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How to make an Impromptu Speech

How to make an Impromptu (On the spot) Speech

Impromptu Speaking

Impromptu speeches should follow the general rules of public speaking – i.e. they should have form and not ramble.

The opening must lead into a reasoned discussion of the topic.

The discussion must lead the speaker and audience to some definite conclusion. Arguments should be backed by examples.

The conclusion should follow on from statements in the body of the speech.

In your approach choose to speak on one of the following aspects:

  • WHO personal story
  • WHICH an event
  • WHAT explore the topic in general terms HOW explain a process
  • WHEN past and present stories
  • WHERE place or location
  • WHY reasons or causes – discuss

Use simple direct language; don’t risk losing the thread of your argument.

Always let the audience know where you stand.

Select a key word and build it into a key theme. Most good impromptu speakers dwell on personal experience.

Don’t waste time trying to make up your mind what to talk about.

Decide quickly on one point and then set out to develop it.

Practise making speeches about everyday themes and develop the knack of being able to speak at the ‘drop of a hat’.

Have some basic themes ready at all times. Most impromptu speeches are made at social functions and your preparedness will build up your confidence and gain you recognition as a good speaker.

Accomplished speakers can handle the impromptu talk well. They have made so many prepared speeches that they can readily draw upon this store of experience to make some apt remark.

Adapted from How Do I? Australian Rostrum Council