I settled down last night to have a quick look at the Academy Awards, the Oscars – not at the dresses – although they were outstanding, not at the handsome actors – although they were ….. – no I was looking at the acceptance speeches and seeing if the winners have been applying some basic effective public speaking techniques – know your audience, know the time and respect it, be concise, coherent and confident and make that connection with the audience and appropriate to the occasion.
So how were those acceptance speeches? Who won the best acceptance speech on the night?
Some general comments:
Genuine and authentic speeches are powerful. If you come across authentic it will connect with the audience and will cover any issues with speaking techniques – passion and authenticity will get you a long way.
Being concise and adhering to time ensures that you look professional and allows you to complete your speech covering all your points effectively without leaving anything out .
Some great short speeches indicated how well you can get your message across concisely and still have an impact.
An indication of how you can make your speech effective by thinking outside the box is the acceptance speech that was done in rhyme. Well done it stood out from the other speeches. Be aware that done well these speeches are great but when not done well they can be a disaster. Not everyone has the skill to do these type of speeches.
If you can add humour to your speeches it enhances that connection to the audience. There were some great examples of humour in some of the acceptance speeches.
How many times can you say thank you in one short speech? Short though a speech may be it is still most effective if it has structure. A list of names and the word thank you several times is not very effective.
Know your audience – it can be risky alienating 50% of your audience with adverse comments. Be mindful of the audience and mindful of the occasion.
There is a fine line between emotional connection to your audience and being overwhelmed by the emotion. To be most effective you need to express your emotions and share them with your audience without becoming too emotional yourself. If you let yourself get too emotional, this can cloud your wonderful message and connection.
Watch the ums – vocal pauses for thought. Occasions like acceptance speeches where the emotion is flying and impromptu speaking comes in, are breeding places for vocal pauses for thought. You are reaching for the next word and it can be very easy to have that um appear. Whilst the occasional ums do not impact – many ums in a short space of time can impede the wonderful words and message you want to share.
Choose your words wisely – words can have a variety of meanings to different people. Choosing the correct word for your message can make the difference between a good speech and an effective great speech.
When you only have 45 seconds to speak – you need to be concise, coherent and clear. In that time you need to be able to thank those you want to and show your appreciation – doing this means you have succeeded. If you can make it memorable or different then you have been outstanding, memorable and an effective communicator.
A short comment on introducing a speaker: a very good tip is to know who you are introducing and to practice pronouncing their name. Introductions are mini speeches and should be structured with as much thought as any speech or presentation. Download Trischel’s free tips on “Introducing A Speaker” http://bit.ly/1dOHJ0Pfor more information.
So who gets my award for the best acceptance speech of the night:
Out of the box done effectively goes to :
Acceptance speech for “Let it Go” Best Song – Robert Lopez and Kristen Anderson-Lopez
Not easy to do a speech in rhyme and to do it effectively.
Best Acceptance Speech:
Matthew McConaughey – Best Actor for Dallas Buyers Club
This was a concise well structured, brilliant speech delivered with humour, clarity and easy to follow. I especially liked the 3 things he talked about – 1. Someone to look upward to, 2. Someone to look forward to and 3. Someone to chase. I liked how he built around those his thanks and also loved the quote regarding “respect others and you will respect yourselves”. The speech left us with memorable quotes that stayed in the mind. Well done.
Remember next time you have to get up to do an acceptance speech or presentation or introduction be concise, clear and confident, watch the time, be aware of the audience and the occasion and SHINE!
Trish at Trischel