You need to write a speech and you don’t know where to start. What to do?
I start with my passion. All of my best speeches came out of my passion for the subject matter. My enthusiasm and sincerity helps me connect with the audience and promote my message.
So if you are having trouble creating a speech…start with your passion. Do some free writing about your passion. Don’t worry about grammar or spelling…just write. What do you love about your subject? What got you involved? What stories do you have that express your strong feelings for the subject? Once you feel like you’ve written thoroughly about your passion, go back and reread it. Is this your passion? If yes…then good for you! The first step is done! If no, what is standing in your way from expressing your passion? A big question to ask is, “Is this my passion?” If it’s not your passion, then why are giving a speech on it?
Once you have connected to your passion, the next step is to answer the question, “What do I want from my audience?” Pay attention to the emotions you are wanting to generate in your audience. Are you wanting to recruit members, clients or customers? Are you wanting to entertain? Are you wanting to educate?
Now go back to your writing and circle anything you wrote that might address what you want from your audience. If you are wanting to recruit members for your organization, go back to your writing and circle any parts that talk about what you have received from the organization, why you are a member, and why this organization is important to you.
Now comes the meat and bones of the speech. Make a list of facts and anecdotes and combine this with the parts of your writing that you circled. This will give you the broad view. Don’t worry too much about the order, just gather the information.
Read over the accumulated list and think like a member of your audience. Out of the list, which parts would draw you to organization/cause/product? What pieces would be most compelling to you? And which pieces address the emotions you are wanting to solicit? When you are wanting to have an audience laughing and happy, telling a sad anecdote is counterproductive.
Keep the most compelling pieces and let go of the rest. Practice the speech on yourself. Be both presenter and audience. Would you buy what you are selling?
The bottom line is to speak from your heart. Connect to your passion and trust that your message will find those people who need to hear it.