By: Susan Dugdale | First published: 07-01-2010 | Last modified: 02-02-2019
A self-introduction speech is often called for at a first meeting of a group. It could be a work-based seminar, a break-out group at a conference, a hobby group, your new class at the start of the term ...The occasions are numerous.
The one thing these settings generally share is the need to make a bunch of strangers feel at ease - to quickly establish a sense of unity or belonging.
One of commonest ways to achieve that in a group setting where people are expected to work collaboratively together eg. a break-out group at a conference, is to have each person give a brief self-introduction speech.
That gives rise to a whole lot of questions.
Usually the leader will start and around the members of the group you go, one by one.
First impressions count - so let's look at the elements that go together to make ...
Here are six content areas to cover. The first three are essential. The remaining three elevate your speech from "basic" to interesting to listen to.
If putting together a self introduction speech is sprung on you with very little warning use the few minutes you have before it is your turn to speak to organize your thoughts.
If you're inclined to be tongue-tied, awkward and nervous, don't listen to what others are saying before you.
I know that seems rude but the situation calls for self-preservation.
If you listen, you'll get mesmerized by their speeches and unable to plan anything useful for yourself which will heighten your anxiety.
Grab a piece of paper the moment the round-robin introduction is announced and start jotting down ideas.
Start with the first three items from the list above. That's the basic information - your name, where you are from and your background. Then add more as time permits.
Everything you put down should be relevant to the occasion and your audience.
Generally the timing allowed for a self-introductory speech is between 1 - 2 minutes.
Going over that is poor form because it eats into the time allocated for everybody to speak. In addition rambling on without being mindful of the larger group could be interpreted as boring and/or egotistical.
Here's a simple short self-introduction speech sample. You can use it as a model to prepare your own speech. All up there are 130 words which will take approximately a minute to say.
I'm Masie Smith, Senior Marketing Executive, from Watts and Frederick in Smalltown, Bigstate.
It's great to be finally here. I've been dreaming about the opportunity and possibilities of working collectively and directly with each other for a long time now. Jane and Sam can attest to that. There's been hours put in balancing the schedules to make it happen.
Webinars and email are fine but nothing beats face to face.
Working like this has always been a passion. Even in kindergarten I tried to set up a group-think session around a one swing and ten children problem.
Years later my master degree focused on harnessing group energy creatively. I've been inspired by agencies that got it right.
Sally you've already said it and I echo you. I'm excited!
If you know you have situations coming up that will call for a self introduction speech start generating one ahead of time.
Make yourself an adaptable template using the core elements listed above that you can use whatever the situation you are in.
Practicing your speech out loud will help you refine and hone your message.
It's worth doing as this speech can set the way in which others view you. That is, it can open doors, as well as close them!
With repetition you'll gain the confidence to speak for yourself concisely and cohesively and the temptation to succumb to a fit of the blithers will have vanished!