3-minute speeches: Complete guide on writing, preparing and delivering (with examples)

Although 3-minute speeches may seem brief, a lot of words and ideas may be said at that time. Despite the time constraint, if you are conversant with the subject matter, you may prepare for your three-minute speech swiftly. The secret is to create a strong outline that allows you to add or remove details based on how much time you have left.

Words in a 3-minute speech

An average speech of three minutes in length would have roughly 390 words at a regular speech rate of 130 words per minute (wpm).

Daphne Gray-Grant, a speech and writing coach, discovered that the typical speaking tempo is 125 to 150 words per minute or 375 to 450 words for a three-minute speech.

Read this article for more information: How long should a speech be?

Writing 3-minute speeches

An engaging speech may capture the attention of the crowd and properly capture the spirit of the event. On the other side, if it is poorly written or disorganised, a dozing audience will miss your point. There is no one ideal structure for a speech. You should instead choose what will resonate with your audience the most.

1. Importance of Stories

Beginning with a story engages the audience, and using stories to break up your speech illustrates the concepts you’re talking about using instances from real life. You might also choose to tell snippets of a single story throughout your speech to illustrate your point. If you’re speaking to a group of professional women with kids, for instance, a story about work-life balance is appropriate. Pick a story that is relevant to your audience. Infrequently, if ever, are overtly political or religious statements appropriate.

2. Simply the Facts

It could be advisable to stick to only the facts while presenting a subject while looking for methods to make them applicable to your audience. But no matter what you talk about, keep your speech’s goal in mind at all times. You run the risk of losing the attention of your audience, and making a point with a long, winding speech isn’t particularly effective.

3. Ordered Chronologically

Your tale or the information you’re conveying must make sense in the order you present it, which typically entails using chronological order. If you’re discussing company law, for instance, you should start with earlier laws and tell a tale about how those rules have been modified or updated. It is feasible to deliver a speech in reverse chronological sequence, but you must make sure your audience understands this to avoid misunderstanding. Give the audience frequent dates or other points of reference to serve as the context for the timing of your speech.

4. Organizing Advice

By outlining your speech, you can make sure that you follow the proper flow and concentrate on the most important points rather than getting lost in the weeds of details. Make a rough draught of your speech, then practise it so that it flows naturally before you give it. Take a list of the key points you want to discuss in your speech and consult a subject-matter expert for any information that is either missing or superfluous to ensure that you cover what you need to.

5. Use of Diction

We select our words based on the circumstances we find ourselves in and the audience we are speaking to. The language you would use with your friends might not be appropriate for your boss. Pick the appropriate words for your audience in order to deliver a speech that is effective. The language you use must be clear to them. It is preferable to stay away from using slang because your language must also be acceptable for the topic. You do not need to poke fun at the audience or try to be amusing. Since audiences are able to tell when a speaker isn’t being sincere, speak from the heart and don’t just say what you think the audience wants to hear. You’ll be able to express yourself more strongly and with more emotion as a result.

use of diction in 3 minute speeches

6. Speech Patterns

Different speeches are needed for different circumstances. A three-minute presentation in class about your ideal job has a different format than a speech to your graduating class. Learning the appropriate format for various speech kinds is simple. There are various varieties of speeches, all of them ranging in form and length. Impromptu, demonstration, educational, persuading, or tribute speeches are a few examples. Each speech is appropriate for a particular situation in life. Select the speech structure that best fits your circumstance, then formats your speech in line with it. Be mindful of your introduction. Strong opening approaches, sometimes known as “hooks,” come in a variety of forms, including tales, rhetorical questions, shocking claims, striking facts, or simply acting in an unexpected or out-of-the-ordinary manner.

Preparing 3-minute speeches

One of the best strategies to make sure you deliver a compelling presentation is to practise your speech beforehand. Consider using these hints to aid in your preparation:

  • Your speech should be organised logically with an introduction, body, and conclusion.
  • Before giving a speech, frequently practise and rehearse it. Try practising in front of a mirror or with friends acting as your audience. Use a timer to help you pace your speech, and be careful to do so.
  • Learn about the podium or other location where the speech will be delivered. Find out the size of the stage, the location of any steps or impediments, and the best places to enter and exit.
  • Always keep a professional impression while dressing comfortably.
  • Regardless of whether a speech is humorous, serious, or technical, visual aids should fit it. The primary function of visual aids is to facilitate audience comprehension and reinforce key ideas of a speech in distinctive and engaging ways.
practice 3 minute speeches

Practising 3-minute speeches

It’s common for jittery, distracting body language and a lack of preparation to ruin otherwise effective speeches. Practice your speech after you’ve planned and written it.  You have not practised enough if you need to read your speech word-for-word from your notes. You will feel more assured as you practise more. The best way to get rid of tense body language is to have a buddy videotape you speaking so you can see it repeatedly. While speaking, pay attention to how your hands are moving; they should be at ease.

