Being able to deliver extempore is a public speaker’s strongest weapon! Coming up with material to talk, without preparation, or any script is truly a remarkable feat.
Many business leaders, famous academicians, politicians and world leaders have been able to speak spontaneously when asked, and given us some of the best lines in history!
Yet, unscripted and spontaneous does not mean unstructured! Let us understand what are the tips one must keep in mind while preparing to speak extempore and make sure we apply these successfully!
Imagine that extempore speaking is like an Auto Rickshaw! I know, hard to imagine, but bear with me!
Like any Auto-rickshaw, this form of public speaking is built on 3 wheels and can function smoothly only when all three wheels are aligned and of equal size!
The 3 Wheels of Extempore Speaking
Understanding the relationship between the various parts of speech (prepositions, adverbs, conjunctions etc), Subject-Verb Agreement and keeping track of the popular slang helps everybody with their fluency. Remember, fluency is not limited to grammar. Practising to speak in the language is as important as grammar.
A Fluent speaker of the language is never afraid to make mistakes, as they can easily recover without getting conscious of a little error made. recovering from an error is not difficult at all! Simply repeat the sentence correctly, excuse yourself and MOVE ON!
Never try to talk about thing you do not have any idea about. Limit your extempore to the fact that you possess and go on. If for any reason, you are not familiar with the topic in depth, talk about what you understand about the topic.
A very important lesson people forget while preparing to speak is to LISTEN! Preparation for any topic can only happen when you have understood the topic correctly, and that is only possible when you LISTEN to the topic given and the instructions provided!
The last wheel on this Auto-rickshaw is Structure. An extempore speech can be on any topic and for different time spans. The structure of any such speech is like a skeleton. The content acts like the organs and fluency acts like its muscles.
Any extempore speech should be structured in a way to maximize efficiency and effectiveness. The following structure is one of many to ensure the best results.
- Opening- Always try opening your extempore by grabbing the attention of the audience. A smart line, pithy observation or famous quote that is relevant is always a winner.
- Facts- Try sticking to 2 to 3 facts so that your extempore is not crowded, confusing, boring or hard to remember. Be SPECIFIC regarding the things you speak about. Being generic and talking, in general, is quite boring for the listeners. There will be no reason for the audience to remember you!
- Anecdote- An anecdote is a short account of a particular incident or event, especially of an interesting or amusing nature. Adding a personal touch to your extempore always makes you more relatable. How the topic affected you, or how it might affect you, makes the audience understand the topic faster!
- Closing- Ending with a bang! Let the earlier points you have made lead to the conclusion. Too many points can dilute the impact of your speech! Use Pauses to highlight the points and lead up to a great opening!