CREATING THE INTRODUCTIONPRESENTER: DINH QUOC MINH DANG
CREATING THE INTRODUCTION The introduction of your speech establishes your relationship with your audience, make the introduction suitable for particular audience. Although your introduction may be very short, it should gain the audience’s attention and motivate them to listen to all that you have to say. An introduction is generally no more than 10 percent of the length of the entire speech, so for a five-minute speech, an introduction of about 30 seconds is appropriate.
CREATING THE INTRODUCTION An effective introduction achieves three goals: Gains attention, Points out how your topic is relevant to the listener, Reveals your thesis statement (specific speech goal and main points). In addition, effective introductions can help you begin to establish your credibility, set the tone for the speech, and create a bond of goodwill between you and the audience.
GAINING ATTENTION An audience’s physical presence does not guarantee that people will actually listen to your speech Your first goal is to create an opening that will win your listeners’ attention by arousing their curiosity and motivating them to continue listening.
GAINING ATTENTION Although your introductions are limited only by your imagination, use several techniques to get your audience’s attention and also to stimulate their interest in what you have to say: 1. Startling statements 2. Rhetorical and direct questions 3. Jokes 4. Personal references 5. Quotations 6. Stories 7. Suspense
STARTLING STATEMENTS A startling statement is a sentence or two that grabs your listeners’ attention by shocking them in some way. Because they were shocked, audience members stop what they were doing or thinking about and focus on the speaker.
RHETORICAL AND DIRECT QUESTIONS Questions encourage the audience think about something related to your topic. Questions can be rhetorical or direct. A rhetorical question seeks a mental rather than a direct response. Unlike a rhetorical question, a direct question demands an overt response from the audience, usually by a show of hands. Direct questions get audience attention because they require a physical response.
JOKES A joke is an anecdote or a piece of wordplay designed to be funny and make people laugh. To get audience attention, a joke needs to meet the “three-r test”: it must be realistic, relevant, and repeatable.
Rhetorical and Direct Questions A rhetorical question seeks a mental rather than a direct response. Unlike a rhetorical question, a direct question demands an overt response from the audience, usually by a show of hands.Direct questions get audience attention because they require a physical response. However, getting listeners to actually respond can sometimes pose a challenge.
Jokes A joke is an anecdote or a piece of wordplay designed to be funny and make people laugh. To get audience attention, a joke needs to meet the “three-r test”:it must be realistic, relevant, and repeatable (Humes, 1988). In other words, the joke can’t be too ar-fetched, unrelated to the speech purpose, or potentially offensive to some listeners. Be careful with humorous attention- getters—and consider how you will handle the situation if nobody laughs.
Personal references A personal reference is a brief account of something that happened to you or a hypothetical situation that listeners can imagine themselves in. In addition to getting attention, a personal reference can engage listeners as active participants.
Quotations A quotation is a comment made by and attributed to someone other than the speaker. A particularly vivid or thought-provoking quotation can make an excellent introduction to a speech of any length, especially if you can use your imagination to relate the quota- tion to your topic.
Stories A storyis an account of something that has happened (actual) or could happen (hypo- thetical). Most people enjoy a well-told story, so a story can make a good attention getter. One drawback of stories is that they can be lengthy. So use a story only if it is short or if you can abbreviate it to make it appropriate for your speech length.
SuspenseTo create suspense,you word your attention-getter so that it generates uncertainty andexcites the audience .A suspenseful opening is especially valuable when your audience isnot particularly interested in hearing about your topic.
Establishing Listener RelevanceEven if you successfully get the attention of your listeners, to keep their attention you will need to motivatethem to listen to your speech. You can do this by creating a clearlistener relevance link, a statement of howand why your speech relates to or might affect your audience. Sometimes your attention-getting statementwill serve this function, but if it doesn’t, you will need to provide a personal connection between your topicand your audience.→ When creating a listener relevance link, answer these questions: Why should mylisteners care about what I’m saying? In what way(s) might they benefit from hearing about it? Howmight my speech address my listeners’ needs or desires for such things as health, wealth, well-being,self-esteem, or success?
