Toastmasters Speech 2: Organize Your Speech

by Andrew Dlugan
Apr 29th, 2008

When you speak, does your audience get it?
If your audience doesn’t grasp your message (even though your topic is one
you know they are interested in), you need to rethink the way you present it. You need
toorganize your ideas to promote understanding.
The second Toastmasters speech project addresses organizing your speech. This article of
theToastmasters Speech Seriesexamines the primary goals of this project, provides
tips and techniques, and links to numerous sample speeches.
The Toastmasters Speech Series

The Ice Breaker


Organize Your Speech


Get to the Point


How To Say It


Your Body Speaks


Vocal Variety


Research Your Topic


Get Comfortable with Visual Aids (coming next)

and the next begins. there is often little in the way of transition phrases that link the speech together in a cohesive unit. who. a 15 minute business proposal. Who builds ODP? 67.  I previously discussed several speech outline examples in detail. and punctuation provide  cues to the reader that help them understand the macro-organization. Inspire Your Audience Why is This Speech Important? There are four aims for this speech: Use an outline which aids understanding. In a verbal speech.  Craft an effective speech conclusion.  Transition smoothly from one point to the next.” (this leads naturally into the “who”) 3. I chose The Open Directory Project (ODP). and why of ODP. Large – 4. Persuade With Power 10. In a written piece (like this article). But.9. appropriate transitions are most lacking in the majority of presentations that I have seen. Most speakers have an introduction and conclusion. with supporting material arranged in some form of outline. bullets.  Craft an effective speech opening. Transition: “Something this large doesn’t just spring out of the earth. What is ODP? 1. What I Did for Speech 2 For my second speech topic. These are fundamental skills that you apply to every speech you’ll ever deliver. Someone has to build it. 2. Opening – State topic: the what. or a 60 minute keynote. Volunteer demographics .5 million sites 2. whether it is a 2 minute off-the-cuff speech. Internet Directory (compared to a telephone book to aid understanding) 3. use pauses and transition phrases to achieve this effect so  that the audience knows when one point ends. headings.000 volunteers! 1. Transitions are the Key Of the four elements. Here’s a brief outline and the key transitions I used: 1.

 Principle 1: Practice Perfect Performance  Principle 2: Visualize the Result You Desire  Principle 3: Get Out and See the People  Conclusion: restate three principles This speech was especially strong because of a consistent pattern that was used for each of the three points. and then summarize in your conclusion. Her basic structure is:  Opening: “20 pounds and nine years ago. Why is ODP important? 1. Data complements results of Google and other search engines 5. Anyone can join 2. you begin by stating a premise in your introduction. “I hope this talk has whet your appetite to find out more. The pattern applied was: . Chronological 3. Data is free 3.000 people to volunteer their time?” (this leads naturally into the “why”) 4. along with a parallel structure. I was a dancer…” which leads into stating 3 dance principles which help in real estate. Conclusion – Summary of 3 main points. 1.2. Transition: “What inspires 67. The Classic “Three Supporting Points” 2. Topic Ideas for Toastmasters Speech 2 Select a straightforward outline to organize your speech: 1. Example: Maile provides an excellent example of clear and parallel structure for a speech with How Dance has Helped Me In the Real Estate Business (video). support it with three reasons or three supporting points in your body. and a call-to-action to check it out. Geographical Idea #1: The Classic “Three Supporting Points” In this outline.” This was a reference back to the speech title: A Taste of ODP. It doesn’t need to be 3 points. Volunteer roles 3. but this is a convenient number that fits well with a five to seven minute speech.

Measure. and explicitly saying “These are the cougar qualities and the reason I want to be a cougar.” Idea #2: Chronological A chronological outline is appropriate for many speeches that describe a sequence of events.  Definition of a cougar. Idea #3: Geographical . The Toastmaster evaluation of this speech (video) is also available.  Introduction to Jack Welch and origins of Six Sigma  Definition: What is six sigma?  List the 5 Stages: Define.  Transition: “So. Control (and then stepped through each stage with explanation)  Conclusion to reinforce importance of Six Sigma Note his transition phrases which give a direction or imply a sequence (“… from there. Improve. Analyze. Her basic structure is: Open with a surprising revelation: she wants to be a “cougar” when she grows  up. It is also appropriate for describing a process or a step-by-step technique. we…” or “… after analyzing. we…”). and the speech is very easy to understand. why do I want to be a cougar when I grow old? My first reason is…” Reason 2: Confidence   Reason 3: Aggression    Transition: “Confidence is another quality …” Transition: “Aggression is another cougar characteristic…” Conclusion: Sums up speech by reiterating the three reasons. Example: Brian demonstrates this technique with a speech about Six Sigma(video).  Reason 1: Fashion. Transition: “the second principle I’d like to share…[name principle]“  Lesson from dance: “… as a dancer… [explain principle in dancing context]“  Relate to real estate: “… this technique has also served me well in the real estate arena… [explain principle in real estate context]“ Maile used this parallel pattern for all three points. Example: Tanya Huang also demonstrates this classic method in a speech titledCougarlicious (written).

A geographical outline is a convenient method to organize a speech about travels. More Examples of Organize Your Speech Here are a few more sample written and video speeches which may provide inspiration for you. German pastries vs. Example: Elizabeth Mitchell uses this method in Seven Lessons from Seven Continents.g. “My second continent…”) clearly mark the boundaries for each of the seven segments of the speech. The Ice Breaker 2. the introductory words for each segment (“My first continent…”. Get Comfortable with Visual Aids (coming next) 9. Get to the Point 4. Inspire Your Audience Video Speech Examples  Videoblogging by Stephanie Bryant  37. Dutch pastries).g. French pastries vs. Persuade With Power 10. How To Say It 5. Vocal Variety 7. Research Your Topic 8. Of note. pastries) across many locations (e.5 Hours by an unknown speaker . Your Body Speaks 6. or where you are contrasting your topic (e. Written Speech Examples  Scotch by Chris Lee  Democracy! God help us by Seamus McInerney What’s in a Name? by Amit Bhatnagar  The Toastmasters Speech Series 1. Organize Your Speech 3.