Pay attention to how you stand; you should be tall and straight. Be mindful of your eye contact. Keep your eyes off of your notes, the floor, or the ceiling. Change your jewellery if it is noisy. Don’t touch your face or hair. Do not clasp your hands behind or in front of your back, and refrain from putting your hands in your pockets. Before giving your speech, repeat this procedure multiple times to make sure you have broken these undesirable habits.

The Big Day

Arrive early at the location on the day of your presentation. Wear clean, acceptable apparel, and go for the look that gets you the most compliments. Make sure your cell phone is off and remove any large objects from your pockets. Check your loudness in the room before you start to make sure you are loud enough. Make sure you can make eye contact with those seated at the audience’s margins by paying attention to where they are seated. Check the location in advance to make sure there are no obstacles like wires or cables that could cause you to trip if you wish to move while speaking. All of these actions will support your confidence grows.

Don’t try to improvise during your speech; instead, speak as you did when you were practising. Keep in mind that feeling anxious before, during, and especially after your speech is natural. This is neither a flaw nor a weakness. Use your anxious energy to make your speech lively and engaging if you have done your preparation and practising well.

Delivering 3-minute speeches

Public speaking that is effective and confident should appear natural. In truth, it takes most people a lot of time and practice before they feel comfortable speaking in front of an audience. To overcome stage anxiety, present yourself with confidence, and keep your audience interested, you can employ a variety of tactics.

1. Avoid showing any nervousness while speaking.

Imagine yourself as someone who is imparting knowledge to others who are willing to listen. Don’t worry too much about how you’ll come across while nervous: When a speaker claims to be really frightened, audiences can not help but notice their anxiety. You perceive it as far worse than your listeners do. It doesn’t really matter whether you’re anxious as long as you act calm.

2. Create positive body language

The grin is the most significant facial expression. This forges an immediate connection with your audience and will win them over. Use your facial expressions to emphasise important points: Your speech will look more believable as a result.

It’s important to stand up straight, space your feet slightly apart, and keep your arms at your sides. Do not sway or place your hands on your hips when speaking. You’ll come across as more assured and credible if you appear grounded. Avoid making “closed” motions like crossing your arms or knees or posing for a picture with your arms behind your back. A mental barrier is put up between you and your audience as a result.

3. Use gestures for achievement

To make your message easier for the audience to follow, use your arms and hands. Effective, self-assured body language captures listeners’ attention. Together, your body and words can convey a potent statement. Make sure to vary your gestures to avoid coming out as a robot.

To effectively emphasise ideas, adjust your body language to the size of the area you are working in. Make powerful motions when giving a speech! Tentative, hesitant acts might give you a doubtful, unconvincing appearance.

4. Make eye contact to captivate others.

Make as much eye contact with your audience as you can to engage them (and appear interested in them). Don’t only focus on one welcoming face. Make sure you engage the entire audience by looking at the folks at the rear and on the sides in addition to the front. Observe the crowd more intently than your notes. Not something you read from, notes should be prompt.

make eye contact in 3 minute speeches

How to make a 3-minute speech interesting?

People worry that they will have to “dumb down” their important research due to time constraints, however, this is not the case!

A punchy message and an engaging brief speech can shed light on the breadth of your research and make the worth of your thoughts clear.

If you make the most of your three minutes and plan your speech effectively, you will have plenty of time to accomplish this.

  1. Deliver a message that is quite obvious.
  2. Present a “top and tail” component.
  3. To clarify a complex concept, use metaphors and other verbal illustrations.
  4. Instead of “making a formal speech,” speak as if you are having a conversation with your listeners.

General topics for 3-minute speeches

1.Why is it so hard for us to fathom life without technology?
2.Why are effective communication skills so crucial?
3.An excellent sense of humour is crucial.
4.My worst life event and the lessons it taught me.
5.Helpful advice for acing an interview.
6.Every firm should prioritise cybersecurity.
7.How well does technology match our expectations?
8.How can I choose a good career?
9.Why being young is not all that it seems to be?
10.Why do manners matter so much in defining a person?