Stating the Thesis Because audiences want to know what the speech is going to be about, it’s important to state your thesis, which will introduce them to the specific goal and main points of your speech
Establishing Your Credibility If someone hasn’t formally introduced you before you speak, the audience members are going to wonder who you are and why they should pay attention to what you have to say. So another goal of the introduction may be to begin to build your credibility.Remember that your goal is to high-light why you are a credible speaker on this topic, but not to imply that you are theory even a final authority on the subject.
Why ?Even if you successfully get the attention of your listeners,to keep their attention you will need to motivate them to listen to your speech. ATTENTION
How ? a clear listener relevance link = how and why your speech relates to or might affect your audience.By attention-getting statementBy providing personal connection between your topic and your audience
E.GNotice how Tiffany created a listener relevance link for her speechabout being a vegetarian by asking her audience to consider thetopic in relation to their own lives: Although a diet rich in eggs and meat was once the norm in this country, more and more of us are choosing a vegetarian lifestyle to help lower blood pressure, reduce cholesterol, and even help prevent the onset of some diseases. So as I describe my experience, you may want to consider how you could alter your diet.
When creating a listener relevance link, answer these questions: • Why should my listeners care about what I’m saying? • In what way(s) might they benefit from hearing about it? • How might my speech address my listeners’ needs or desires for such things as health, wealth, well-being, self-esteem, or success?
STATING THE THESIS Presenter: Huu LocIt’s important to state your thesis, whichwill introduce them to the specific goal andmain points of your speech.
Stating main points in the introduction is necessary unless you have some special reason for not revealing the details of the thesis. To make your topic into a thesis statement, you need to 1. make a claim about it, make it into a sentence. Look back over your materials (free writings, investigative notes) and think about what you believe to be true. 2. think about what your readers want or need to know. 3. write a sentence, preferably at this point, a simple one, stating what will be the controlling idea of your paper.
ESTABLISHING YOUR CREDIBILITYIf someone hasn’t formally introduced you beforeyou speak, the audience members are going towonder who you are and why they should payattention to what you have to say. So another goalof the introduction may be to begin to build yourcredibility.
1) Dress appropriately for the situation.2) Show your confidence.3) Share your personal experiences.4) Pronounce all your words correctly.5) Give evidence that supports what youre saying. Remember that your goal is to highlight why you are a credible speaker on this topic, but not to imply that you are the or even a final authority on the subject.
Tone refers to the mood or feeling the speaker creates. Sometimes the tone is set by the occasion. For example, speaking at a wedding and speaking at a funeral require different tones, and these tones are determined more by the situation than by the speaker. In other situations—such as speaking in front of a city council to praise them for making a courageous decision about building a new library or park or criticizing them for doing so during a time of tight budgets => the speaker has the ability to set the tone.
When a speaker rallies a crowd at a protest, the speaker has tremendous power to set the tone—as Martin Luther King Jr. often did, so that the crowd was incited not to do violence but to protest nonviolently. In these cases, the speaker may have an ethical obligation to consider the consequences of setting different tones for an audi If you are smiling and look happy when you get up to delivery your speech, you will set a tone of warmth and friendliness. If you look serious and tense, you will set a different sort of tone—one of anxiety and discomfort.
Your tone should be related to the topic of your speech. If you are giving a speech intended to inspire people to take action. An uplifting and positive tone can motivate your audience. If you are telling a tragic personal story, your tone would probably be quite serious.
Although your tone will run throughout your speech, it can vary as you proceed. For example, you might start out with a serious tone as you point out a problem of some kind, such as cruelty to animals, but you might end with a much more positive tone in moving your audience to address the problem.
In your first few words, you may also establish your audience will feel about you as a person. If you’re enthusiastic, warm, and friendly and give a sense that what you’re going to talk about is in the audience’s best interest, it will make them feel more comfortable about spending time listening to you. For longer speeches, you will have more time to accomplish all of the goals. But for shorter speeches, you will focus on getting attention, establishing listener relevance, and starting the thesis; then you will try a very brief comments to try to build your credibility, establish an appropriate tone, and develop goodwill.