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THE IMPORTANCE OF SPEECH DELIVERY

THE IMPORTANCE OF SPEECH DELIVERY 7
SPEAKING IN PUBLIC: SPEECH DELIVERY 334onsider Mia’s story: CHAPTER OUTLINE My sister needed an organ transplant and, as she waited and waited on the WHAT IS SPEECH DELIVERY C organtransplant waiting list, I learned a lot about the many rules that govern the organdonation waitinglist system. I decided to give my informative speech on this THE IMPORTANCE OF SPEECH waiting list, as it is something that I now know a lot about. I practiced my speech and DELIVERY I felt that I was ready. When I delivered my speech, I concluded by telling my audience KEY ISSUES IN EFFECTIVE about my sister. We were very close and she passed away waiting for an organ that never SPEECH DELIVERY arrived. I started crying; I couldn’t help it. I think it upset the audience. I think everyone Overcoming Anxiety will remember my speech and the delivery, but I’m not sure what they’ll remember about Preparing Carefully organ donation. Setting the Tone Considering Language and Style Mia’s delivery on the topic of organdonation waiting lists definitely made an Incorporating Visual Aids impression on her audience. After her speech, her classmates looked as though they Being Aware of Time Limits wanted to say something but didn’t know what to say. One student hugged Mia, Choosing a Delivery Method and everyone will remember Mia’s speech because it touched them, she had a Projecting a Persona command of the subject matter, and her delivery demonstrated her strong commit Practicing Your Speech ment to the topic. It also left many students feeling awkward. Many people think of public speaking as all about delivery, but delivery is—as we THE INDIVIDUAL, SPEECH hope you have seen in the previous chapter—only one aspect of the entire process. DELIVERY, AND SOCIETY Delivery alone will not result in a strong speech. In this chapter, we will discuss Ethos, Pathos, and Logos important issues surrounding speech delivery, including overcoming anxiety, set SPEECH DELIVERY AND ETHICS ting the tone, considering language and style, incorporating visual aids, being aware Use Language Sensitively of the time, choosing a delivery method, projecting a persona, and practicing the Use Visual Aids Carefully speech. Finally, we’ll address some ethical issues relevant to speech delivery. But Respect Time Limits first, we’ll learn what delivery is and why it is important. Summary Once you have read this chapter, you will be able to: Key Terms ● Explain the importance of speech delivery. Chapter Review Questions ● Identify key issues in speech delivery. Activities ● Connect speech delivery to the three artistic proofs: ethos, pathos and logos. Web Activities ● Understand the ethical issues in speech delivery. 335336 CHAPTER 14 Speaking in Public: Speech Delivery delivery WHAT IS SPEECH DELIVERY the presentation of the speech In the context of public speaking, delivery refers to the presentation of the speech you have you have researched, organized, researched, organized, outlined, and practiced. Delivery is important, of course, because it outlined, and practiced is what is most immediate to the audience. Delivery relies on both verbal communication communication apprehension (see Chapter 3) and nonverbal communication (see Chapter 4). While some rhetoricians feelings of anxiety that accompany separate style from delivery, we have found it useful to discuss the two together, as the style public speaking. Commonly of the speech should be connected to its presentation. referred to as stage fright THE IMPORTANCE OF SPEECH DELIVERY Once you have selected and researched your topic, and prepared and organized your pres entation, you will need to work on your delivery. Without diligent work on the initial parts of the speech process, however, even the most impressive delivery has little meaning. On the other hand, combined with a wellprepared and practiced presentation, delivery can be a key to your success as a speaker. Delivery can communicate your confidence and preparedness to your audience. Effective delivery shows your audience that you have researched your topic and understand what you are speaking about. An effective delivery allows you to pull it all together—to showcase your work and to speak with confidence during your delivery. Think about some of the brief courtroom speeches you’ve seen or heard by lawyers on various television shows, such as Law and Order. Think about how they communicate confidence and enthusiasm in their arguments when making a case to the jury. If an attorney does not seem confident in his or her delivery, how might it affect the jury’s decision In the following section, we focus on eight important aspects of delivery: overcoming anxiety, setting the tone, considering language and style, incorporating visual aids, being aware of time, choosing a delivery method, projecting a speaking persona, and finally, practicing and putting your speech into action. KEY ISSUES IN EFFECTIVE SPEECH DELIVERY While we often think of delivery as happening at the moment of the speech, the fact is that the foundations of effective delivery should be laid out well before you step up to the podium. Let’s look at some of these key issues. Overcoming Anxiety If you feel nervous about speaking in public, you should know that it is normal to experi ence some communication apprehension, or “stage fright,” when you deliver a speech. Even people you wouldn’t expect to experience speech apprehension do. The wellknown actor Mel Gibson is reputed to have been so overcome with nervousness in front of other people during his first performance that he had to sit down—his legs were too weak to support him. Other notable celebrities who have experienced similar stage fright include Rod Stewart, Barbra Streisand, Laurence Olivier, and Carly Simon, among others (http:// www.msnbc.msn.com/id/20727420/). Mick Book and Michael Edelstein (2009) have even interviewed 40 celebrities about stage fright and how they overcome it, as a guide to helping others overcome their anxiety. Extreme fear of public speaking is the numberone social phobia in the United States (Bruce Saeed, 1999). Speakers may express apprehension in a variety of ways—as Mel Gibson experienced when his legs felt weak—but some of the most common symptoms include shaking hands and legs, voice fluctuations, and rapid speech. Moreover, almost all speakers worry that their nervousness is going to be obvious to the audience. Fortunately, many signs of anxiety are not visible. For example, if your hands sweat or your heart pounds when you speak, your audience will probably not notice. Read It Happened to Me: Jamie for the story of one of our students, who realized she was the only person who knew she was nervous.Key Issues in Effective Speech Delivery 337 As a speaker, your goal is not to eliminate feelings of apprehension, but to use them to invigorate your presentation. Having some apprehension can motivate you to prepare carefully; it can give you the energy and alertness that make your presentation lively and interesting. Public speaking instructors usually say that they worry more about students who aren’t nervous, as it may reflect lack of concern and motivation, than about those who are. Although you may feel that your communication apprehen sion is too much to overcome, statistics are encouraging. Researchers have found that only “one out of 20 people suffers such serious fear of speaking that he or she is es sentially unable to get through IT HAPPENED TO ME: Jamie a public speech” (Sprague Stuart, 2000, p. 73). Your own When you called on me, my stomach sank. I was ready to run out of the building. When feelings of apprehension will I started my speech, I could feel sweat beading up on my forehead. Then, I thought likely be much less than that. about all the tools you gave us. In an instant, it seemed, I was done. I stood there, ready Still, several strategies can help for criticism on how bad my speech was. But the class applauded. They had not seen you manage (not eliminate) that I was at all nervous. Your comments were that I seemed like a natural speaker. your fear. Preparing Carefully Experts have discovered that it is not the amount of time you spend preparing, but how you prepare. People who are extremely anxious about giving a speech tend to spend most of their time preparing notes. On the other hand, speakers who have less appre hension and are more effective prepare careful notes, but they also spend considerable time analyzing their anticipated audience (Ayres, 1996), a subject we will turn to later in this chapter. Practice Your Speech Before You Give It There is no substitute for practice. However, going over the points silently in your head does not count as practice. Practice