Impromptu: The Spontaneous Weapon!
Updated: Nov 17
What is Impromptu Speech?
Before going deep into impromptu speaking, eBright will first give you a brief definition and understand on this topic.
Have you ever attended a meeting or an event where you were asked to fill in or take the place of another speaker? That is when impromptu speaking takes place.
Impromptu speaking is a speech and debate individual event that involves a five- to eight-minute speech with a characteristically short preparation time of one to seven minutes. The speaker is most commonly provided with their topic in the form of a quotation, but the topic may also be presented as an object, proverb, one-word abstract, or one of the many alternative possibilities. While specific rules and norms vary with the organization and level of competition, the speeches tend to follow basic speech format, and cover topics that are both humorous and profound.
Impromptu Speech usually is something that most student is afraid of because of the preparation time. But disregarding the timing part, impromptu speech is one of the best ways for student to improve their public speaking skill and their critical thinking skill.
It is a skill that everyone can benefit from. It can help you in social situations such as weddings and birthdays or even business!
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We’ll begin by identifying several impromptu speaking opportunities. In our daily life, there are many opportunities that require us to have impromptu speaking such as business meeting or even your school club meeting. In the meeting, your president or the person in charge might want to hear the members or workers opinions. That is the time when you will be called and voice out your own opinions without given much time of preparation. Well, if you’re alert enough, you might have 5 to 10 minutes time of preparation that is when your boss starts to call names, you take the time when other people were speaking to do your preparation. Besides, your everyday interactions with people around you can make you practice impromptu speaking too. When you interact with your neighbors, teachers and friends, you might need to come out with impromptu topics to continue to conversation or just to keep the conversation interesting. For example, if you’re talking with someone you respect, you’ll definitely try your best to keep the conversation going and interesting. That is the time for you to show your impromptu speaking skill. You’ll come out with topics and different ideas in your conversation in a short period of time because if not, awkward silence might occur and that for sure, you would love to avoid it.
Moving on, there are some techniques that can be picked on to manage last-minute speeches. The first approach comes with a simple formula which is the 4 letters word: PREP. PREP stands for Point, Reason, Example, and Point again. It is the most handy way when you want to prepare for your speech in a short period of time. Pin-pointing your main idea is very important when you want to give a speech. After knowing your point, think of a reason for it then continue with an example. The example is for your audience to understand your point and reason better as well as bring life to your story. Lastly, come up with a concluding point that wraps up your speech. This will help you to prepare a clear and essential speech in a short amount of time. To beautify your speech, you can even add some pros and cons about the topic that you want to talk about before giving your own recommendation. Pros and Cons method is always something that can be used in any topics.
One more situation that will make you have butterflies in your stomach is when you have to fill in the place of other speakers. The one thing that you have to do first when you face this situation is understand the situation from someone that knows. After understanding the situation, you can start off by sharing your own personal stories such as why you come to this event or meeting. Maybe you have just come out of a traffic jam, you can even share that too. Next, encourage some questions and answers session. This will help you to feel more at ease and comfortable to deliver your speech.
Lastly, time for you to deliver your speech! There’s no time for you to practice so practice in real-time. Deliver your speech to the audience as it is just one of your practices. Don’t stress and just try to have some fun when giving your speech. Most people will applaud at your courage and willingness to stand in. Don’t fake things, just be yourself and honest to the audience. Keep in mind that “it’ll all be alright”. Bare in mind to the avoid rambling and draft out an outline before you go on stage.
By understanding and following all these steps, you’ll find that impromptu speaking is actually not that scary. You’ll be a great impromptu speaker in no time!
Remember, All’s Well, Ends Well!
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