Giving a speech on a community-building project is a great opportunity and also a great responsibility. It’s one of the most difficult tasks, but also one of the most rewarding when it goes well.
Whether your speech is aimed at potential investors or to recruit new members, you need to be persuasive to grow your community.
I’ve given speeches in the past on various community development projects I’ve been involved in, and giving a speech is a development process that requires good communication skills and organization.
Like giving any other speech, representing a community organization requires good public speaking preparation.
It’s important to get it right because it means that your community members, your colleagues, stakeholders, other community leaders, and audience members are relying on you not just to give a speech, but to make a positive impact and bring about social change.
Communication Is Key When You Are Giving a Speech on a Community Building Project
Whether it’s about civic engagement in a global or local community, a nonprofit organization, large or small businesses, or a high school, a speech requires excellent communication skills.
Here are a few examples of speeches about community building projects:
Sales Presentation to Obtain Funding
In this speech, you tell people how their community involvement helps your community’s needs and why they should give you their money.
It’s important that they understand that donating to your community organization means you will both be working together toward a common goal, even if the goal isn’t exactly the same on both sides.
For example, if you’re giving a speech for your community to create jobs for youth, your potential investors need to see a business or economic opportunity for your speech to influence their decision-making.
Community Involvement & Community Service Recruitment
Whether your speech is aimed at international or rural communities, adults, or youth, building relationships with your audience during your talk is critical to your community engagement. If you have an engaged community, it’ll be easier to gain credibility and attract new members or even get people to apply for volunteering opportunities.
Telling the story of your community project is what community leaders often do.
You tell how and why your idea came to be, what its initial community needs were, what pitfalls and successes there were in the development process, how you engaged community members and stakeholders, what you accomplished, and how it had a positive impact.
For example, if your community focuses on youth development, share how it brought about social change for youth.
Stories are very effective in public speaking because good stories tell of strengths as well as weaknesses. This is important for gaining credibility and a good way to engage citizens by telling them what they can do to change their community for the better.
Why Community Building Speeches Succeed or Fail
The success of a project often depends on the people who help set the direction, funding, and overall vision. If you are giving a speech on a community-building project, you need to understand the motivations of these individuals.
People are motivated by different things, which is why some people place more emphasis on building relationships while others place more emphasis on results. Your speech should cover both aspects if you want it to be effective.
A speech needs to have a little something for everyone. It must be interesting and relevant to the audience. It must be delivered with confidence and conviction. And it must have a positive impact, whether it changes the listener’s mind or simply makes them think about the topic in a new way.
To be successful at a speech, you don’t have to be a professional speaker. You need good communication skills to know your topic. Your preparation is one of the most important parts of your speech.
When giving a speech, you must appear confident and find a good balance between nervousness and arrogance (too much confidence could be perceived as arrogance). Community leaders are expected to inspire and motivate their listeners by speaking with passion, enthusiasm, and excitement. Preparation is a crucial step.
When preparing a speech on a community-building project, it’s important that you know what you’re talking about and that you research how to explain the project in a way that audience members will understand.
If you want to make public speeches, you must know how to prepare. You shouldn’t give speeches unless you’re prepared to put in the necessary effort. There are a number of things you need to do when preparing for public speaking.
Know Your Goal
The first step in crafting a great speech about a community-building project is to understand why you’re giving the speech in the first place. Whether you’re advocating for a cause you believe in or trying to convince your audience of your point of view, you need to make sure your goal is clear and that it relates to the issue at hand.
Connecting your purpose to the issue will also help you decide which point of view or argument to make. In other words: What do you want your audience to think or feel after your speech?
Once you’ve decided on the main point, you can start planning the rest of your speech. This is where structure comes into play. Having a clear plan of what you want your audience to think and feel will help you develop a logical structure for your speech.
Research the Topic
Researching the topic of your speech first will help you in many ways. When researching, make sure you’ve enough information about the topic and not just a few. Also, make sure that your speech has a clear focus.
Make sure it’s written properly.
Don’t just copy lines from a book and say them out loud, because that will make a negative impression on your audience and it’ll look like you didn’t put any effort into writing your speech yourself.
It’s important that you know your topic inside and out. If you aren’t prepared, people will see through you and it’ll affect your credibility. The best way to prepare is to do thorough research beforehand. You should also have one or two key points that you want people to remember.
Some people find it useful to take notes, others prefer not to because they feel it limits their speaking.
The most important thing is that you feel comfortable with what you’re saying.
Learn From Other Speakers in Your Industry
If you’re going to give a presentation on a particular topic (eg: economic development, community service, rural communities, etc.), it can be helpful to see how others in your industry have handled it. They’re sure to have good tips for you on how to improve your presentation.
It can be helpful to find out how people in other fields present their information.
You may not be able to apply what you learn directly, but you can get new ideas on how to prepare the material and make it interesting for your audience, which is key to a successful presentation.
Know Your Audience
One of the most important aspects of being a successful speaker is knowing your audience. You need to tailor your speech to them.