means giving your speech out loud (possibly in front of a mirror) while timing it and later asking a sympa thetic friend (or friends) to listen to it and give you feedback. Focus on a Friendly Face Once you are in front of your real audience, find a friendly face in the crowd and focus on that person. The peak anxiety time for most speakers is the first moment of confronting the audience (Behnke Sawyer, 1999, 2004). Receiving positive reinforce ment early on is an excellent way to get over this initial anxiety. When you spot that one person who looks friendly or nods in agreement, keep your eyes on her or him until you feel relaxed. Try Relaxation Techniques While the fear may be in your head, it manifests itself in physiological changes in your body; that is, your muscles tense, your breathing becomes shallow, and adrenaline pumps through your system. Effective Finding a friendly face in the relaxation techniques for such situations include deep breathing and visualizing a successful audience can be helpful speech (Behnke Sawyer, 2004). Shallow breathing limits your oxygen intake and adds in reducing anxiety. further stress to your body, creating a vicious cycle. Sometimes we’re not even aware of these stress indicators. See the Building Your Communication Skills: Try Relaxing Breathing Exercises to learn how to break the shallowbreathing cycle.338 CHAPTER 14 Speaking in Public: Speech Delivery Building Your Communication SKILLS Try Relaxing Breathing Exercises Dr. Weil, the health guru, recommends this simple exercise that requires no equipment and can be done anywhere, anytime you feel stressed (like before speaking in public). 1. Place the tip of your tongue against the ridge of tissue just behind your upper front teeth, and keep it there through the entire exercise. 2. Exhale completely through your mouth, making a whoosh sound. 3. Close your mouth and inhale quietly through your nose to a mental count of four. 4. Hold your breath for a count of seven. 5. Exhale completely through your mouth, making a whoosh sound, to a count of eight. This is one breath. Now inhale again and repeat the cycle three more times, for a total of four breaths. You’ll notice that, after a few breaths, you’ll feel calm, as the exercise is a natural tranquilizer for the nervous system. SOURCE: Andrew Weil. (n. d.). Breathing: Three exercises. Retrieved February 16, 2010, from http://www.drweil.com/ drw/u/ART00521/threebreathingexercises.html Do not admit your nervousness. Do not say to yourself or to your audience, “Oh, I’m so nervous up here” or “I think I’m going to pass out” These kinds of statements only reinforce your own feelings of apprehension as well as highlighting them for the audience. Talk Yourself into a Strong Performance If you watch professional athletes, such as tennis players, you may notice them talking to themselves. Often, these are messages meant for themselves to motivate them to play a better game, hit the ball more accurately, make better backhand returns, and so on. The purpose of this kind of speech is positive motivation. In public speaking, a similar kind of psychological technique can be helpful. As you prepare your speech, practice your speech, and get ready to give your speech, tell yourself that you are going to do very well. Be positive and take a positive and confident approach to the speech. Consider the Importance of Your Topic to Others It may be helpful to think about the significance of your topic to others as one way to gain the confidence to give a strong performance. For example, if you are speaking about domestic violence, gun violence, or other important social issues, think about the people who suffer, whose lives are ruined, or whose lives are lost, and your own nervousness will seem insignificant in relation to the point of your speech and the impact you want to have. You don’t want your apprehension to become more important than the difference you want to make with your speech. Thinking about others can help you take the focus off of yourself. Give Speeches It may seem simple, but this is the strategy most public speaking instructors and students use to overcome anxiety (Levasseur, Dean, Pfaff, 2004). In short, it becomes easier and easier with each speech. As one seasoned speaker said, “Learning to become a confident speaker is like learning to swim. You can watch people swim, read about it, listen to people talk about it, but if you don’t get into the water, you’ll never learn” (Sanow, 2005). TakeKey Issues in Effective Speech Delivery 339 tone opportunities to hone your public speaking skills. Volunteer to give speeches, or become the mood or feeling the speaker a member of Toastmasters International or a local group of public speakers. Take every creates opportunity that arises to give a speech. style Setting the Tone the type of language and phrasing a speaker uses and the effect it Tone refers to the mood or feeling the speaker creates. Sometimes the tone is set by the creates occasion. For example, speaking at a wedding and speaking at a funeral require differ ent tones, and these tones are determined more by the situation than by the speaker. In other situations—such as speaking in front of a city council to praise them for making a courageous decision about building a new library or park or criticizing them for doing so during a time of tight budgets—the occasion allows the speaker to determine the tone of a part of a meeting. In these kinds of situations, the speaker has the ability to set the tone. When a speaker rallies a crowd at a protest, the speaker has tremendous power to set the tone—as Martin Luther King Jr. often did, so that the crowd was incited not to do violence but to protest nonviolently. In these cases, the speaker may have an ethical obligation to consider the consequences of setting different tones for an audience. If you are smiling and look happy when you get up to delivery your speech, you will set a tone of warmth and friendliness. If you look serious and tense, you will set a different sort of tone—one of anxiety and discomfort. Remember: You set the tone for your speech long before you begin speaking—in fact, the tone can be set as soon as the audience sees you. Your tone should be related to the topic of your speech. If you are giving a speech intended to inspire people to take action—such as recycling, participating in a beach clean up, or walking in a fundraiser—an uplifting and positive tone can motivate your audience. For example, when Barack Obama spoke about race in “A More Perfect Union” (see Chapter 16, pages 373–374), he used an uplifting tone: “This time, we want to talk about the men and women of every color and creed who serve together and fight together and bleed together under the same proud flag.” If you are telling a tragic personal story, your tone would probably be quite serious. If you are campaigning for one candidate over another, you may want to set a more serious tone for your candidate and a more ridiculing one for the opponent. In Chapter 16, Rudy Giuliani’s “Speech to the Republican National Convention,” (pages 374–375) set a more aggressive tone as he argued for John McCain and against Barack Obama. For example, when he notes, “This is not a personal attack . . . it’s a statement of fact—Barack Obama has never led anything. Nothing. Nada,” his use of repetition emphasizes the tone of his criticism of Obama. Although your tone will run throughout your speech, it can vary as you proceed. For example, you might start out with a serious tone as you point out a problem of some kind, such as cruelty to animals, but you might end with a much more positive tone in moving your audience to address the problem. You may end with a very uplifting tone that invites your audience to envision a future without cruelty to animals and to help make that vision become a reality. Considering Language and Style As a speaker, the language you use to give your speech will shape the style of your speech. Style refers to the type of language and phrasing a speaker uses, and the effect it creates. Your style can be ornate and indirect; such a style was common in the nineteenth century but is less so today. For example, consider the ornate style used in this selection from Daniel Webster’s 1825 “Bunker Hill Monument Oration”: The great event in the history of the continent, which we are now met here to commem orate, that prodigy of modern times, at once the wonder and the blessing of the world, is the American Revolution. In a day of extraordinary prosperity and happiness, of high national honor, distinction, and power, we are brought together, in this place, by our love of country, by our admiration of exalted character, by our gratitude for signal services and patriotic devotion (Webster, 1989, p. 127).340 CHAPTER 14 Speaking in Public: