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Interaction or communication is important to achieve total excellence in relaying a message or a conversation. The speaker or speakers play a vital role to ensure the intended message is being relayed. It is not easy to talk well but sales personnel, insurance agents and direct selling agents are able to achieve their targets because of their influential talks.

The first requisite for a good speaker is to have a good voice. The speaker must have a voice that is neither too loud. too low, inaudible, nor harsh. What the speaker needs is a voice that is sweet and far-reaching. A god voice is sometimes God's gift. Some people are gifted with the voice that can arrest and attract you. However, an experienced speaker will comment that this can be cultivated to the required quality.

The expression on the look is also important. It is good to have a good expressive face. No one likes to see a face that has an ugly expression on the physical outlook. Put on a happy look because a smile speaks a thousand words.

The physical appearance and gestures of the speaker are very important too. The audience will be sitting in a room looking at a speaker who must be pleasant though not necessarily beautiful. As the saying goes, 'mankind normally judges a person by the looks'. Therefore, this criteria is important to ensure everyone gives the due respect and attention. Some speakers try to tempt their audience with their physical gestures. However, overdoing will not help. It only distracts the attention of the listeners and soon, you will be surprised that people might be leaving the room.

The length of a speech is a matter of importance. An hour is long enough for a good public speech. The secret of success is the art of omission. Leave the audience with a feeling that you have spoken effectively. Bear in mind the pulse of the audience. Stop before the audience gets tired or restless.

An effective speaker must arouse the interest of his audience. It is important to retain the attention of his audience. Practice makes perfect. It's easier said than done, but learn to adapt to the situation. Adding a little humor is also a powerful tool. It is alright to make the audience laugh their way out once in a while. This is a part of the traits of an effective speaker.

Good anecdotes and stories are great aids to speaking. Of course the speaker must avoid becoming a bore by telling stories only. However, make it a point by sharing a short story that amuses or anecdotes that can send a nerve sensation tot he minds of the listeners. Quotations are very useful in speaking. But they are most apt when they come to you spontaneously.

A day or two before the presentation, prepare your speech in advance. The best preparation is to make a mental note of the points. Plan how to begin the speech and also to close the speech. Ensure that the speech is logical and closely argued. Make sure that all the points have been well stressed.

Another criteria to take into consideration is the language. Use standard English if you are required to present them. Never use bombastic language. The language must be simple, easy to understand and clear.

Finally, always do a research on your audience. study the audience carefully. Who are they ? What do they want to listen and their needs ? Address them at the beginning of your presentation. Watch and see how they react. Remember to adjust your speech to the audience. There are different kinds of audience. Some are easy to address. Others may be slightly hostile. So adapt to the situation. Employ all the weapons of an effective speaker to convince your audience and make them realize that there is a good deal to be said from your point o view.

From paragraph 1

List two types of people who need to talk well.

    From paragraph 1

(a) Why is interaction considered to be important ?

(b) What is the role of a speaker ?

    From paragraph 2

(a) What does a speaker need so as to attract the audience ?

From paragraph 3

(b) Write a phrase that states expression is important.

    From paragraph 4

(a) Why must one not overuse gestures ?

(b) Why is physical appearance important ?

    From paragraph 10

Why is it important to study the audience earlier before the presentation of a speech ? Answer in your own words.

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(i) Sales personnel.

(ii) Insurance agents

(iii) Direct selling agents



(a) To achieve total excellence in relaying a message or a conversation.

(b) To ensure the intended message is being relayed.



(a) A good voice.

(b) 'a smile speaks a thousand words'



(a) It distracts the attention of the listeners, causing them to leave the room.

(b) To gain respect and attention.



Knowing the audience earlier is important so as to know of their needs, purposes and demands of coming to listen to the talk so that the speaker can be well prepared and be forewarned of the expectations and the types of audience in the room.


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Comprehension 1


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