What is the best structure for a speech?

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What is the best structure for a speech? – is something I’ve spent quite some time contemplating recently. Is it best to stick to a rigid, tried and tested structure for each speech, with a clear beginning and ending, or should you try and break the mould?

Contemplating this has probably created more questions than it has answered. Questions such as ‘is there really such thing as speaking ‘best practice?’ and ‘is public speaking really just as subjective as art?’.

Such questions could be a whole evening of conversation for a group of keen speakers and might even have some not-so-keen speakers in deep contemplation too – what are your thoughts on this?

So has something useful come of my pondering? I hope so – over the next few weeks I will be trying to define what ‘should’ be done in different types of speech. For example, best practice and tips and tricksĀ for technical presentations or good structure practice for an inspiring speech.

Over the next few weeks i’ll post thoughts on what should be included for each type of speech here and I would really appreciate everyone else’s input. I’m sure I couldn’t possibly cover everything and it may be that you have learnt something original about speaking that could really do with sharing with the world – please do share it here!

Look out for tips on technical speeches, tips for inspiring speeches, tips for speaking to persuade others, tips for speaking to inform, tips fo facilitating discusion with your speaking, tips on speaking to entertain, tips on speaking at special occasions and more in the coming weeks!

Wow, I’d better get writing!

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Rich Watts is the UK Business Speaker of the Year and a past JCI National Public Speaking champion. He setup and now runs Rich Public Speaking providing presentation skills and public speaking training.

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