Speech Delivery Alternately, your style can be plain and direct. For example, if Daniel Webster had chosen a plainer style to commemorate the Bunker Hill Monument, he might have said something like this: The American Revolution was a great event in our history, and we are here to com memorate its importance by erecting this monument. These two examples (the first one real, the second one hypothetical) show that an ornate style can stimulate a more emotional response and, in this case, create great pride in the establishment of the United States. The plainer style, on the other hand, gets right to the point and values economy in wording. In his “Last Lecture,” Randy Pausch (see Chapter 15, pages 359–360) speaks in a plainer style so that he can communicate clearly and easily with his audience. He uses a plain style with lesswordy language to create a more informal relationship with the audience. The key is to select a style that is appropriate for the speech you are giving. For example, you may use a plain style if you are giving instructions in a “howto” sort of speech, but you may use a more eloquent style if you are celebrating someone’s accomplishments at a 75th birthday. When choosing a speech style, be aware that the style you use can either enhance or undermine your message. For example, if you speak at a meeting of the local school board using an informal style—maybe referring to the board members as “dudes”—the audience will likely focus more on you than on your topic, because your style would inter fere with your ability to convey your message. Or, if you were asked to deliver a speech about college life to a class of fifth graders, you would likely use different words than you would if you were asked to speak to a class of high school seniors. In addition to word choice, you might adjust your sentence length. Overly complex sentences will likely lose younger audi ences. Think of telling a story to your friends. How would the way you narrate the story change if you were telling that same story to your parents or coworkers The two main elements of style are clarity and appropriateness. Your speech style has the element of clarity if listeners are able to grasp the message you intended to communi cate. Using precise language increases clarity. In everyday conversation, speakers often use words and phrases without much attention to precision. For example, if someone says, “Bob’s totally gross,” we learn little about Bob; we only know that the speaker has some objection to him or dislikes him for some reason that we do not know. But if the speaker says, “I don’t like Bob because he uses vulgar language and ridicules his friends,” then we know more specifically how the speaker perceives Bob. In the interest of clarity, speakers should use their words in precise ways. For example, in describing how someone died, you have many words to choose from: killed, murdered, terminated, exterminated, or assassinated. Consider the different messages each one con veys. If someone was killed, it sounds less intentional than if someone was murdered. To say that someone was terminated sounds very casual and flippant, like a character in a science fiction or action movie, while exterminated communicates a far more sinister death. After all, we call an exterminator if we have a bug infestation, but to exterminate people sounds more closely related to genocide or mass murders. If someone is assassinated, it communi cates political reasons for this murder. Think carefully about the words you use and what they communicate. In addition to focusing on the clarity of your language, you also need to consider its clarity appropriateness, which generally refers to how formal or informal it should be or how the use of language to increase well adapted the language is to the audience’s sensitivity and expectations. In general, precision and reduce ambiguity speakers tend to strive for a more formal style when they are speaking to a larger audience precise language and a less formal style with smaller audiences. Speakers are also apt to use a more formal the use of language to give more style during a more formal occasion, such as a big public wedding or funeral, and a less specificity and exactness in formal style for more casual events, such as a family holiday dinner. Though we can’t offer communicating a strict formula for levels of formality or appropriateness, a good rule of thumb is to strive to match your style of presentation to the type of clothing you might wear to the appropriateness speaking event (see Building Your Communication Skills: The Importance of Dress). Just as following the relevant rules, norms you wouldn’t wear your favorite cutoffs and tank top to a job interview at a bank, you and expectations for specific relationships and situations shouldn’t use a very informal style of speech if you are making a presentation to yourKey Issues in Effective Speech Delivery 341 Building Your Communication SKILLS The Importance of Dress How you dress for a public presentation can influence how others respond to you, as well as how you feel about yourself. Here are some suggestions from the Image Resource Group website at: http://www.professionalimagedress.com/dressprofessionaldress.htm This website has suggestions on how professional dress reflects on an organization. As a speaker, these guidelines might be helpful, but you need to pay attention to the occasion as well. While you may not follow all these suggestions, the importance of how we dress cannot be overlooked. Go to the webpage and check out the guidelines. You might take the quizzes as well. Enhance the image of those who will take your business to the next level Professional dress is critical in business. It is more than our public skin, it is a language. The way you package yourself sends a message about you, your skills, and your organization. It takes only a few seconds to form a first impression, and more than half of that first impres sion is based on appearance. Professional dress for men and women is also a critical component of your organization’s brand. Maintaining a competitive edge requires that your staff sustain a consistent visual impression with customers. Your employees are the ambassadors of your organization, and the way they are perceived determines how your organization is perceived by customers, the community, and the marketplace. company’s clients. Similarly, as you may have been told, if you don’t know what to wear, it When you give a is often better to overdress than to underdress, and the same is true with the appropriate public speech, what is ness and formality of your speaking style—that is, it is usually best to speak a little more the appropriate way formally than to speak too informally. Becoming too familiar with an audience (especially to dress How should one that does not know you) can alienate them and reduce your effectiveness as a speaker. you dress for the The use of very strong language can also impact your audience and gain their atten speeches that you tion, although this strategy has to be used very carefully. In August 2009, Treasury give in class Secretary Timothy Geithner is reported to have “blasted top U.S. financial regulators in an expletivelaced critique . . . as he responded to frustration ...over the Obama administra tion’s faltering plan to overhaul U.S. financial regulation” (Paletta Solomon, 2009, p. A1). Mr. Geithner’s fairly aggressive language use could be received in various ways. First, because he is not known for typically using this kind of language, his “repeated use of obscenities” (p. A1) likely made a strong impression. Second, his language choice certainly brought attention to his point, as his rant was covered by the national press. Third, some people saw this language choice as reflective of someone who was losing patience and power. Many observers saw Geithner’s approach as a sign that his power was waning, along with the possibility for change in financial regulation. In contrast, however, Stanley Bing, a columnist for Fortune magazine, saw something different: I love it when executives drop the whole statesmanlike thing and get down to what really works: Force. The manipulation of fear. The exercise of power. And nothing establishes who’s in charge more than a good display of oldfashioned, fistintheface anger. And what conveys that best Profanity. Tim Geithner dropped the FBomb repeatedly the other day. And I think it’s safe to say it’s living proof that genuine regula What do you think tory reform is now on the way. about the use of obscenities in (http://stanleybing.blogs.fortune.cnn.com/2009/08/04/geithnerdropsthefbombor speaking Is it ever nowweknowreformisontheway/comments) appropriate and While it may be too early to know the effect of Mr. Geithner’s strong language, he effective certainly gained notoriety for his language choice.342 CHAPTER 14 Speaking in Public: Speech Delivery jargon Giving a clear speech also means avoiding jargon, or technical terminology associated technical terminology associated with a specific topic. Remember that, while you may know your topic well, your audience with a specific topic may not necessarily be familiar with the words being used. If you were giving a speech to the American Heart Association, it would be fine to assume that your audience is familiar with stylistic devices medical terminology like stat (immediately) or sequelae (condition due to prior disease). In figures of speech and tropes that other cases, it would not be wise to assume that your audience shares your knowledge of are used to shape the style of a message such complex language. Similarly, be careful when using acronyms, like m.i. (myocardial infarction, or heart attack) or h.a.