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Category Archives: The Power of Organization

Types of Speeches: The Information Dump

Types of Speeches: The Information DumpIf you decide to become a professional speaker or use speaking as an integral part of your marketing strategy, it’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with the various types of speeches you might be asked to give. In this series of posts, I’ll give you the basics on a variety of types of presentations you can prepare. At the end of this post, I’ve listed previous articles in this series.

What is the information dump?
O.K. I’m not really condoning an information dump here. What I’m referring to is the informational speech, a speech that informs the audience on a specific topic.

You are not training them to do something, you are simply informing them. You see these kinds of speeches at symposia, conventions and other gatherings where speakers are there to share knowledge, not sell you something.

How do you prepare an informational speech?
The key to doing an informational speech well is often in the organization. The flow of facts and information must appear logical to the audience, often building one upon the other.

Let’s say I wanted to give an informational speech on the origins of the Lilith myth (I just learned about it in a book I read recently and was fascinated!). This is how I might organize it:

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The Power of Organization

Have you ever listened to a presentation and at the end wondered what it was all about? More than likely the speech was disorganized and the lack of organization left your brain no logical pattern to follow.

Without the Power of Organization supporting you and your presentation, you run the risk of:

  • Making points out of order.
    Many topics need the audience to understand point A before they can comprehend point B. You’ll find yourself saying something to the effect of, “let me back up a moment here ….” That not only wastes precious time, but it will also causes you to lose a significant portion of your audience.

  • Rambling on and on with no purpose.
    Organization not only helps the audience follow what you are saying, but also helps you remember what to say! If you can remember the basic organization of your speech, you can quickly and more easily recover from bloopers.


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Public Speaking Tip #5: Choose Content You’re Interested In

Back in 1994, I took a Television Production Workshop at Santa Rosa Junior College. To pass the class, I only needed to create one 7-minute video. I ended up producing a 27-minute introduction to Toastmasters, a quick skit video and a music video. What can I say, I think big!

Anyway, this week’s video tip … and the next two … is excerpted from For the Love of Public Speaking, the longest project I did in that class.

The information in this video is targeted to people who are just starting in Toastmasters, which is why I mention a short presentation time and a wide selection of topics. But the basis of what I’m saying applies to anyone who wants to make public speaking a part of their business, as well.

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The 5 Ws and an H of Public Speaking

questionsIn any presentation, there are basic pieces of information that an audience expects to receive from the presenter. You are the problem solver presenting a solution that will benefit your audience.

Even if you are just blessing the newlyweds at your best friend’s wedding, you still have questions that must be answered. These questions are the classic five Ws and an H: who, what, when, where, why and how. Read on to better understand what I mean.


Who is your target audience? What would they like to know about your topic? Do they have any preconceived notions about your material? What are their concerns? Are you addressing the “who” you targeted in your research?

When you address the “who” of your message, you are better able to relate with your audience. They will feel like you are speaking directly to them. They will give you their attention because they feel like their needs are being addressed.

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