Public speaking is considered the most difficult and challenging thing to do by many people. It may be easier to express your ideas in front of 2 or 3 people but speaking in front of a large audience and knowing that they all have gathered to listen to you may give goose bumps to many of us.
In public speaking, your voice and your body language play a vital role. In this post, let us talk about ‘voice’. It is really important to understand the power of voice- having control over it and knowing how to modulate it. It has a few important components. They are:
- Pace: Pace is the speed of your speech. Your pace should be such that it is understandable by your audience. You may have to change your pace from slow to fast or vice versa but whatever it be, it should sound good to your audience. Speaking too quickly is a mistake in public speaking. Keep your pace slower than the pace we have when converse one to one. Give pauses at important points. This will help the listeners to be able completely absorb what you said.
- Volume: Your volume should be loud enough so that your audience can hear you clearly but at the same time being loud does not mean shouting. It is also seen that the volume at which you would be speaking, your audience would also adapt that same volume. On the key sentences or key words, it is good to raise your voice (no shouting). You sound clear and strong when you are loud.
- Pitch: You would get more depth as you would go deeper. Try not to stress your vocal chords too much. Be comfortable with your pitch. Practice increasing your pitch from oral track to vocal chord. In public speaking, it is advised to keep your pitch a little lower as shrilling voice can be annoying. Even when speaking passionately, keep your pitch even.
- Inflection: It means connecting words with feelings by bringing ups and downs of words. Your feelings give words to you and you modulate your voice according to your feelings.
Other than these things, you must concentrate on removing ‘ums’ and ‘uhs’ from your speech as these break the concentration of the audience and may also leave a negative impact about you.
Some letters (like ‘p’ and ‘s’) and words need to practiced more as they may be unclear while using the microphone.
So speak slowly, confidently, clearly and send across just the right message as you wish to deliver. Give your best on the stage.