(headache). If you do use an acronym, be sure to clearly metaphor define it for your audience. Otherwise, you may lose them before you even begin. a figure of speech that compares One way to elevate your speaking style is to incorporate stylistic devices like two things or ideas to highlight a metaphors or hyperbole in your speech. John F. Kennedy was well known for his effective particular point use of rhetorical devices. For example, in a 1961 speech delivered to the Joint Convention hyperbole of the General Court of Massachusetts, Kennedy used the metaphor city upon a hill to a figure of speech that exaggerates emphasize the importance of the role played by Massachusetts’ politicians in the national a characteristic to capture audience leadership: “Today the eyes of all people are truly upon us—and our governments, in attention and interest every branch, at every level, national, state and local, must be as a city upon a hill— constructed and inhabited by men aware of their great trust and their great responsibili ties” (Kennedy, 1961). Vivid imagery is a crucial part of an effective speech. It is one thing to make your point—it is quite another to make your point through rich imagery and description. A number of stylistic or literary devices are commonly used to aid in such vivid description; for example, alliteration, or the repetition of consonant sounds at the beginnings of words, can be effective. Alliteration can range from the mundane like “bang for the buck” or “high on the hog” to more sophisticated examples such as these article titles: “Science has Spoiled my Supper” and “Kurdish Control of Kirkuk Creates a Powder Keg in Iraq” (Oppel, 2008; Wylie, 1954). For more information on stylistic devices, see Building Your Communication Skills: Stylistic Devices. After considering delivery issues of tone, language, and style, the next step is to think about how best to incorporate visual aids into your speech—the topic we turn to next. Building Your Communication SKILLS Stylistic Devices Using rhetorical devices can make your speeches more memorable and give them more style. Some popular rhetorical devices include: Alliteration and Assonance. Alliteration refers to the repetition of a consonant • sound in a series of words. During a commencement address at Knox College in Illinois, thenSenator Obama proclaimed America to be “a place where destiny was not a destination, but a journey to be shared and shaped” (Gallo, March 3, 2008, www.businessweek.com). In this brief phrase, Obama echoed the sound of destiny with destination and shared with shaped. Alliteration draws the audience’s atten tion to particular words, thereby reinforcing their rhetorical power. Assonance refers to the repetition of a vowel sound in a string of words. For example, “tilting at windmills” or “high as a kite” are examples of assonance, because the vowel sound i repeats. Hyperbole. Hyperbole refers to an exaggeration intended to capture attention and • interest. For instance, when describing her exhaustion, Jackie proclaimed, “I feel like I’ve walked a million miles today.” Metaphor and Simile. Both devices are types of comparisons. Similes are phrases that • compare one thing to another with the use of the words like or as. For instance, in the film Forrest Gump, the title character declared, “Life is like a box of chocolates.Key Issues in Effective Speech Delivery 343 You never know what you’re gonna get” (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0109830/ quotes). A metaphor is a comparison that does not use like or as and analogizes things that would otherwise seem to have little or nothing in common at first glance. John Donne’s quote “No man is an island” is a classic example of a metaphor (http://www.poemhunter.com/poem/nomanisanisland/). Onomatopoeia. This refers to the use of words that sound like they mean. For in • stance, when building tension in a narrative, you may suddenly shout, “Bang Boom” Parallelism and Repetition. Parallelism refers to the repetition of “the same word or • expression at the beginning of successive sentences or phrases” (Gallo, March 3, 2008, www.businessweek.com). Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech is one in which the use of parallelism and repetition was made famous. Personification. Personification refers to the process of giving an inanimate object • human qualities. For instance, when describing the rain, you might say that the sky is crying. visual aids Incorporating Visual Aids audiovisual materials that help a As a student in elementary school, you may have used visual aids in “show and tell” speaker reach intended speech speeches. In these speeches, the visual aid—perhaps a favorite toy, gift, or souvenir—was goals the central focus of your speech. Now, as part of your college coursework, your instructors may again require that you use visual aids in speeches. Even if you are not required to do so, you may wish to consider incorporating them in your presentations. Visual aids are any audiovisual materials that help you reach your speech goals. Some of the most common kinds are video clips, photographs, models, DVD segments, and PowerPoint slides. (For more tips on preparing effective PowerPoint slides, see Did You Know PowerPoint Tips). To introduce your visual aid during your presentation, follow these general three steps: 1. Introduce the visual aid to your audience by explaining what they will see. 2. Point to the parts of the visual aid that you want them to focus on. 3. Reaffirm the major point of the visual aid, thus pointing the audience to the conclusion you want them to draw. In a sense, the use of visual aids is a microcosm of your overall speech—that is, it has an introduction, a body, and a conclusion. DID YOU KNOW PowerPoint Tips When using PowerPoint and other computerbased presentation materials, consider the following tips: Be aware of your font type. Script fonts are typically difficult to see when projected • onto a large screen, so keep to the traditional Serif and Sans Serif fonts. These are easier to read than some of the more playful ones. Your font type should also align with the occasion. If you are giving a presentation for work, stick to a font that communicates professionalism. Be aware of your font size. Be sure that the audience will be able to read the font. This • may require you to check on the size of the room in which you will be presenting. Be aware of your font color. Keep it simple. When projected onto a large screen, blue • letters on a black background, for instance, can be difficult to see. Use animation sparingly, if at all. While animating fonts can enliven a presentation • and make a point more effectively, do not use this computer function to excess. It may be distracting.344 CHAPTER 14 Speaking in Public: Speech Delivery Keep in mind that although visual aids can help you reach your speech goals, some can distract the audience from your main points. For example, if you distribute a handout during your speech, audiences will tend to focus on the handout and you will lose their attention. Also, if you finish with a visual aid and leave it up on the screen, the audience will continue to focus on it rather than on you. Finally, speaking to the visual aid instead of your audience is another way to lose audience attention. While it may be tempting to avoid eye contact with the audience, you risk disconnecting with your audience. Let’s look at some general guidelines for handling visual aids effectively. Prepare Your Visual Aids in Advance If you use the blackboard as a visual aid, for example, you communicate informality and lack of preparation. Your lack of preparation could be insulting to some audiences, who may have made a major effort to come to your presentation. If, on the other hand, you incorporate relevant and welldesigned PowerPoint slides, you communicate that you have carefully and thoughtfully