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Presentation skills: Why you should consider using a full manuscript

Presentation skills: Why you should consider using a full manuscript


Why should you do all the work of preparing a full manuscript for your speech?  Wouldn’t it be easier to “wing it?”

Here’s one compelling reason: CEOs of top corporations pay freelance speechwriters $3,000-$7,000 and more to write a speech.  They wouldn’t repeatedly do this unless they saw substantial gains on their investment.

Truth: a well-written speech manuscript delivers a powerful punch.

Here are important advantages:

  • Guaranteed time frame

You don’t need to worry about running over your allotted time.  To determine the time for a manuscript speech, do this:

1)      Use your computer to get the total number of words.

2)      Divide by your rate of speaking.  For clear speech, this is likely to be about 100-110 words per minute.  For some, it will be 90 to 95 words per minute.

3)      Rehearse your speech and get a time so you’re as accurate as possible for the time length.

  • Clear and focused message

A manuscript will prevent going off topic or being too wordy, making a stronger impression.

  • Get it all

Is there anything worse than realizing after a speech that you forgot to say your most important point?

  • Ease of delivery

Having a manuscript is calming.  You don’t have to worry about “going blank.”

  • Accuracy

Avoided misspoken statistics.  Your speech is your first impression.  Flubs in statistics give a bad impression.

  • Precise, powerful wording

Here’s the inside story of President Ronald Reagan who was praised as “the Great Communicator.”  That skill was apparent only when he used carefully scripted manuscripts. Otherwise, he often misspoke.

  • Subtle meanings and nuances

Prevents poorly chosen words which make accidental meanings.

  • Flexibility

You can add extemporaneous comments.  Skilled speakers regularly make last minute comments to add spontaneity.

  • Professional appearance

Influential people hire speech writers to gain an advantage in communicating. You can rely on a well-written manuscript to gain that advantage.

  • Greater credibility

A manuscript communicates authority.  Fact is, the audience knows you did your homework.

  • Appropriate humor

Avoid the off-the-cuff jokes that might hurt your career or alienate your audience.

Next time: The Silent Moment that Packs a Punch

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Be sure to watch our English Speech Tips videos and Accent Reduction Tip videos  for more English pronunciation and accent reduction exercise.

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