3-minute speeches for students

1. Hobbies

Everyone has interests, and everyone enjoys discussing them. You know, hobbies could also be passions. Simple inquiries to pose include:

  • What interests you?
  • Why are your activities so appealing to you?
  • When do you engage in these pastimes?
  • What are your hobbies, how long have you been doing them, and how did you start?
  • What pastimes did you once enjoy but no longer do?
  • Is it necessary to engage in hobbies? Why or why not?

2. Music

Everyone enjoys music, and the majority of people have extremely strong feelings about it, especially when it comes to the music they enjoy (or detest) the most. Simple inquiries to make include the following:

  • What genres of music do you enjoy or find boring?
  • What emotions do various musical genres evoke in you?
  • What genres of music are produced in your nation?
  • What song, artist, or album is your favourite?
  • What music is now in vogue in your nation?

3. Motivation

Whether or whether the pupils are motivated, it is a good idea to talk about motivation in order to motivate them. Examples of questions are:

  • In general, how motivated are you?
  • What spurs you on to action?
  • What inspires people to accomplish the most?
  • What actions do you do when you lack motivation?
  • How can one effectively inspire others?

4. Goals

Everybody has objectives, and discussing them really makes us more motivated to take action. Goal-setting can be aided by sharing them with others. An excellent set of inquiries are:

  • What are your present life objectives?
  • How are your goals going to be attained?
  • How frequently do you set yourself goals?
  • What objectives have you previously set and attained?
  • How do you feel after achieving your objectives?

5. Dreams

Everyone has dreams, sometimes on a nightly basis, and discussing them in class is a terrific activity since it encourages pupils to be imaginative and even whimsical. Excellent inquiries on this subject include:

  • How would you characterise your dreams?
  • What do dreams represent to you?
  • What percentage of your dreams can you recall? Why?
  • What are your thoughts about prophecies? Are they genuine?
  • What are some instances of your most cherished dreams?

Go through this article for more valuable insights: Speech titles and topics: Everything you need to know

Examples of 3-minute speeches

  1. A 3-minute speech on the topic “Life”.

Good morning to everyone in this room. I’m here today to speak about life and share my opinions with all of you. Life is a never-ending process that must come to an end eventually. Life is all about creating and adoring oneself. a quotation for you: “Life can only be comprehended by living it backwards.” The potential to live a meaningful life and help others do the same is presented by life itself. It makes no difference how long you live. However, how well you lead a good life matter.

Death is a constant menace to our life. Everyone will eventually die, but that doesn’t mean we should stop trying to live life to the fullest or pursue our ambitions. A person is only intelligent when they are prepared to face their destiny when it calls, but in the meantime, they should cherish every moment. There is an air of preparation. Every person goes through a journey in life where they must cross the bridge of death in order to awaken to eternal life.

Life itself is a genuinely priceless gift. Every moment we have in our life gives us the chance to do something to grow and display our virtues. Every instant unlocks the path for us to accept blessings. The reality is that both good and bad things happen to us in life. What matters most is how we respond.

God has given us life as a gift in the hope that we will do our best to make it meaningful. Each of us is a special individual. Respect your uniqueness since no one was born exactly like you and no one ever will be. I frequently come across people who accuse God of something they themselves do not possess. They constantly curse their lives. But do they understand how priceless this life is in and of itself? If we make life worthwhile and strive diligently for positivity.

Finally, I’ll say that we ought to make life valuable. Life should be made beautiful by the affection of our family and friends. By carrying out our responsibilities in our families, our workplaces, society, and the larger globe, life can be more beautiful and meaningful.

2. A 3-minute speech by Aaron Beverly who was the 2nd place winner of the 2016 World Championship of Public Speaking

3. A 3-minute speech by Emma Watson on Gender Equality

Final words

Speaking for three minutes is undoubtedly difficult to master. You must unquestionably conduct an adequate study and choose crucial issues to include in your speech. It is crucial to realise that you must deliver the most essential information first while speaking in a restricted amount of time, such as a 3-minute speech.

A three-minute speech is undoubtedly a wonderful starting point for public speaking. This is because you need to communicate with your audience more effectively when you just have a short amount of time. The speech ought to be concise, pertinent, and clear. Be more relatable to the audience and speak for them. To be the best, you must improve your communication abilities.

Read this article for more useful information: Writing and delivering spectacular short speeches: A-Z guide

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