prepared your presentation. Use Visual Aids That Are Easy to See If your visual aid is too small—for example, if you hold up a 3 × 5 photograph in front of a room full of listeners—it will frustrate your audience. As you speak about something they have difficulty seeing, many audiences will tune you out. Once you have lost your audience, you will have a very hard time recapturing their attention, and you won’t reach your speech goals. Ensure That the Equipment You Need Will Be Available When You Speak For example, if you want to use a PowerPoint presentation, be sure the room has the appro priate equipment. Today, many classrooms are “smart classrooms” and have this equipment, but it is always best to check. Sometimes classrooms only have overhead projectors, and if you know this, you can prepare overhead transparencies to use in your presentation. Prepare for Potential Technology Failure Computers fail, overheads fail, and DVD players are not always correctly connected to LCD projectors. No equipment is foolproof, so you may not be able to show your visual aids. Thus, make sure that your speech can stand on its own and that you are prepared to speak even without the visual aids. To use visual aids in a way that will help you meet your speech goal, see the Building Your Communication Skills: Visual Aids Checklist. Building Your Communication SKILLS Visual Aids Checklist Although you may have carefully prepared your visual aids in advance, it is also important to use them effectively in your presentation. Here are some tips for using visual aids: Be sure to practice with the visual aids, as speaking and handling visual aids at the same time can be tricky. Be sure that you are speaking to the audience and maintaining eye contact with them, not looking at the visual aids. It is a good idea to avoid passing around objects, as the audience will be distracted from you and focus on the object or on passing the object. Try to keep the focus on you. Explain your visual aid to your audience. Do not simply show it to them and assume that they will know what points you are trying to clarify with the visual aid. Tell them what to focus on and what to notice.Key Issues in Effective Speech Delivery 345 As your own classroom experience has likely demonstrated, when used well, visual aids can be very effective in helping an audience understand a topic. When you use them, be sure that they strengthen your presentation and make your points clearer—not detract from the presentation or fill in as a substitute for content. To determine whether the visual aid is going to enhance or detract from your presentation, ask yourself why you are using it and how it will help to reach your speech goals. For example, in a presentation about types of skin can cer, you could develop a visual aid showing the prevalence of each type and what it looks like. No matter how dynamic your personality, if your visual aids are not well organized, prepared, and executed effectively, you can lose your audience’s interest. Using visual aids that are effectively incorporated will give you confidence in your presentation. If you have prepared an engaging introduction and a clearly organized body with a strong conclusion, all tied together with the artful use of signposts and visual aids, you will have laid the foun dation for a successful speech. After you have selected your style of presentation and incorporated your visual aids, you are ready to consider the presentation of your speech. In the following sections, we will look at several more guidelines for the delivery of your speech. Being Aware of Time Limits In the United States, we often think about time as absolute—a phenomenon that can be broken down into clearly measurable units: seconds, minutes, and hours. Yet communication scholars have repeatedly shown that notions of time are relative, as described in Chapter 4 (nonverbal communication). Many public speakers experience this relative nature of time. Some, for example, feel that they have been speaking for a very long time, while their audience may feel that they have heard only a short speech. More often, however, speakers feel that they have not spoken for very long, while their audience is wondering whether the speech will ever end. Knowing how long to speak is an important aspect of the art of public speaking. The length of any speech should be guided not only by audience expectations and context, but by your content as well. In some instances, the guidelines are rather loose—such as speeches at weddings and retirement celebrations, for example. In other cases, the time limits are very strict, and you may be cut off before you finish. For example, a citizen advocating a position in city council meetings often faces strict time limits. In this case, you should be respectful and adhere to those time guidelines. On the one hand, if your speech is significantly longer than expected, your audience may become restless, impatient, and even hostile. On the other hand, if your speech is significantly shorter than the time expected, your audience may leave feeling disappointed or shortchanged. After all, they may have made a significant effort to be at your presenta tion, with expectations that remain unfulfilled. Also, your speech may be part of a larger program, and the planners may be depending on you to fill a particular time slot. In classroom speech situations, you are often told how long to speak—say, for five minutes. In this situation, your audience expects you to speak for only five minutes—and your instructor expects you to speak for no less than five minutes. One way to make sure you comply is to time yourself when you practice your speech. Doing this will ensure that you know how long your speech runs and whether you need to adjust it. If you have prepared, practiced, and timed your speech, you should have no problem meeting your time requirement. In nonclassroom situations, the goal is to meet the time expectations of the audience. If others are also scheduled to speak, be sure that your speech is not too long. If you speak for much longer than expected, someone else may not have the opportunity to speak. Your long presentation may reflect badly on you, and you could be perceived as inconsiderate of others. Choosing a Delivery Method Speakers have several methods for delivering a message—ranging from spontaneous, off thecuff remarks to speeches carefully planned, written, revised, and rehearsed. Let’s look first at the more spontaneous variety, referred to as impromptu speeches. Impromptu speeches are those that have not been prepared ahead of the presentation— perhaps because the speaker has been given very little notice or no notice at all. For example, impromptu speech at an event like a business convention, a person may be asked to speak spontaneously as the a speech that is delivered with surprise recipient of an award. Or a person may be asked to make a few comments at a little or no preparation346 CHAPTER 14 Speaking in Public: Speech Delivery manuscript speech community or university meeting. Making extensive comments in class can also be thought a speech that is written out word of as an impromptu speech. This type of speech is often difficult for a beginning speaker. for word and read to the audience What do you do if you are asked to speak at the last minute If possible, take a few moments to jot down the major points you wish to make, an interesting way to introduce your topic, extemporaneous speech and some way of concluding. Organizing your speech in this way will ensure that you make a speech that is written ahead of the important points. Be sure to stop when you have made your points. time but only in outline form On some occasions, speakers have their entire speeches written, and they read the speech persona to the audience. While it may be tempting to take this manuscript speech approach, it is not public identity created by a often a good idea. Rarely can a speaker read a speech and manage to make it sound natural. speaker Too many speakers sound like they are reading, rather than speaking naturally to us. Audiences generally prefer to hear from you directly, as if you are speaking from the heart. Engaging your audience with direct address, including direct eye contact, is preferable to the more distanced presentation that results from reading. However, reading a speech can be appropriate if the specific word choices are extremely important and your speech is likely to be quoted directly. Often, the president of the United States reads speeches, as journalists and others are likely to quote him and because lack of attention to word choices can create controversies. For example, in a questionandanswer session after his speech on September 16, 2001, President George W. Bush referred to the military response to