More than any other human activity, public speaking is improved by practice and doing. Practicing thoroughly will increase your self confidence and improve your effectiveness, as you become better at delivering your speech.

In my case, I rediscovered the frightening experience of the curtain opening on my first grade play. It seemed like ten million faces were looking at me. I froze. I couldn’t remember my five lines. The negative experience at that early age caused me to have a deep fear of presentation training until I was able to bust the belief barrier.

To help us all out, though, the owner of the website would send out a summary at the end of the day, so every evening about 8:00 PM or so, we’d all get an email with a list of all of the leads that came in that day.

A: I use the same exercises I learned at Second City. Your scene partner says something and you listen and respond. Whatever happens with that ‘stimulus and response,’ we explore and heighten. My goal is to help students develop a greater awareness of their own impulses and instincts, to be able to connect more fully with their partners, and to increase their willingness to take risks. I structure exercises to help students realize that they are in a safe environment, where the possibility of failure and level of actual danger is so low, they can afford to take big risks.

Building confidence. Performing in front of an audience is beyond our comfort zones for many of us. We wonder if we said the right thing and what people are thinking. Improv classes teach you to get out of your head and learn to trust your instincts. As an expert in your chosen field, these skills allow you to speak with self-assurance to prospects and can open up public speakings opportunities.

Organize your material. It should be like a term paper you’d write for school. There should be a logical progression-to-date material in the presentation. It should start with the Introduction, like a paper would with a thesis statement. Then, you have the Body, which is strong supporting arguments, or accurate and up-to-date information. Last, you give the Conclusion. It restates your thesis statement, giving a summary, and a logical conclusion.

One last thing that I would like to discuss is composure. I have watched some of the most powerful people speak in big companies around the world. Now everyone has been different. Not all of them seem outgoing, smart, or funny. But all of them did have one thing in common: they kept their composure. You could easily see it in the way they moved and in the tone of their voice. It’s like a feedback loop and here’s the technique that you can use. The slower you move and slower the tone of your voice, the more confident you feel and the more confident you feel the better you will look and do.