CGM blog: Five top tips for the perfect speech

Delivering a powerful public speech doesn’t have to be the equivalent of anaesthetic-free dentistry. Not if you plan it right and stick to some simple tips.

Here are CGM managing partner Chris Green’s five top tips to delivering the perfect speech.

Say something simple…

..and think big. Too many speech makers try to achieve too much. Keep to one main theme and/or one big message and work your thoughts around that.

Everything then is new for your audience and if you lose your thread, you can easily move on. You’re providing ideas to support a central theme, not lots of unhinged titbits that fail to say anything useful.

Man walks into a pub…

Tell a story, set a scene, create an analogy or a context your audience can project their imagination onto. You don’t need too many stories but certainly tell tales will help your speech… just don’t make them tall ones. Keep it real and make it relevant.

Plan it and mind map it

Writing anything down in simple linear fashion is boring and therefore hard to memorise.

It is much easier to mould a rounded view of your speech and visualise it with triggers such as colours or images that break down organically like branches off a main tree trunk (your core message).

Sub-branches are smaller points you want to make within the branches so your whole speech is grouped together and interconnected naturally. 

Condense it

Make it personal. Don’t try to recite long tracts of speech verbatim. You’ll never memorise it and it is boring.

Instead, cram your thoughts into a few key words to trigger off sections of your speech. That way, you can maintain eye contact with your audience (they’ve come to see you, not your notes) rather than constantly staring downwards at a lectern you’re clinging onto. 

Practice make perfect

A cliché I know, but true. Only idiots think they can constantly ‘wing it’. I rehearse speeches when I’m out walking and other places where I can’t readily refer to notes. Oh, and I time it too – and go over it until I get it right.

Does this help? If so, why not learn how to put all these tips and more together in a one-day public speaking course with Chris Green Media.

Our next Public Speaking for Business course is on Friday, June 22, (10am-4pm) and will enable you to deliver a confident 10-minute note free speech or business presentation.

One week later, confidence is the theme of our Business Media Club meeting on Friday, June 29 (9.45am-12.30pm) at the CGM Media Centre in Worcester – which is about how to allay fears to develop the perfect pitch.

To book and for further information click on the event titles above or email CGM at