Presentations are aimed at a specific group of people (eg: local leaders, local government, young adults, etc.) . If you know who’ll be in attendance and what their interests are (eg: local resident opportunities, high school, global economic development, community service, etc.), you can tailor your speech to them. You can also select the main types of citizens you want to address in your introduction and conclusion.
Ideally, you’ve met some of them before or at least know something about them, such as their background, interests, or profession. What’re their motivations? What do they like and dislike? What do they want to hear? These questions need to be answered before you start writing.
If you don’t know your audience, talk to someone who does, or interview members of the group before the speech.
Know Your Core Message
Your audience will take away from your speech what you tell them they’ll take away. It’s important that they understand what you’re getting at. Make sure you have a clear message that everyone can easily remember, and stick to it throughout the presentation.
Have a Clear Structure
Your speech should have a clear structure. This makes it easier for the audience to follow your key points and understand the message you want to convey. When writing your speech, you should first formulate your main idea in a single sentence.
Make sure that everything you say supports that main idea. Your main idea should relate directly to your audience and the event, so take plenty of time to think about it.
Have an introduction and an ending that connects all the points well. If your speech is logical, i.e. flows from one point to the next and is logically linked to other points or ideas of the topic under discussion, your audience will benefit from it.
The best way to develop this main theme is to think about what you want your audience to take away from your speech after they hear it.
Try to write down some keywords or phrases that you want them to remember afterward. These can be practical tips or inspirational ideas that will help them in their own lives or work. Once you find these keywords, write them down on a separate sheet of paper in the order you want them to appear in your speech. This will then be your outline for the speech.
When you write down your speech, start with an introduction that will pique people’s curiosity and make them curious about what’s coming next. You may also want to share a joke or personal anecdote here if it fits the theme and tone of your speech.
Use Visual Aids
Visual aids can boost your confidence when speaking in public.
There’s a saying that a picture is worth a thousand words. A picture means more than just something to look at.
It can help you remember what you want to say or give you an example of something you may not have thought of.
For example, if you’re talking about a local resident in New York (United States) who’s made a difference in his neighborhood, you should show a picture of him in New York in your presentation so that people will feel that he’s real when you talk about him, and it’ll remind you at what point you should talk about him.
Trying to remember everything on the spot can be stressful, especially when you’re speaking in front of others for the first time. If you’re able to create a visual aid that explains what you want to say, it’ll keep you from forgetting things.
When you create a visual aid, it’s important to use simple and easy-to-understand images and diagrams. You want your message to get across, so try not to make it too complicated or confusing.
You should also use different colors and fonts so they stand out and grab everyone’s attention. Different colors will help keep everyone focused on the main topic and not distracted by a particular color that stands out to them.
If you’re using PowerPoint, Keynote, or other software, make sure the content for your presentation is already loaded. If you’re planning to use visual aids, you should find out if it’s allowed beforehand. Make sure all equipment (projector, microphones, etc.) is working before the presentation begins.
Practice Your Speech
If you’re nervous about speaking in front of an audience, try to imagine that your audience is coming to hear you speak. Remember that they probably have no idea who you’re, so don’t worry if they aren’t overly excited when you walk into the room. Remembering these things will help you relax and make it easier to deliver your speech.
By recording yourself on your smartphone, you can get used to how you’ll look when you give your speech and memorize the key parts when you watch it again. This way, you can get used to your body language while giving the speech, and it’ll be easier for you to relax and focus on the right words.
If possible, practice your speech in front of others. The more often someone hears a speech, the more likely he or she’s to remember it. Ask friends or family members to help you practice, and listen to their suggestions on how to do it better.
If you want to give a good speech about a community-building project, you should first think about what makes you stand out in your job – how hardworking you’re.
Work on Your Self-Confidence
A confident speaker can motivate and inspire the audience – whether it’s a single person or an audience of thousands. If you’re not confident, it can be hard to muster the courage to speak in public. But if you work on your confidence, it can help you give a great speech about a community-building project.
A less experienced speaker or a young person may worry about what’ll happen if they forget their lines or stumble over words. This is normal and to be expected. A little nervousness can be good for the right amount of adrenaline.
More experienced speakers may have trouble even getting up to speak, or they may have trouble delivering their words with the right enthusiasm.
Bringing the Audience Along
The purpose of a speech is to get a message across. This can be done in many different ways. You can use humor, stories, statistics, or facts to grab the audience’s attention and make them listen.
The success of your speech depends largely on how you deliver it. The first step to a successful speech is to prepare for the speech itself by thinking about what you want the audience to take away from the speech.
When deciding on your message, you must keep in mind that people learn in different ways. It’s important to craft your message so that it reaches the different types of learners.
Before You Deliver Your Speech
When you’re ready to give your speech about community building (or whatever topic you’ve chosen), it’s important to relax. If you focus too much on your speech, other activities may overwhelm you.
A day or two before your speech, it’s important to relax. Keep yourself busy with other things, because if you focus too much on your speech, it can overwhelm you. Get together with friends, exercise or meditate, watch a comedy – anything that will take your mind off the event.