September 11th as a “crusade.” His statement resulted in an immediate and strong response from some people in the audience. The Crusades of the medieval period were a significant religious conflict in which Christians left their homes to engage in battles against Muslims in the Middle East. While President Bush may not have intended to frame the military actions against terrorism as a holy war against nonChristians, his word choice—which was spontaneous rather than scripted—pointed to this interpretation. If he had been speaking from a manu script speech, he could have avoided creating this controversy. In the middle ground between impromptu and manuscript speech is the extemporaneous speech—probably the most common type of delivery. Speaking extemporaneously allows you to be a directly engaged but wellprepared speaker. An extemporaneous speech is written ahead of time, but only in outline form.; then, the speaker uses the outline as a guide. Some extemporaneous speakers may include a few extra notes in the outline to help them remember particularly important points, statistics, or quotations, but the speech is neither written out in its entirety nor memorized. By speaking extemporane ously, you will be able to better engage your audience and adapt your speech to their responses. The sample outlines provided in Chapter 13 are typical of the types of outlines extemporaneous speakers use. Projecting a Persona Your persona, which includes your personality, is the image you want to convey. If you have seen Ellen DeGeneres on her talk show, you know that she proj ects a friendly, downtoearth, almost naïve persona. She dresses informally, she jokes with her audience, and she seems friendly. Ellen’s nonverbal communi cation is very informal and relaxed. She makes direct eye contact with her audience and the television cam era; she sometimes slouches in the chair and even does a little “dance” at the beginning of every show. These elements together make up her public persona. Like talkshow hosts and other television per sonalities, speakers also adopt personas when they deliver speeches. For example, a speaker who appears As you think about your own to be confident, trustworthy, and calm may have had to create this persona and learn how public persona, watch how other to project that image. Successful national politicians work to develop personas that are public figures create their public attractive to large groups of people. President Clinton, for example, was described by personas. many—even his detractors—as both affable and engaging in public. While having aKey Issues in Effective Speech Delivery 347 Communication in SOCIETY Be Cautious with Humor Many speakers like to use humor in their speeches to keep the Understanding humor requires an indepth understanding • audience engaged and the tone more lighthearted. While of the culture. humor can be a very effective tool for keeping an audience Ethnictype humor, stereotyping, and sexist, offcolor, cul • engaged, it can also be problematic, especially when dealing tural, or religious humor should generally be avoided. with cultural issues. Here is a list of issues to consider when Political humor can be effective in certain circumstances. • incorporating humor into a speech. Knowing the type of humor your audience appreciates can • guide you. Some Basic Rules to Remember When in doubt, the safest approach is to avoid humor. • Each culture has its own style of humor. • Americans in particular begin speeches with a joke. Not all • Humor is very difficult to export. • cultures appreciate or respond to this approach. Humor often involves wordplay and very colloquial expres • Laughing at yourself often diffuses tense situations. • sions. Humor requires exceptional knowledge of a language. • SOURCE: Adapted from Cultural Savvy (2009). Humor. Retrieved September 28, 2009, from http://www.culturalsavvy.com/humor.htm positive persona can be very helpful in connecting with audiences, be careful about using humor in order to engage your audience. (See Communication in Society: Be Cautious with Humor for more on using humor in your speeches.) Humor can be very effective in setting a particular tone with an audience, but it can also ruin a speaker’s connection with the IT HAPPENED TO ME: Ted audience. The persona you choose to I thought I should always be just ‘me’ when I spoke. It seemed “fake” to try to pretend project should be connected to to be someone else. But after watching other speakers in various situations and the communication event and thinking about which ‘me’ I wanted to speak, I focused on projecting that kind of the purpose of the speech, as our persona. Establishing a persona has helped me reduce my anxiety. It is only one part student describes in It Happened of me, but it is the part I want to show the audience. It doesn’t feel “fake.” to Me: Ted. If you are speaking at a wedding, you should sound upbeat and positive and project Think about the a persona that helps the marital couple, their families, and their friends rejoice in the wed persona and the ding. Even if you have some concerns that this marriage won’t last or that the couple is public image of a getting married for all the wrong reasons, the persona you project at the wedding should great speaker you’ve not broadcast those feelings. heard. Now imagine If you have seen videos of Martin Luther King Jr. speaking, you may imagine that he that person projected a different persona when speaking to his children or a store clerk than he did on communicating more informally the steps of the Washington Monument. At home, he would likely have been more informal around a dinner table with and more relaxed with his posture and body movements, and less eloquent in his language. As you can see, creating a public persona is not a matter of falsifying who you are—it is a family, arguing with a coworker, matter of projecting a more public aspect of yourself. As you know, the self you project or talking to the cashier in a varies from context to context, but each reflects the aspects of who you are as a person. grocery store. What differences As you create your public persona, consider a few factors that influence others’ percep and similarities can you imagine tions of you. First, the speed at which you speak is one aspect of your persona. There is no between those two personas In single, ideal speaking rate. Rather, your speaking rate should vary to fit your message. For language use Body posture example, speaking slowly and deliberately can be very effective if you are speaking about Gestures Facial expressions the way someone was killed and you want to highlight the gravity of the situation. At other times, you may wish to speak more quickly—particularly for a lighter, more humorous speaking rate presentation. You may also vary your speed as you move from point to point, to emphasize refers to the speed which someone one item in particular. speaks348 CHAPTER 14 Speaking in Public: Speech Delivery vocal variety If you watch television news, you will have noticed that news broadcasters speak the variation in tone, rate, and quickly. In comparison, people being interviewed often appear to be speaking too slowly, pauses you use in speaking and sometimes the news journalists cut them off. Because of the dominance of television and the fast speech used in that medium, audiences are generally receptive to a speaking vocal projection rate that is faster than the one used in casual conversation. the relative strength or weakness You should also pay attention to your vocal variety. Vocal variety refers to the variation in of someone's ability to speak tone, rate, and pauses you use in speaking. It is important to vary the way you speak so that loudly enough for an audience in a given context you do not sound the same throughout your speech. Vocal variety will keep your audience’s interest, and it will help them stay focused on your topic. You can also use vocal variety to eye contact bring attention to particular points. If you use strategic pauses, for example, you can guide looking at someone or an your audience’s attention to specific points you wish to emphasize. Slowing down your speak audience directly, rather ing rate can also capture your audience’s attention and focus them on a particular point. than looking away Keep in mind the importance of vocal volume, or vocal projection. You need to speak kinesics loudly enough so that your audience can hear you. In large rooms with people sitting far away, nonverbal communication sent you will need to speak louder than if you are speaking in a small room to a small group of by the body, including gestures, people. If there is a microphone available, you will have to decide if you want to or need to use posture, movement, facial it. If you have difficulty projecting