Endings tend to be awkward. Saying goodbye to a friend, leaving family after a holiday event, ending a relationship, or even just knowing what to say at the end of speech.
Those last words though, that final thought, create the feeling that encapsulates the event. Do you want to walk away feeling awkward, unsettled, and unsure or do you prefer feeling happy, excited for the next encounter, and inspired?
The answer is clear.
I heard a fabulous speaker recently who ended an engaging, thought provoking, humorous talk with the phrase: “I guess that is all I have to say”. What a let-down for the audience and what a let-down for the speaker. You could almost see the awkwardness in the air as we politely applauded.
There is an easy solution for this predictable problem though: simply recap the purpose of your talk in one sentence – say it with a smile, and leave the stage.
What is it you hope to leave the audience with when you are done? What was the point of your talk? What do you hope they will do next? If you take the time to plan and practice this one line, you will end each meeting, each conversation, and each presentation leaving a very positive impression on your audience.
The next time you speak, take the message of your talk, put it into a single sentence and use it as your closing line. You will be amazed at how good that feels and how well the audience responds.
(Hint: Did you notice what I just did?)
This Speaking Tip is one in a series from iSpeakEASY. We help people present information in an exciting and relevant manner – usually by helping them avoid the mistakes discussed here. Contact us for information on workshops and coaching.
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