Public Speaking Humor

Make Them Laugh

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public speaking humor, photo by Hannah Boettcher on sxc.hu

Getting your audience to laugh with you is one of the best ways to develop rapport, that special connection that gets your point across. But public speaking humor isn't always easy to do well. Here's how to mix in some good humor in One Month, One Day, or One Minute.


Note: Speeches don't need jokes to be funny! Get featured with your funny public speaking stories, or read and comment on stories from other readers.

Public Speaking Humor in One Month

The great thing about having a month is that there's time to come to understand the people you are speaking to. Inside jokes create a sense of community, so learn them. If you know some people who will be in your audience, if you can get in contact with your employer, if you're around people you already know, then find and use the inside jokes. Referencing specific events or attitudes in the company is much more humorous than a generic joke. Ask people what they think is funny. Ask if there's anything humorous about your topic - if they say there's not, then that's a funny story in and of itself. Be creative and use your time!


Public Speaking Humor in One Day

If you need to add a quick dash of humor to your speech, use jokes. "Why did the chicken cross the road? So that he wouldn't have to hear me speak!" - rather lame in this context, but it would be great if you were talking to a chicken farmers' association. Tell us your favorite jokes, or here are more jokes for public speaking and how to develop them.

Public Speaking Humor in One Minute

Here's where the impromptu skills come into play. Make fun of yourself - everyone's got at least one funny story that they can tell off the top of their head. Use it! Notice any incongruities in the room, laugh as you trip up onto the stage... the possibilities are limitless.

The best way to develop impromptu ability is to practice, so next time you're with people, make a point to attempt to say at least one funny thing to every person you talk to.

Happy speaking!

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