7 tips to develop your public speaking and communication skills

Communication represents the process through which the sender transfers messages to a receiver through various channels (writing, gestures, sounds, words). It’s pointless to say how important it is to communicate efficiently at work or at home. It’s not always easy however, especially when addressing a larger number of people. Here are a few tips that should help you develop your public communication skills:

  1. Confident attitude. Your audience will feel your confidence, and so will you. Having a confident attitude will make you speak confidently and will add credibility to your message.
  2. Body posture. You should face the audience in an open, relaxed posture. Stand straight or, if you choose to walk do so slowly, relaxed.
  3. Make eye contact. Eye contact is important because it makes your audience pay attention. When talking to a group of people, never stare at the ceiling or out the window. If looking them in the eyes makes you nervous, look somewhere just above their heads. They will be under the impression you’re looking at them.
  4. Speak slowly. If you’re speaking too fast, people might have problems keeping up with you.
  5. Alternate the tone you are using. Highlight important parts of your presentation by changing the tone of your voice. You can also change the tone of your voice from time to time. A monotonous presentation will usually make people pay less attention to the message.
  6. Use words you’re familiar with. Don’t try to impress those in the audience by using words the meaning of which you don’t know for sure. It’s easy to compromise your credibility. Keep the language simple and the phrases short.
  7. Use gestures. Communicating is easier if you use your hands as well. Use slow, open, and friendly gestures. Keep your hands open, and don’t raise them above shoulder level. Also, make sure your hands are not covering your face and mouth.