Standing up to give a speech can be a daunting experience for many of us. It is cited as one of the top human social fears. We look for excuses to avoid doing it. With over 90 years of experience Toastmasters has developed proven techniques to teach people become not just good but great speakers.
We all encounter encounter public speaking situations every day such as introducing ourselves at a party or giving directions to a complete stranger on the street. Professionally we might have to share our opinions at meetings, ask questions, deliver presentations, do job interviews or give a sales pitch. Many of us try to avoid these situations when we can. If we have a tendency to be an introvert the problems can even seem worse.
Overcome Your Public Speaking Fears
We learn public speaking from childhood, adopting communications skills through social interaction with families, schools, communities, friends and in professional life. But we may still be nervous, afraid or lack self-belief. It is possible to improve however, by learn public speaking and leadership techniques.
Good Speakers Become Great
Paris Speech Masters is an English-speaking Toastmasters club of 25 members representing more than 15 nationalities. Members come from all walks of life not just French but expatriate professionals living in Paris. Members share a common desire to improve their skills, to practice giving different types of speeches in a friendly and safe environment, learn from each other but also get spontaneous feedback and detailed evaluations. The club strives to live up to its motto : “Where Good Speakers Become Great”.
A Typical Meeting Includes
- Opening: Welcoming guests and members by the club president.
- Education Session: Joke, toast and a short speech from a member about a particular speaking or leadership technique
- Table Topics: Impromptu speeches of one to two minutes on a topic chosen by the Table Topics Master.
- Prepared Speeches: Three members give a speech (five to seven minutes) from a selection of 130 different types of speech and presentation projects.
- Evaluation Session: Members evaluate the three speeches plus there is a general evaluation of other parts of the meeting.
- Closing: Club news and guests might be asked for their impressions of the meeting.
Public Speaking Tips
- Always have a message that is specific to that particular audience
- Decide what you are aiming to achieve with your speech (inform, educate, inspire, persuade…)
- When preparing a speech you need to think of performing, exercising (mind and body) and anticipating
- Speech evaluations focus on positively improving speech structure, content substance and delivery style of the speaker
- Your speech is more effective if you are using your whole body not just saying words
Celebrate Five Years at Paris Speech Masters
This year the club celebrates its fifth anniversary in June. As an Expatriates Magazine reader you are cordially invited to join members and other guests in the celebrations on Monday, June 20, 2016. The only cost is 15 euros to pay the restaurant for a meal and drinks.
To find more about the club and register to attend its next meetings go to the Paris Speech Masters website at www.parisspeechmasters.com. You can also email the club directly at email@example.com
To find out which of the 18 Toastmasters clubs are near you in Paris and Ile-de-France search on www.toastmasters.org/Find-a-Club
Finding a Copy of the Magazine
My article was published in the June 2016 issue of the Expatriates Magazine. You can pick up one of 6,000 published copies in various locations in Paris and Ile-de-France. Click on Expatriates Magazine Distribution Points to find the nearest one to you. (This photo on the left shows the stand at the American Church in Paris containing 1,000 copies of the magazine). You can download the PDF of the complete June 2016 Expatriate Magazine Issue.
If you would like to have a feature article published about you or your professional activity send me an email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Rob Sitbon, Rebel Cat Productions (Sean Ryan profile photograph in article and front cover)
- Gabriella Benko, Paris Speech Masters Club Photographer (two club members’ photos in the article)
- Kevin Knight, Editor-in-Chief, Expatriates Magazine (front covers and article)
About Sean Ryan, Public Speaking Coach & Trainer
Sean Ryan is a bilingual English and French public speaking coach and trainer. He works with executives, senior government officials, professionals, entrepreneurs, students and young people to help them understand their existing good strengths and to become great speakers. Typical coaching includes interpersonal communications, job interviews, media interviews, panel discussions, presentations, keynote speeches, startup pitches, debating, product launches, personal branding, professional networking and workshops.