Peter Urs Bender   Previous Page  |  Next Page

The 80/20 Rule

You should spend eighty percent of your preparation time on
delivery and only twenty percent on determining the content
of your speech. Sound surprising! Not really. Because you are
already an expert on your topic, the outline and relevant points
you present should be fairly obvious to you.
     However, a confident and professional presentation style
will take some effort. Do not spend all of your time on content!
Work not on what you will say as much as how you will say it!
If you are not 100% familiar with your topic, though, the
proportion of time required to master content will increase.

Writing a Draft

Define your purpose, assemble ideas, facts, anecdotes, and
statistics around your topic and develop your outline. For first
time presenters only, you might want to develop a draft of your
speech, including key phrases that you find particularly effec-
tive. Do this even if you intend to speak without notes.
     Writing a draft will help you to clarify your ideas and the
style in which you will convey them. Do not worry about
perfection. Not yet!
     Write your draft as quickly as possible and revise it later.
The point is to get all of your ideas down so that you can analyze
and refine them. While many of the world’s most famous
speeches were given extemporaneously, eloquence is guaran-
teed if you prepare the thoughts you will use in advance.

Rehearse By Reading Your Draft Aloud

Read aloud through your draft several times, looking for
phrases that can be improved and big words that can be



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