Public Speaking Tip #7: Develop Good Presence

Here is the third and final installment of excerpts from For the Love of Public Speaking, a 27-minute introduction to Toastmasters I produced during a Television Production Workshop at Santa Rosa Junior College in 1994. This week I cover “Presentation.”

The information in this video is targeted to people who are just starting in Toastmasters. But the basis of what I’m saying applies to anyone who wants to make public speaking a part of their business, as well.

Take distractions in stride.
Don’t let interruptions and distractions throw you off. If they aren’t too big, you can safely ignore them … such as kitchen sounds in a restaurant. If they are pretty distracting, acknowledge them.

I’ve seen speakers thank the laughter from the room next door; laugh at a broken heel, take of her shoe and move on; and crack jokes about how to really screw things up you need whichever piece of technology was malfunctioning.

Fake it until you make it.
I’ve mentioned this before: Pretend you aren’t nervous, and soon you won’t be. This really works! I promise.

Use gestures strategically.
Be aware of how you use your body. Use gesture to accent and add emphasis to your points. Be aware of body language that distracts from your message.

Dress appropriately.
This may sound strange coming from someone whose motto is “Life is too short for uncomfortable clothes,” but the advice in this video is still pretty good. You want to dress appropriately for your brand, your message and your audience. This can be a delicate balance, but when done right can add weight to your presentation.

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Do you have questions about public speaking? Just ask and I’ll answer in a future public speaking tip video. To learn how you can submit your public speaking question, go here.

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About the author

Carma Spence, is author of Public Speaking Super Powers. She is fiercely committed to guiding women to Owning their Superpowers and turning their knowledge and interests into a profitable business. She is masterful at helping her clients see what is possible for them and supporting them on the journey from where they are to where they want to be, releasing the Mind Goblins of self-doubt, self-sabotage and second-guessing that keep them stuck.

With 20+ years experience in marketing communications and public relations, natural intuitive skills and certification in using some of the most effective transformational coaching tools available, Carma’s mission and commitment is to unleash the inner power every woman entrepreneur possesses so they can boldly go out into the world, transforming the fabric of people’s lives in meaningful and positive ways.

You can find her on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. Her website is

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