Public Speaking: Speaking from the Heart II

July 12th, 2009 by Frank Damelio

73976251This is the second time I’ve witnessed a speaker ditch the notes and speak from the heart. Once again, it was a huge success.

In a previous public speaking blog entry, I recounted how a presenter’s computer quit, and she was forced to complete the rest of her presentation without her Powerpoint notes.  It proved to be the best thing that happened to her, as she recaptured and maintained the audience’s attention.

Recently, I witnessed a best-man toast.  As is typical, he unfolded a piece of paper and began reading – boring. After a few sentences, he paused, looked up at the guests and said, “I’m going to just speak from the heart, how about that?” The audience applauded, he folded the paper, and placed it in his pocket. There was a small pause, and you could feel how every person was eagerly anticipating his next words.

He went on to speak in a conversational tone about the groom. He earned a ton of laughs and many “aawwws” from the guests. His speech moved everyone in attendance. It was one of the best I’ve seen, and I know he wouldn’t have had nearly that reaction had he simply read his notes.

Once again, case-in-point, when you choose to “talk with” instead of “read to” an audience, you will make a connection, and they will remember you and your message. You might think that it’s a daunting task not to read from your slides and notes, but the beauty is that your audience gives you tons of leeway when you are speaking from the heart. They will simply like you more, and likeability is one of the six pillars of persuasion.

Clearly, when you are giving a training or a much longer presentation, you may need to refer to your notes or slides to make sure you are on track. That’s okay, as long as you are using them as a guide, and not for the verbiage of the presentation itself.

Nothing will endear your audience more than speaking from the heart.

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3 Responses to “Public Speaking: Speaking from the Heart II”

  1. Target Intellect Blog » Public Speaking: Speaking From the Heart Says:

    […] Speaking from the Heart II […]

  2. Target Intellect Blog » Public Speaking: Don’t Use PowerPoint As A Crutch Says:

    […] Speaking from the heart  & speaking from the heart II […]

  3. Grover Okoye Says:

    Have you ever in your life gone to a wedding party and felt sorry for the groom because he picked the biggest loser buddy to be the best man. It happened to me, we went a very elegant wedding and the Best Man’s speech was so inadequate that it was scary that this person was the groom’s best friend. After they located the best man, he got up to the microphone and presented this speech: “This couple, Bill and Monica are great and I hope their life is filled with fulfillment and all those things that make a marriage great.” This is what you get when you don’t plan in advance a speech. When I got married couple of years later I didn’t want my best man to be the subject of gossip for years to come so I sent him this package on how to write a best man speech. It relieved the anxiety and his speech was outstanding, relaxed and poignant.

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