Think before you speak

By: Mandy Bowling

Chapter Four, of Management Communication, James O’Rourke focuses on how to give a proper and successful management speech. There are many ways to deliver a speech, but it is important to focus on the factors that make a speech a good one. According to O’Rourke, the best way to do so is to develop a strategy to give the speech. You can start the strategy by making sure you know who your audience is, figure out what the purpose of the speech, know that the people want to hear and organize your thoughts and ideas so it doesn’t seem like you are just rambling on. Begin with an introduction, get the structure of the speech figured out, find a way to properly present the speech and then conclude the speech. Being organized is important because if we practice speaking, and we find ourselves having to give a last minute speech, we know what we are in for and know how to prepare.  

Getting nervous can be a big flaw of giving a speech. That is another reason why it is important to have an outline and to have practiced your speech. Sometimes when we get nervous, we stutter and loose our food for thought. It can come across very clustered and unorganized. In my opinion, being organized and having a thought out structure is importnat for cases like becoming nervous, which causes people to loose their train of thought. 

Speaking is a part of everyday life. In the work place, depending on where you work, giving a speech of any kind, can be pretty common. Working in athletics, there are many times we have staff meetings for different events. For example, this coming weekend is HUGE for SFA athletics, we have every fall sport competing Thursday-Sunday. We had a meeting yesterday that was last minute and the event manager, you could tell knew what he needed to say, but didn’t really have his thoughts organized. Different departments were brought in to discuss this weekends events, and the more the meeting went on and he talked about the events, he became a little flustered and began asking a lot of questions, instead of telling everyone the purpose of the meeting and what the plans for the weekend was. 

It’s important to grab people’s attention and keep them focused on the purpose of the meeting. Asking questions is a good idea, when it’s the right time, but sometimes its important to have an outline, with times and contact information, etc., and then open up the floor for questions after you deliver what is planned on being said.

Giving a speech is important, and I believe that if the event manager was a bit prepared, the speech would have been more effective and presented more clearly. 

By mandybowling

One comment on “Think before you speak

  1. Something to keep in mind is that when “thinking before we speak” is that we if we practice our speech and go through it a few times for preparation, we should not be afraid to change it. Quite often I have been in a position while presenting for a group presentation where the finished result isn’t quite what we expected it to be in the beginning. If this is the case, don’t be afraid to make alterations so that the original point you are trying to communicate is not “lost in translation.”

    Justin Saunders

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