I recommend, for the first 10 speeches, no visual aids at all, no slides, nothing.
We’re there in Toastmasters to learn how to connect with the audience.
We’re there to learn how to make eye contact, and how to relax, and how to use body language, and how to get inside of the audience’s head.
It’s really hard to do that if you’re also learning how to use visual aids.
Now, I totally understand that that’s not set in stone. There are perfectly good arguments against that. The downside of this approach is that you can get through a full year of Toastmasters and not have any practice with visual aids at all. You’re not going to be good at a speech with slides and stuff.
You will, however, be really good, because you will have been spent a full year practicing, how to connect with your audience without the use of visual aids at all.
My personal recommendation is no visual aids at all, for the first 10 speeches, but I totally understand that there are perfectly good arguments against that.
About Matt Krause
Matt began his professional life as an import buyer, and since 2006 has been teaching companies how to connect with their investors and clients better. His clients work in Istanbul, London, and Madrid for companies like Allianz, 3M, P&G, Citibank, and Reckitt Benckiser. He also walked across Turkey and wrote a book about it.