There are five personal benefits that come with taking a public speaking course. The first skill is, “learning how to speak to an audience” (Gregory). This skill is applicable when dealing with large and unfamiliar crowds. Another benefit is that “you learn skills that apply to one-on-one communication” (Gregory). Being able to speak to a person face to face is essential for the human connection. The third and fourth reasons are that “you develop the oral communication skills that are prized in the job market” and “you learn in an ideal environment for gaining experience and building confidence” (Gregory). The job market is extremely competitive and the individuals that can communicate will end up with a more adequate job. A safe learning environment provides one with the comfort required to gain confidence in public speaking. Finally and most importantly, you can make a contribution to the lives of other people. The most applicable skill to me would be learning how to speak to an audience.
The seven elements of the speech communication process are the speaker, the listener, the message, the channel, the feedback, the interface and the situation. The “speaker” is applicable to my life because I am “the source of a message” and I need to relay that message to the listeners” (Gregory). The message “is where the speaker communicates to the listeners” and this relates to my daily life because I need to understand what “symbols” I am giving to the audience (Gregory). “The channel is the medium used to communicate the message” and I need to understand the mediums I use to relay my message to the listeners (Gregory). Feedback is important because it “is the response that the listeners give the speaker” and I need it to understand my strengths and weaknesses when it comes to public speaking (Gregory). “Interference” is “anything that blocks or hinders the accurate communication of a message” and I need to recognize all my interfaces whether they be external, internal or speaker-generated (Gregory). The “situation” will help me recognize what kind of audience I am dealing with.
There are three different types of interference that a speaker may encounter. These three types are external, internal, and speaker-generated. The “external” interface can be avoided by focusing on what is actually important, which is the message. “Internal” interference can be avoided by making sure that the audience is completely engaged. “Speaker-Generated” interference can be avoided by eliminating serious distractions. These distractions would be “unfamiliar words, confusing concepts, or bizarre clothing” (Gregory).
Fear and nervousness are beneficial to the public speaker. Fear is beneficial because it “gives you vitality and enthusiasm” (Gregory). Nervousness is beneficial because, you can transform it into “positive nervousness”. “Positive Nervousness is converting your anxiety into constructive energy” (Brooks). I can apply both my fear and my nervousness to generate an acceptable speech.
Delivering a speech from memory is a bad idea for several reasons. One of these reasons would be forgetting how you phrased your speech. Rhetoric is essential when it comes to captivating an audience, therefore the speaker needs to choose their words wisely. Another reason would be forgetting your speech entirely and that would reflect badly towards the audience. Derailing your speech and going off tangent is also a possibility when you memorize a speech. All of these factors would negatively influence how the audience views a speaker. The audience wants to be reassured that you are a credible speaker that is sincere in what they are talking about.