Words are powerful.
They have the ability to heal and hurt, build up or break down, and start fights and stop wars.
A wise man once said, “Death and life are in the power of the tongue …”
And it was Mark Twain who said …“The difference between the right word and the almost right word is the difference between lightning and the lightning bug.”
If Twain was right, can you imagine what the difference is between the right word and the wrong word?
When you’re preparing a speech, how do you know which words are the “right” ones to use? Before beginning to write, ask these four critical questions:
1. Should the tone be formal or informal?
Most speeches should be written using an informal tone. Speeches that use an informal tone are conversational in nature. But don’t be fooled—not all speeches are meant to be conversational. There are times when giving a formal speech is more appropriate, particularly when a message from an institution must be delivered.
A message from an individual might say, “After reviewing the proposals, we decided to go with plan A.”
A message from an institution, however, might state, “After reviewing the proposals, it was decided that plan A would be used.”