Different Kinds of Delivery


Choose your mode.





Tips for using your voice and body to influence


From Sprague, Jo and Douglas Stuart. Speakerís Handbook. 2nd Ed. San Diego: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1988.

The appropriate mode of delivery will change based on the topic, audience and occasion.

1.     If you have little time to prepare, you will be forced to use an impromptu mode.

2.     If your exact words will matter, such as when giving a policy statement or giving an important announcement, or if the occasion is formal, you will probably use a manuscript or memorize your words.

3.     For most speaking situations use the extemporaneous mode.

4.     No speech is purely one mode. Even in an extemporaneous speech, for example, it is often advisable to write out the introduction and conclusion and partially memorize them. And any speaker who encounters hecklers must expect to engage in some impromptu retorts.

A.    Extemporaneous

1.     Extemporaneous speaking is the most common mode of delivery, and is the one you should use in all but a few special cases.

2.     Memorize ideas, not specific words, except for key transitions, introduction, conclusion, and perhaps some key examples.

3.     Used by most teachers, trial lawyers, salespersons, and others engaged in speaking for hours at a time or for large portions of the day.

4.     Extemporaneous speaking involves

a.      preparation

b.     structure

c.      support

d.     practice

e.      main idea

f.       introduction and conclusion

5.     Benefits

a.      Easier to sound natural and confident.

b.     Easier to respond to feedback or changes in the situation.

B.    Impromptu

1.     Use impromptu speaking when you have no time for preparation and planning.

2.     Not appropriate for any critical message.

3.     However, impromptu situations do occur.

a.      For example, you are called into an executive management meeting on the spur of the moment to explain how your department help cut costs.

b.     Because a meeting runs long, you are forced to reduce a 20 page report into a 3 minute presentation.

c.      A customer comes into your corporate headquarters complaining about one of your policies.

4.     Steps to handle an impromptu situation

a.     Keep your composure.

i.       Donít apologize.
ii.     Donít expect perfection. You speak all the time without extensive preparation.

b.     Use the time you have, however short.

i.       Jot down notes, if you have the time.

c.      Select a main idea.

i.       Try to craft a single, declarative sentence that sums up what you need to say.
ii.     Make this conspicuous when you speak.
iii.   Be sure to connect your main idea to the audience and the occasion.
iv.   Remember the critical issues. Pick the top 2 or 3.

d.     Select a pattern for your ideas.

i.       Keep it simple.
ii.     Some possibilities:
1.)   Past-Present-Future
2.)   Pros and Cons
3.)   Problems and Prospects
4.)   Concentric rings (Main points progress from immediate concerns to universal concerns)

a.)   For example

i.)    In the Home,

ii.)  In the School,

iii.)In the Community;

b.)   Or

i.)    Locally,

ii.)  Regionally,


iv.) Internationally

5.)   Domains(Develop the different spheres touched by the topic)

a.)   For example:

i.)    Politically,

ii.)  Socially,


b.)   Or

i.)    Practical Implications,

ii.)  Theoretical Implications,

iii.)Moral Implications

e.      Select at least one type of support for each point: an explanation, an example, a story, a fact, or a statistic.

f.       Whenever possible, plan your first and last sentences.

i.       Look for an attention getter.
ii.     Take you best piece of information and use it as a lead. Get their attention, state your main idea, move through your main points, and state the main idea again.
iii.   If you have a solid conclusion that differs from the introduction, use it. If not, donít waste time. Simply summarize the main points and restate the main idea.

C.    See tips for manuscript speaking.

D.    Memorize a short, important speech only on those occasions where holding a manuscript would be out of place.

This page was last modified on Wednesday, August 15, 2001.
You may contact the instructor at SHKaminski@yahoo.com
This material is for the exclusive use of the students in Webster University COMP 5970. Unauthorized use is prohibited.