Most Common Mistakes in Writing Speeches

Most Common Mistakes in Writing Speeches

Writing a speech is an interesting assignment, but it has its own traps and possible pitfalls. To avoid them is a task of any speechwriter, even if you are only a freshman. Use our tips, and you will feel much more prepared for dealing with this task.

Most Common Mistakes in Writing Speeches

Mistake #1. Mixing Goals with Means

The purpose of the presentation (for example, to sale the project) is often confused with the main idea of ​​the speech/report. That is, the thesis and the goal are mixed in the speaker’s head in some kind of symbiosis. Speech suffers from this, and you get far from your cherished goal. For example, the goal is to sell the project. The main idea is that with your project someone will be able to earn a certain amount. Evidence – the project is already profitable and will grow. It operates in a rapidly developing market, but competition is still weak. Mention that you have a strong team that can work efficiently and competently.

Mistake #2. Not Defining Goals at All

It’s important to spend a few minutes thinking about what you want to achieve with your speech or presentation. The goal is also defined by the character of the work you want to present. It is obvious that the goal of the speech in front of the thesis committee differs from the goal of the speech given in front of the potential investors. Don’t think that “to make a good speech” is a perfect universal goal — it is a weak goal which shows you want to get rid of this task as soon as possible.

Mistake #3. Neglecting Your Audience

If you were making a speech in front of the mirror, it would be far more comfortable, but it is not the point. You have to define your audience, analyse it, make conclusions and adjust your speech accordingly. Define the gender, age, professional characteristics, etc. It will help you understand which type of speech you should make, which jokes you can and can’t use, which examples to employ, etc. You digital presentation in Prezi might be incredible, but if the audience is very conservative, neither your presentation nor your speech will gather sympathy and attention.

Mistake #4. Neglecting Time Limit

Mostly you know in advance the time limit for your speech. See it not as a vague recommendation, but as a “must.” Your speech should be several minutes less than required, but only several minutes. This way you will have some “safety” extra time in case something goes wrong with technical issues or people want to ask long questions. When writing a speech you should consider not the time one needs to read it, but the time one needs to tell it, with all those pauses, water drinking, maybe applaus, etc. It means you should rehearse the written speech while writing it, not only after you are done.

Mistake #5. Forgetting About the Text’s Proportions

Unfortunately, sometimes even the the best speech writers from professional services forget that everything in the speech should be in balance. They write an extremely long introduction, and then a speaker has no time to come to the conclusion, or the introduction and the body part are very short, but conclusions are extended exceptionally and bore everyone. The best ratios are: 25-50-25, 20-60-30 and 20-60-40 if the findings are truly important. It actually doesn’t matter which ratio you choose from the listed above, as all of them are pretty balanced and will be beneficial for your speech.  

Mistake #6. Not Preparing to Answer Questions

Many of you may think that it is more about the presentation not writing a speech. Maybe, but not completely. When writing a speech, you should underline phrases and ideas which according to your believe will provoke questions from the audience. Write those theoretical question down and after you are done with the speech itself try answering all of them. It will help you look professional and engaged.

Writing a speech is a difficult task, and the best speechwriters receive salaries which we can only dream about. It means that avoiding mistakes in speech writing may help you in making a successful career. Try your best and you will be satisfied with the result. Good luck!

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