The initial factors for me depend on whether I have been asked to deliver a speech to a group or whether it is one that I have initiated.
Secondly, if I have been asked to speak, do I actually know anything about the subject I am being asked to speak about? Am I the best person to talk on the required topic?
What specifically is the audience looking for? What do they already know? Have they heard from any other speaker on the topic?
If I am qualified and capable to speak on the topic, what’s in it for me? It’s not always about getting paid for speaking. If I am going to put a significant amount of time into preparing, rehearsing, travelling and delivering, I want something in return. I have learned that my time and effort are worth something.
Additional factors I would want to know:
· Age and demographic of the audience
· How many people will be in the audience [helpful to know for handout preparation]
· Date, time & location
· Who will be introducing me?
· Who will be outroducing me? [that’s where the person thanks you upon completion of your speech]
· What’s happening before and after I am scheduled to speak?
· Will audio-visual equipment be required?
· Will sound amplification be required?
· Are there any taboo subjects?
· If it is a group or organization, has there been any important events happen to them? Examples: a layoff, firings, expansion, mergers and/or deaths
For further discussion on public speaking, speech development, communication skills and Toastmasters, visit the Live For Excellence Book Store for the following publications:
Blow Your Own Horn!: Personal Branding for Business Professionals
Power Networking For Shy People: How to Network Like a Pro
The Power of Persuasion: Mastering the Art of Influence
The Power of Promotion: Online Marketing For Toastmasters Club Growth
The Savvy Emcee: How to be a Dynamic Master of Ceremonies
Working With Words: Adding Life to Your Oral Presentations
Rae A. Stonehouse is an author, speaker, and self-publishing consultant dedicated to helping others embrace constant improvement and overcome challenges. With over 40 years of experience as a Registered Nurse in psychiatry and mental health, Rae brings a wealth of knowledge and passion for self-development to his writing and presentations.
As a 25+ year member of Toastmasters International, Rae has systematically built his communication abilities and self-confidence to share his insights as an author and speaker. His self-help books and personal development presentations aim to have conversational one-on-one connections with readers and audiences.
Rae is known for his wry sense of humor and sage advice delivered in a relatable coaching style. After four decades as a nurse, Rae has rewired rather than retired, actively writing and pursuing public speaking. He strives to share lessons learned to help others achieve personal and professional growth.