How to write a speech in 10 minutes

By | February 6, 2015

 Ted Corcoran Workshop

By Mairead Haugh and Andy Ellman CC

This format is not just for a 5-7 minute speech, but can be used for a speech of any length –  the only thing that changes is the amount of content you choose!

The Golden Rule – Pick something Simple, which will be Heard, Understood and Remembered!

The problem that most new and even long term members of Toastmasters encounter is that they pick way too complicated a topic. As a result, it can be difficult to convey the message in the required amount of time.

Three Objectives –  Persuade, Inform or Inspire

These are the three main premises for any Toastmasters speech, when you have settled on a topic for your speech.

 This “Write a speech in 10 minutes” template can be split into three segments, each consisting of three parts.  These nine points that are easy to remember and make up the spine of any good speech:  

Segment A)  – Parts 1, 2 and 3 cover the preview of the speech

Segments B)  – Parts 4, 5 and 6 represent the body of the speech

Segments C)  – Parts 7, 8 and 9 form the conclusion of the speech

Let us now explore the key elements of each of these 9 segments – let the fun begin!

Segment A

Part 1)   Getting Attention –  Opening lines:

The opening few seconds are crucial to grabbing the audience’s attention – use a quote, ask a question – something that is going to make everyone sit up and listen!

Part 2)   What is the subject matter? Is there a simple message you want to convey?

Clearly state the message you want to leave with the audience.

Part 3)   Preview – What is going to be discussed …brief overview of points 4, 5 and 6.

Segment B

Outline the main thrust or elements of your speech. The body of your speech should be organized as follows:

Part 4)   First piece of information

Part 5)   Second piece of information

Part 6)   Third piece of information

By selecting just three pieces of information – the power of three – you will find that is enough to make the point, but not so much that the listeners will forget the points by the end of the speech.

Segment C

Part 7)   Summary

Now briefly summarise the speech

Part 8)   Tie the summary of the speech back to the simple, succinct message set out in speech point 2.

 Loop the point you made in point 2 – to part of your conclusion. Repetition and resonation are important elements of public speaking.

Part 9)   Refers back to point 1 (getting attention).

Use the same quote or question you used at the very beginning to round of the speech.

In essence,  the preview (segment A) explains what you go are going to tell them.

The body (Segment B) tells them.

The conclusion (Segment C) tells them what you told them.

Other pointers from Ted: don’t write out your speech in full! Unless you have a fantastic memory, you may forget a word, and this could throw your speech into disarray. If you have the nine points clearly in your head, you will have a good speech.

“Too many people spend too much time trying to perfect something before they actually do it. Instead of waiting for perfection, run with what you’ve got, and fix it along the way…”

― Paul Arden (Marketing guru & author)