It is understandable to be nervous when giving a public speech; most people experience a small amount of fear before taking the stage, which quickly becomes anxiety and panic once they are in front of a large group of people. If you are new to public speaking, this is normal.

However, it is important to note that you should continue to develop your skills when it comes to speaking in front of others, and you must exert sufficient effort to achieve the desired confidence level. After all, having authority and establishing the credibility of your speech is the key to true victory in public speaking.

Public speaking is feared by over 70% of the population. This results from a lack of confidence. Or, sometimes, fear knowing that you are speaking in a group of people. Glossophobia, or fear of public speaking, is very common throughout the world. Are you one of them?  There's no need to be worried because this article will teach you how to speak with authority.

What Is Authority In Public Speaking?

First, what is authority in public speaking? When we think of authority, we usually think of someone who has the power to rule over others, such as the President of a country. In the field of public speaking, authority has a different meaning. Having the power to take the stage and be the person to whom the audience will listen is what authority in speech entails. 

Developing an effective authority in public speaking gives you the right to be believed by the audience. The moment you step on the stage, you already have complete authority. It decreases when you lose confidence while speaking as a result of fear. Hence, fear should not prevent you from asserting your authority in public speaking. 

How to Establish Credibility in a Speech?

According to communication scholar Stephen E. Lucas, your audience will evaluate the credibility of your speech based on the following factors: Competence and character. The former involves assessing your knowledge, intelligence, and competency on the topic. In contrast, the latter assesses your sincerity, genuineness, and trustworthiness.

To establish credibility in a speech, never begin with your topic without first introducing your character. Give your audience a brief overview of your experience and why you are the best person to discuss the subject in front of them. Furthermore, you must engage your audience and use this to create a sense of connectedness that you share similar beliefs and values.

Finally, speak eloquently, sincerely, and with appropriate confidence. When you do it this way, your audience will believe you are the most qualified person to discuss the subject. Avoid ambiguous statements and keep everything to the point. As a result, you will have excellent credibility as a public speaker.

Tips For Presenting With Authority

Tips for presenting with authority

Now that you know what authority and credibility are in the perspective of public speaking, let's go over these key tips on how to present with authority.

1. Take Your Time

Being a good public speaker does not depend on how quickly you can speak in front of an audience. For example, former President Barack Obama's speech is naturally slow when it comes to speaking. Nonetheless, the entire message is clear and meaningful. This enables him to draw people's attention and control the situation. 

Speaking too quickly indicates nervousness. When nervousness is noticeable, the audience could act as if they are not listening by avoiding looking at you. They do this so you will go back to your comfortable state.  You would then lose your authority in that case. 

Public speaking is not a competition of who finishes first, but rather, who can instill a memorable message to the audience. If you are speaking too fast, the whole speech is ruined. Instead of finishing early, focus on your message and how to effectively deliver it.

2. Know your topic

You can say that you know your topic well if your message leaves no room for rebuttal, and you can deliver it without fear of being questioned. Knowing your subject also makes it easier to recover if you make a mistake. This recipe is essential in public speaking because everyone is susceptible to mistakes every once in a while like forgetting your lines and your mind going blank.

Once you stumble, you will lose the authority you are trying to establish. However, if you can easily recover from switching to a different elaboration stage, your authority may be stronger than expected.

3. Avoid filler words

Almost everyone uses this every day. Most people are guilty of using filler words, which is entirely fine. However, keep in mind that public speaking is not the same as everyday conversation.

You must then speak eloquently to establish effective authority. The primary reason people use fillers is that it is uncomfortable to be silent for a few seconds. Excessive filler words can be annoying to some, but you can do something to prevent this. 

Instead of using "um, uh," substitute different words such as "you see; now; but; nonetheless," etc. This enables you to appear professional and prudent in front of your audience. As a result, your authority grows as they pay closer attention to you.

4. Don't fear silence 

This is with the previous tip. Most public speakers are conditioned to speak smoothly and fluently, to the point where there is no silence or blank space when they speak. This is admirable, but it is also dangerous. When someone speaks fluently and an unfortunate circumstance pressures them to stumble, they may panic.

This is because silence is regarded as a sign of error. But, it was all in your mind when you think about it, and the audience didn't even notice. When you show signs of panic, your authority is rendered ineffective. Don't be afraid of the power of silence; instead, use it to sound more relaxed as you continue to speak. 

5. Smile

One of the most important factors to consider is your facial expression when you speak. Remember that your facial expression is a form of body language. Everyone can tell whether you are nervous or not. You should be upbeat and relaxed to display a genuine smile to your audience as you speak. You cannot greet each person individually if you speak in front of 1,000 people.

Show them a smile and make them feel welcome to listen to your presentation as a sign of respect and gratitude. Most effective public speakers never fail to smile at their audience before, during, and after their speech. It is also a good way to establish authority so that your audience will listen to you.

6. Use Humor

When it comes to public speaking, having authority means eliciting positive responses from your audience on everything you say. Your method of connecting with the audience and allowing yourself to maintain control of the situation is through this method.

If you include some jokes and humor in your speech, your audience will be more entertained, and they will want to hear you speak again in the future. In this particular instance, you have simply succeeded in establishing your authority.

7. Use words accordingly

Delivering a speech entails selecting the most appropriate words for the situation and the industry in which you work. When it comes to fashion, you cannot use legal jargon such as "jurisdiction," "negligence," "torts," "damages," etc.

Instead, you must use jargon in keeping with the current fashion trend. Your audience may feel sick while listening to you because they will not be able to comprehend your statements completely if you use unrelated words. When it comes to public speaking, it's important to use appropriate vocabulary to maintain your authority.

8. Tell a story

 You must be familiar enough with your topic to be able to relate it to a specific event in your life. There is no way that no one in your audience can relate to you; there will always be someone who can. Even if most of them cannot relate, it tickles their interest in the possibility that the same thing could happen to them. Whether it is a positive or negative experience, always take advantage of the opportunity to relate to one another.

When a public speaker establishes authority by telling a story, a round of applause usually follows. Just make sure the story you're going to tell is relevant to the topic. Your public speaking authority will be rendered pointless if you tell stories that have nothing to do with the topic.

9. Don't doubt yourself

Self-doubt is a mental poison that makes you believe you can't do something. True, establishing an effective authority in public speaking takes effort. Still, it is easily achievable if you have self-confidence and determination. When your mind is filled with doubt, you become conscious of everything that will undermine your authority. It's as if you're allowing negativity to eat you alive.

To successfully establish your authority, always imagine yourself as the most powerful person in the room. The spotlight is on you; stand like a champion. Your responsibility is to deliver an outstanding speech that they will remember for the rest of their lives. Let go of your self-doubt and concentrate on conquering the stage.

Establish An Effective Authority In Your Next Speech!

Take note of all the tips for presenting with authority in your next speech. When you speak in front of the audience inside the room, you should act as if you are the ship's captain, controlling everyone's attention. It is necessary to establish a strong authority in public speaking. Without the authority of speech, there can be no effective communication.

We hope this article helps you discover your hidden talent as an authoritative speaker. Public speaking is a learned skill, not an innate talent. Continue to improve every day!

For more resources to develop your public speaking skills while you are in the comforts of your own home, please check out the article ‘Online Resources for Public Speaking‘. If you would like to leverage the best presentation software for your next big speaking engagement please read the article 'Best Presentation Technology tools'.


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Posted in  Presentation Tools and Topics   on  January 7, 2022 by  Dan W ,   The Top 9 Tips For Presenting with Authority

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