The Art of Persuasive Speaking

Essay by Brad DeShongHigh School, 10th gradeA+, November 1996

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The Art of Persuasive Speaking

Speaking is a very important part of our society today. You present yourself and your attitude in what you say and how you act. Your tone of voice controls the way people perceive you and can greatly enhance or detract from the message you are trying to get across to someone.

When speaking to someone you must first gain their attention. Let's face it, it's no use trying to tell a baseball fan anything if he's watching television during the 9th inning of a tie ball game. Your message either won't be interpreted properly or won't be interpreted at all. The volume at which you talk can be a great attention getter, if you use it right. If you walk to the front of a class and quietly ask for some attention, odds are no one will even notice you. If you walk up in front of a class and scream "EVERYONE SHUT-UP!", you'll probably notice a slight difference in how much attention you'll get.

Though, screaming may get you some attention for the moment, no one likes to be yelled at and they will eventually lose interest in what you are talking about and continue with whatever they were doing before you interrupted them. To keep people's attention you have to talk in language that they understand, and find a compromise between shouting at them and quietly asking for attention.

After you get an audiences attention and are able to keep their attention, you're home free. People are gullible. You can make them do whatever you want with the power of your voice; you just have to make them think that they'll like it or gain something from it. There are countless examples of this that are spoken and written.