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Concluding your Speech Properly

A conclusion is important to any speech. An excellent speech can lose its effectiveness because of a poor closing. If you want people to remember and be favorablyConcluding your Speech Properly impressed with your closing, you must strive to conclude your speech positively and forcefully. Many speakers end with “In conclusion”, “Let me end by saying” , or “In Summary”. Great endings make lasting impressions on your audience and will help them clue in when your speech is ending and don’t require such phrases. Make sure that you only allocate about five to ten percent of your entire speech time dedicated to your conclusion.
Closing Techniques
There are certain techniques, if applied with the criteria that will create a lasting impression with your audience. The following six techniques will help you create strong speech endings:

  1. Use a quotation: Used properly, a quotation can add authority to your closing, amuse your listeners, or dramatize your speech points. Whatever quote you choose, keep it short and related directly to your speech topic.Example: A presentation encouraging people to become concerned about the future environment could close with George Bernard Shaw’s words, “Some men see things as they are and ask, ‘Why?’ I dare to dream of things that never were and ask, ‘Why not?’
  2. Tell a short story or anecdote: A powerful story or anecdote can make a memorable close. It can be inspirational or funny, but it could be short, develop quickly, and be related to or reinforce your message. Personalize it if possible, too.
  3. Call for action: If your speech was intended to persuade or urge your listeners to take some kind of action, your closing statement should clearly explain what action they should take.
  4. Example: You could conclude a speech about drug abuse prevention by saying, “Educating our young people about drugs begins with you. After you leave here tonight, I urge you to go home and talk about your children. Tell them you love them and are concerned for them. Talk to them about drugs.”

  5. Ask a rhetorical question: End a speech by asking one question or series of questions that relate to your topic. The audience will think about an answer and thus your speech.
  6. Example: “You may ask, ‘Can we afford to do this?’ I ask, ‘Can we afford not to?'”

  7. Refer to the beginning of your speech: Tie your closing words to the beginning of your speech to reinforce your message.
  8. Example: “I began my remarks by reviewing the challenges our company must comfort if we are to continue to be successful. I believe these challenges provide opportunities for each of us to learn and grow as individuals. Let’s not be afraid of these challenges; let’s welcome them as opportunities and move forward.”

  9. Summarize your main points: Repeat the points presented in the body of the speech. Repetition reinforces your message and enhances your audience’s learning.
    Example: “Remember, please, the three keys to making this new program work: understanding, commitment, and teamwork. Only when we all know the program, commit to it, and work together will we achieve our goal.”

An excellent speech can lose its effectiveness because of a poor closing. Do not risk leaving your audience with a less-than-favorable impression. Make a lasting impact. Use some of the methods above to conclude your speech positively and forcefully.