The night before the speech, write down all the information you need to remember for the next day. This includes any notes related to what you’ll be saying and where the items you’ll need are located on stage or at the podium (if it’s a big event). It’s also helpful to make a list of the times of certain events during the presentation so you won’t feel embarrassed if someone calls you on it.
Make sure you aren’t hungry or tired. If necessary, sleep in and eat a filling meal before giving your speech.
Don’t go on stage with a full stomach, but go to the bathroom several times before you give your speech. This will prevent you from being distracted by discomfort during your presentation and allow you to focus on what you’ve to say.
On the Day of Your Speech
The day before you give your speech, eat breakfast or lunch at least an hour before your performance.
Wear clothes that you feel confident and comfortable in and that won’t distract others. Also, take a glass of water and something small to eat – this will help you keep your energy up during the presentation.
Be aware that you’ll probably be nervous before you give your first speech.
When you’re in front of an audience, always remember that they’re on your side and rooting for you – even if it’s not always obvious from their reactions. If you take a moment to calm your nerves and focus on what you’ve to say, not how you say it, you’ll become more confident with time and experience.
Remember that there’s no such thing as a perfect speech – only good speeches. And the only way to give a perfect speech is to practice until you can give it perfectly every time. When giving a speech for the first time, don’t expect perfection; instead, strive for progress and improvement.
During Your Speech
When you give your speech, speak confidently and make eye contact with the audience. Smile often to show that you’re relaxed, but avoid smiling too much or laughing at your own jokes; this can give the impression that you’re taking what you’re saying less seriously.
Remember to breathe deeply while you speak so you don’t get out of breath or wind. Also, make sure you don’t speak too quickly; this can cause people to not understand what you’re saying and therefore not listen.
Remember that while your speech is a presentation, it’s more of a conversation than a typical business presentation, so keep your audience in mind and adjust your tone accordingly.
If you want to emphasize a point, ask a question or make a comment that gets the group thinking. This will make the group members feel more involved in the discussion and have something to talk about later in their offices.
Remember that you’re one of the most important members of your community and that’s why you’re giving this speech. You should lead by example and show what it means to be a good community member. Community members should know that they can count on you when they need help or support.
Prepare for any questions that may come from the audience during the speech.
Being prepared for possible questions and having answers ready will help you deliver your speech more confidently. Also, be prepared that you may not know all the answers and that’s okay because you can’t know everything.
At the End of Your Speech
At the end of a speech, a good speaker always thanks his/her audience for being there.
When you thank your audience for listening to you, you also have the opportunity to say how honored you’re to be standing in front of them at the podium. At this point, you can even emphasize what brilliant questions they asked during your speech.
It’s also a good idea to repeat some of the key points from your speech. This helps to summarize things while providing a point of reference for anyone who wasn’t present for your presentation.
Also, it would be a great gesture on your part if you could give them useful information or refer them to someone who can give them more information on the topic you just talked about.
Remember that it’s not just the content of your speech that matters, but how well you deliver it. That’s why it’s important to prepare for your big day and leave a lasting impression on people!
After Your Speech
If you have the opportunity to engage in conversation with your audience after your speech (e.g. networking, tea break, etc.), it’s always good to show that you care. Here are some things you can do to impress your audience and leave a good impression.
- Always thank the organizers for inviting you to speak at their event. A thank you note on social media is usually appreciated by the organizers as well.
- Smile as you personally greet each audience member (if possible). To most, you need to shake hands and say, “Thank you for coming” or “It was a pleasure to meet you.”
- Don’t refer to your speech unless someone mentions it, because you don’t want to come across as “self-centered.”
- prepare a 10-20 second personal message for each of the event organizers thanking them for inviting you to speak at their event (if possible). This is how you make a personal connection with the organizers and leave a positive impression on them.
- Try not to just walk by people who’re trying to strike up a conversation with you, but stop with them and make small talk if possible. If you’re in a hurry, it’s best to go out the back door.
It’s hard to follow up on a speech if you don’t record it. If your speech was recorded or written down, you should go over it thoroughly to find out what went right or wrong. For example, to find out how well the speech was received by the audience.
How to Improve Your Next Speech
The key to getting the most out of your speech is to take something away from it. You can get more out of your time by taking some notes and using them as a foundation for future speeches. Here’s what to look for:
What did you say was most impactful? What was the overall impact of your speech? Did people start their own communities? Did they sign up to comment on posts? How did they respond to specific points you raised?
What worked, what didn’t, and why? What would you do differently next time? Use this feedback to make your next speech even better.
You can use SurveyMonkey or another survey tool to capture the results of your speech in detail. This is especially useful if you did a community-building activity; otherwise, it’s just good practice. You can also see some responses to your survey on the organizer’s social media page in the comments section.
The Key to Success
Good preparation is the key to a successful speech. When you’re preparing to give a speech, there are a few things you can do in advance to make sure it goes well, like the steps above.
Most importantly, be passionate about what you’re doing to get better results.
Make sure that you’re constantly learning from your mistakes so that you can constantly improve as a leader, even if you aren’t perfect. If you’re honest with your mistakes, you can always improve as a person and as a community builder, especially if you can learn from your mistakes and improve.