your voice, you may choose the microphone or stand close expressions, and eye behavior to your audience. If you have a big booming voice, you may choose to avoid the microphone. Eye contact is another important element of creating your persona. Making eye contact is one of the most direct ways to show your engagement with your audience, and it can lend credibility to your presentation as well. As we saw in Chapter 4, the norm in mainstream U.S. culture is to distrust people who do not look at us directly and to interpret this as a sign of shyness or dishonesty. However, this rule does not apply universally. Some cultures— some Native American and some Asian—do not interpret lack of eye contact this way: They often interpret it as a sign of respect; therefore, you should consider your eye contact and adapt it to the context in which you are speaking. Gesturing and movement are also a part of your persona. This part of delivery, which we introduced in Chapter 4, is known as kinesics. While you may not think that other speakers consider their movements when preparing to speak, the more natural they appear, the more likely it is that they have invested time in practice and deliberate staging. You want your gesturing and movements to look as natural as possible. If they look unnatural and too planned out, these gestures and movements can distract the audience members and focus them on your body movements rather than on your topic. However, it is not very effective to stand stiffly behind a podium. Some very experienced speakers move from behind the podium when it is appropriate to speak more directly to the audience. To ensure that your gestures and movement are effective, practice your speech (we will cover this in the next section). Remember: You should consider the persona you project even before you begin to speak. Although you may think that your delivery begins when you stand up to speak, you present your per sona well before that. In some cases, for example, speakers are part of a panel in front of the audience, or a single speaker is introduced by someone else. In both cases, the speakers are constructing their per sonas while they wait to speak. Fidgeting, rolling the eyes, yawning, chewing gum, being late, and other nonverbal behaviors mayinfluence how the audi Your nonverbal communication ence perceives you. Assume that you are “on stage” from the moment you walk into the is an important aspect of your room or come into contact with your audience until the moment you leave. public persona. One of the best ways to ensure that your speaking persona is effective is to practice your speech—the topic we turn to in the next section.Key Issues in Effective Speech Delivery 349 Practicing Your Speech One of the most effective strategies in public speaking is practice. Once your speech is prepared and once you have considered issues of delivery (anxiety, language, style, tone, visual aids, time limits, delivery methods, and persona), stand up somewhere private and speak as if you were in front of an audience. Then do this as many times as you need to in order to be familiar with your speech and feel comfortable delivering it. The bottom line at this stage is that it is essential to practice, practice, practice Practice in front of a mirror. Practice in front of friends. Sometimes it is helpful to practice the beginning of your speech, as Tamara does in It Happened to Me: Tamara, so that you can start off easily and reduce your anxiety. You want to appear confident as you speak, and confidence will come with fa miliarity. During your delivery, be sure to maintain eye contact IT HAPPENED TO ME: Tamara with your audience. This will help you connect with them as I usually practice the beginning of my speech a little bit more than the middle or you speak and will provide you end—because if I do well at the beginning, I find that after a few minutes, I feel with feedback during your confident, I get into the rhythm, and I even relax a bit. presentation, which may help you adapt accordingly. If your speech is extemporaneous, you may want to change the way that you phrase particular points each time you practice. You can try out different ways of stating or describing some topics. You can see what feels right or which examples should be changed. By practicing, you help to refine your presentation—the language and tone you will use, as well as the fine points of delivery. Practicing your speech can also help you get off to a good start and relax a little as you give your speech. As we noted earlier, practicing can help you overcome nervousness and make sure that your speech meets the required time limit. It can also help you project natural nonverbal gestures. Typically, the more familiar and comfortable you are with your speech, the more natural will be your gestures; your goal in extemporaneous speaking is to gesture as you would in conversation. When you present your speech to friends or family members, ask them to comment on your gestures and movement as well as your content. Often, new speakers engage in unconscious, repetitive movements, such as rock ing back and forth or fiddling with their hair, and they need someone to make them aware of this fact. By practicing, you can also focus on your signposting, your speech rate, and your eye contact. In other words, you can work on projecting the type of public persona you desire. Each time you practice your speech, you can focus on a different aspect—one time, your gestures, one time, just the content, and so on—until you feel comfortable with the style you have developed. Be sure to time yourself when you practice your speech. You want to have a sense of the length, in case you need to cut out something or expand on something else. Once you have practiced a number of times, you will have a very good sense of approximately how long the speech will be. Although you may practice many times, your goal is not to memorize. A memorized speech often sounds memorized, like a recording rather than a real human being. In addition, if you work strictly from memory and you stumble over a word or phrase, you may lose your place and find it difficult to resume your presentation. Instead, during practice, focus on delivering a presentation that is enthusiastic, vibrant, and engaging. Each time you practice, you may come out with different phrasing, different wording, different movements, and so on. When you give your speech, yet another version may appear, but this time, it will likely be a version you are comfortable presenting. The public speaking process involves a lot of preparation and practice to help you become a good speaker. (See Visual Summary 14.1: Key Issues in Effective Speech Delivery.) But clearly, being a good speaker involves more than just speaking. An additional key issue relates to the ethical concerns of speech delivery.Key Issues in Effective Speech Delivery OVERCOME ANXIETY SET THE TONE CONSIDER LANGUAGE AND STYLE INCORPORATE VISUAL AIDS BE AWARE OF TIME LIMITS CHOOSE A DELIVERY METHOD PROJECT A PERSONA PRACTICE YOUR SPEECH 350 VISUAL SUMMARY 14.1The Individual, Speech Delivery, and Society 351 ethos THE INDIVIDUAL, SPEECH DELIVERY, AND SOCIETY credibility Successful speech delivery is the product of careful negotiation between you (the individ artistic proofs ual speaker) and society at large. As such, it is important to strive to build ethos, or credi artistic skills of a rhetor that bility, and maintain it during your presentation. Ethos, according to the ancient Greek influence effectiveness philosopher, Aristotle, was one of three artistic proofs (means of persuasion that rely on the speaker). The other artistic proofs are pathos, or emotion, and logos, or rationality. pathos the rhetorical use of emotions to affect audience decision making Ethos, Pathos, and Logos Your ethos as a speaker is tied to your perceived credibility. Certain speakers may have logos credibility even before beginning a speech, for ethos is not merely linked to speech content rational appeals; the use of rhetoric and delivery. Rather, ethos can be connected to an individual’s identity and perceived to help the audience see the persona (discussed earlier). Family background, for instance, is a source of ethos for some rationale for a particular conclusion speakers. The Kennedys are a family who derive ethos by virtue of their familial name and longstanding celebrity in the political arena. While you may not necessarily believe the Kennedys to be the most authoritative sources on all topics, members of the family undoubtedly wield credibility because of their name. Many commercials and popular advertisements take advantage of ethos in order to sell products. Gatorade, for example, relies on Peyton Manning’s credibility as a champion quarterback in order to promote product sales. By