One of the things I love about my job is the incredible variety of people and subjects I am exposed to on a daily basis. Whenever I am helping someone write a speech though, the questions are very similar:

  1. How am I going to present all this information in my 20 minute presentation?
    2.  How am I going to talk for 45 minutes?
    3.  What if I lose my way?
    4.  If I can’t read my speech, what can I do?

This is where you’re ‘prepared plan’ comes in.

This is the second last step of your presentation preparation, the last step is of course, practice!


Already you have:


  1.  Started to get your nerves under control
  2. Decided on your ‘Umbrella Statement’ objective
  3. Researched your audience
  4. Produced a mind map and developed your topic
  5. Included elements of persuasion
  6. Thought about PowerPoint and how you will use it
  7. Brainstormed potential questions the audience may have and prepared a response


So, you know your topic and you’re feeling pretty confident about the delivery – now all you need are a few notes to help keep you on task and on time.
A prepared plan provides you with the safety net of having notes, whilst ensuring you deliver a presentation using communication skills that will provide maximum engagement.


Your prepared plan notes for a 45 minute presentation may well look something like this:


10am Introduction
10 Second Gab
Why this topic is important
10.05am Body
Point 1 – Make it stick with a story
Point 2 – Build your argument
Point 3 – Bring facts and stats to life
10.35am Conclusion
Conclude with passion
What is it you want them to remember?
Have a call to action
10.40am Finish


Make sure your notes are in point form, double spaced and a size 18 font so you can read them easily from a distance. Holding onto your notes cramps your delivery and it will show in your body language, voice and ultimately your confidence.

Try and condense your speech on one or two pages only. Why? Because they sit nicely side by side on a lectern and you won’t need to touch them.
Most people fear running short with their speech. I feel it is better to run slightly under time than feeling rushed to fit in everything you want to say. (No one ever received a standing ovation for going over time!) But practice to find out what works best for you.
Once again, like the first time you rode your bike without training wheels, this will take a little getting used to – but once you’ve mastered it, you’ll never deliver a speech the old way again!

Sharon Ferrier

Sharon Ferrier

Sharon Ferrier, through her business ‘Persuasive Presentations’ consults to organisations and individuals who have a need to improve their communication, presentation skills and confidence in public speaking.
Sharon Ferrier

All Good Presentations Start With a Confident Speaker

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