When you hear the word “flow”, what comes to mind? Most likely a river or stream flowing in uninterrupted unison. Getting a flow for your presentation is all about finding this unison and organizing your ideas so that they fit seamlessly together. The organization of your ideas completely depends on what type of speech you are giving, but the majority of speeches follow one of four organizational methods.
If your speech is telling a story, or describing a series of events, telling them in the order they happened is both logical and easy for your audience to follow. Speeches discussing historical topics are often organized this way. Also if you’re speech involves a complex topic, this method can be valuable in helping your audience go step-by-step through their presentation.
Problem – Solution
If your speech involves some sort of issue or problem start by describing it and its impact. Afterwards, transition towards the solution to this problem and what it will take to make this solution happen or how it has happened. Many sales pitches and business speeches are organized this way as most businesses attempt to solve a problem or fill a need in a market. Also if you didn’t notice, this is also the method we used in our introduction video.
Break your main topic down into subtopics. This is the most common method of organization in speeches. Select your subtopics then explain them one by one. Informative or descriptive speeches are often told this way, where you are trying to teach the audience the different parts of your main topic.
Cause – Effect
Either start with the cause of something and explain its effects or start with the effects of something and explain the causes. Use your discretion to determine which one works best with your speech topic. A talk involving environmental, medical, or economical issues should certainly use this method. These are just some examples of many, in which this method works well.
These four methods provide a great starting point to help you organize your ideas when constructing your speech. Not only do each of these methods of work well on their own, but they can be combined with each other to add some complexity to your speech.