the same token, ethos may also be harmed by public notoriety. In the wake of news of his affair, South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford’s ethos was damaged, causing significant fallout following his public apology. In a statement issued on June 24, 2009, Sanford declared, “I apologize to the people of South Carolina. There are many people out there right now who are hurt, angry and disappointed with me, and rightfully so. Over the time that I have left in office, I’m going to devote my energy to building back the trust the people of this state have placed in me” (Gov. Sanford Issues FollowUp Statement, 2009). In other words, Sanford apologized and was hoping to begin the process of rebuilding his image and his ethos. Ethos, as previously mentioned, is connected to the concept of persona that we discussed earlier. Because persona is a public identity, it is a social construction. It is a product of communication by individuals and across media. For instance, when Senator John McCain ran for president in 2008, he repeatedly referenced “Joe the Plumber” from Ohio who sought to open a small business. By citing Joe, McCain attempted to create a persona that was accessible and in touch with the needs of working Americans. McCain’s running mate, thenAlaska Governor Sarah Palin, who made repeated references to “Joe SixPack,” similarly attempted to show an interest in and connection to working Americans. While an individual may strive to present a particular persona, one he/she thinks the audience will find engaging, a persona is subject to the audience’s interpretation. It is the interplay between the individual and society that shapes how you, the speaker, are per ceived; a disconnect can occur between how you attempt to present yourself and how your audience perceives you. For instance, in response to 2008 Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin’s repeated references to “Joe SixPack,” comedian and writer Tina Fey performed a series of skits for the comedy variety show Saturday Night Live, poking fun at the persona Palin sought to convey. Ethos is also impacted by the way the speaker presents information to the audience— that is, through organization or logos, or rationality. A logosbased approach capitalizes on highquality information to build a compelling argument. When giving a speech on the dangers of processed foods, Jasmine, a public speaking student, announced that according to the American Heart Association and the Centers for Disease Control, approximately 145 million—almost 35 percent—of adult Americans are overweight (Statistics you need to know, 2009; U.S. Obesity trends 1985–2008, 2009). Using these and other striking statistics that connect diet to the rise in obesity, Jasmine used logos to make her point about the impact of processed foods on health (Processes foodsthe cause of obesity, 2006). When an argument is presented in a way that is logical, it becomes accessi ble to audiences. The use of logos, in conjunction with ethos, can be particularly powerful352 CHAPTER 14 Speaking in Public: Speech Delivery in an informative speech setting. When used effectively, an audience will develop a deep understanding of the topic. The third artistic proof, pathos, is typically most effective in persuasive settings and will be discussed in greater depth in Chapter 16. SPEECH DELIVERY AND ETHICS Consider the following advice for delivering an ethical speech. Use Language Sensitively Avoid language that denigrates, demeans, or devalues other people and other topics. If it is not relevant to your speech topic, you should avoid using pejorative terms that are likely to offend others. This ethical guideline includes words that you know would be offensive in referring to other people by race, gender, sexuality, religion, and so on. Using such terms can turn an audience against you and your ideas rather quickly. Even if no members of a particular group are in your audience, others may find derogatory references offensive. Derogatory language does not only apply to people, but also to cultures, countries, and historical events. As an ethical speaker, be sensitive to your use of language. Use Visual Aids Carefully When you use visual aids, consider the ethics of the visual images. What kinds of images might distract the audience from the point of your presentation Or turn the audience against you For example, some protesters have used photos of aborted fetuses. Is this ethi cal Some photos show President Obama with a Hitlerlike moustache. Is this appropriate and acceptable There is no clear rule regarding appropriateness, but some images may be considered unethical by some audiences. You should consider the ethics of any visual aids you use. Respect Time Limits Respect the time limits you are given when you speak. In some situations, this is an ethical concern. For example, at many city council meetings, a number of people may wish to be heard on a particular topic. If you are on a panel of speakers, you should not speak longer than you are expected to speak. If you do go over your time limit, you are taking away time from other speakers. If you take too much time, one or more of the other speakers may not have the opportunity to speak, and you thus undercut the public deliberation at the city council meeting or other venue. SUMMARY Delivery is often viewed as synonymous with public speaking itself. Although delivery is only one part of the speechmaking process, it is a very important part. As you saw from Mia’s personal experience at the beginning of this chapter, delivery can make a big impact on an audience in ways that you may not intend. Also important to delivery are overcom ing anxiety and setting the tone of the presentation, which includes thinking carefully about your language use and the style of your presentation. If you use visual aids in your presentation, incorporate them in a way that does not distract from you or from your topic. You will also need to choose a delivery method, determining whether the presenta tion calls for impromptu, extemporaneous, or manuscript delivery. Also, consider the persona that you want to project by paying attention to your public image, and be aware of the time limits set for the presentation. In order to perform at your best, you must practice, paying attention to your signposting, your delivery, and your overall style. Finally, speakers must uphold a level of ethics in their delivery by not using language that denigrates others, choosing visual aids with care, and respecting time limits.Web Activities 353 KEY TERMS appropriateness 340 impromptu speech 345 precise language 340 artistic proofs 351 jargon 342 speaking rate 347 clarity 340 kinesics 348 style 339 communication apprehension 336 logos 351 stylistic devices 342 delivery 336 manuscript speech 346 tone 339 ethos 351 metaphor 342 visual aids 343 extemporaneous speech 346 pathos 351 vocal projection 348 eye contact 348 persona 346 vocal variety 348 hyperbole 342 CHAPTER REVIEW QUESTIONS 1. What is the appropriate tone for your presentation How 4. What are the guidelines for using visual aids in a speech do you know 5. Why should you pay attention to the time limits of a 2. What style should you strive for in your presentation speech How might you craft that kind of style 6. What are some ethical considerations in delivery 3. What are some stylistic devices you might use in a speech ACTIVITIES 1. Look for an announcement about a speaker on campus. speeches and focus on the delivery of the speakers. In this Go to the presentation and focus on the delivery. What did kind of setting, what do you notice about the delivery and you notice about the speaker’s delivery and style What style of the speakers things did you see that you would like to emulate in your 3. Learn about techniques for dealing with communication own speeches What things did you notice that you would apprehension. Do library research as well as interviews. like to avoid in giving speeches Find out how others deal with their anxieties. Identify 2. Attend a political rally of any kind you like—TEA parties, some techniques that will help you deal with communica antiglobalization, health care reform, and so on. Watch the tion apprehension. WEB ACTIVITIES 1. Go to www.youtube.com and type in the name of a them, which ones do you find interesting and helpful speaker. Watch his or her delivery and think about what Which ones have you heard speakers use you might emulate, as well as what you might avoid. 3. Go to www.whitehouse.gov and watch President Obama’s 2. Explore a number of rhetorical figures at: http://www.uky. weekly address or any other speeches. What do you notice edu/AS/Classics/rhetoric.html. As you look through about his delivery and language use
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