. This shows that you have confidence and are not afraid to tell everyone what you think. Having good eye contact also shows your sincerity and helps you to connect with the audience.
  3. Speak in a loud clear voice. Make sure  your voice is audible . If no one can hear what you have to say, you won’t be able to make your point.
  4. Use vocal variety.You are not there to bore the audience with your monotony. Vocal variations are needed to give your speech more impact and to highlight your points more effectively.
  5. Use appropriate language and humor. Don’t use overly technical or high-falluting words especially in anecdotes and jokes. Otherwise, you might end up alienating your audience.
  6. Start or end with impact. Having an introduction that immediately catches the audience’s attention or having a conclusion that wraps up your speech with a bang automatically gives you better recall to the audience and especially to the judges.
  7. Use your body. Speech does not rely only the mouth to communicate. Every single part of the body has a role in getting that message across.
  8. Enunciate. If you continuously eat what you are saying, you’ll never taste sweet success.
  9. Practice. Muscles that are not used atrophy. If you do not practice answering as many kinds of questions as possible before the contest, chances are you’ll get mental block during the contest.
  10. Be humble. No matter how much you know, there will always be something you don’t know. So if at first you don’t succeed, at least you know what you need to do to do well next time.
  11. Above All have a go and have fun
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