How to Write a Great Five Minute Speech

by Emile Heskey; Updated September 26, 2017
Planning your speech will keep it focused.

Delivering a good speech depends upon writing a good speech. Even the most assured orators have to put effort into writing their speeches. Knowing what makes a good speech and what the purpose of your speech is will keep you on track. If you keep this in mind, you will give a powerful, informative, and well-received speech. Proper planning will help you to condense a lot of information into your five-minute speech.

Step 1

Have a clear purpose of your speech in mind. Your speech should have one key goal, which you should keep in mind when writing. For example, if you are speaking to your employees, the aim could be "Informing the staff of plans for the next six months." If you cannot sum up your aim in one phrase, you are trying too much. Write the title of your speech at the top of any paper you are using.

Step 2

Know your audience. If you are speaking to schoolchildren, then technical jargon will be too advanced. If you are speaking to your peers, then explaining every term will seem patronizing and boring. Your speech is for your audience, not for yourself.

Step 3

Pace your speech. Have three main points to get across, and give a minute for each. You will then have a minute to introduce your idea and a minute to conclude. Your conclusion should give recommendations and should finish on a strong sentence. Begin your speech with a quotation to get people's attention.

Step 4

Write your speech out in full, and check the language and the grammar. Practice reading your speech out in full in front of a mirror or colleague. Time yourself to determine if it is within the time limit. Cut out any bits that are unnecessary and push you over the time limit.

Step 5

Condense your speech down from full sentences to just bullet-point notes. If you have practiced your speech enough, you will remember most of it, and bullet points will keep you on track. If you are nervous, write the first three sentences out in full. This will help you stay focused, and after three sentences you will be relaxed enough to use bullet-point notes.

About the Author

Emile Heskey has been a professional writer since 2008, when he began writing for "The Journal" student newspaper. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in modern history and politics from Oxford University, as well as a Master of Science in Islamic and Middle Eastern studies from Edinburgh University.

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