Adam Christing

20 Great Quotes To Help You Deliver A Killer Speech

Want to make your next speech more powerful ? Use superb quotations and use them well. In this article, I will share 20 of my favorite quotations for beginning and professional speakers. And I will tell you when and how to use them.

But before we get into these specific sayings, here are a few introductory suggestions for using quotations when you are a keynote speaker , giving an inspirational message, annual report, sales presentation, after-dinner talk, Sunday sermon, teaching lesson, or any speech you are preparing.

  • Use no more than 3 to 5 quotations in your speech. Remember that a quotation is like seasoning on a fine meal. Don’t overuse quotations in your talk. That’s like dumping an entire saltshaker worth of salt on top of your meal. Think of quotes as delicious flavor additives, not the main dish.
  • Avoid using quotes that are already well known to your audience. The real (secret) power of a great quotation is its ability to surprise your listeners.
  • Take the time to find the ideal quotes for your talk. Go deeper than a google search. Read inspiring books, check out relevant articles, visit your local bookstore or library. Keep a journal and collect the sayings, proverbs, quotations, and bits of wisdom that move your heart and mind.
  • Whenever possible, cite the source of your quotation. Give credit where credit is due. And be sure your source is accurate. You will lose credibility if you quote George Washington as an expert on social media! If you cannot track down the original source of your quote, you can simply say, “It has been said…”
  • Make sure your quotations support your main message . Sometimes it’s tempting to sneak a great quip or quote into your talk because you love it. First decide if it’s apt for what you want to communicate.

Here Are 20 of the Best Quotations for Your Next Speech Use One of These Great Quotes When You Want to…

Create laughter.

Quoting a comedian, famous wit, ancient proverb, or even a child’s wisdom can generate an instant laugh during your presentation. And trust me, your audience wants to laugh! Here’s the key: Pause before and after you share the funny quotation or short joke. A humorous quotation will surprise, shock, exaggerate, and often convey a tough truth in a way that delights.

“If you’re looking for a helping hand, there’s one at the end of your arm.” ~Yiddish Proverb

Make them THINK

A powerful quotation will give your audience food for thought. First of course, you must determine what you want your audience to understand, believe, and embrace. Then, choose a quotation that packs a punch.

“He not busy being born, is busy dying.” ~Bob Dylan

Grab their ATTENTION

Usually the shorter the quotation, the more powerful the punch. Long quotes, like long speeches, will leave your audiences yawning. To open your speech, you may want to grab your listener’s attention with a short quotation or aphorism. If you are giving a talk about dream casting or goal-setting for example, here’s a fine quotation:

“If you know what you want, you can have it.” ~RH Jarrett

Prove your POINT

You don’t have to agree with every source you quote. Sometimes who you quote, is as important as what you quote. Here’s an example. Though I obviously detest this famous leader, this quotation makes a powerful point. When I am stressing the power of passion, I sometimes share this one. Note: After I give the source—which always shocks the audience—I remind them that he was evil and that we must use the power of passion for good.

“Only a storm of hot passion can turn the destinies of people. And he alone can arouse passion who bears it within himself.” ~Adolf Hitler

Illustrate an IDEA

A good quotation is like a good story. It’s a window in your house. Use it to let the light in. Help your audience see what you are saying. A good metaphor is one of the most helpful tools in a speaker’s toolbox. To get your idea across, use a strong word picture. Imagine giving a talk to a group of schoolteachers. Your goal is to affirm them for the great work they are doing. You want to remind them that what they do—educating children—matters forever.

“A school is a building with four walls, with tomorrow inside.” ~Lon Watters

INSPIRE your audience

The best speeches lift hearts! If your goal is to motivate your audience, insert a quotation designed to inspire the dreams of your audience members. Connect with their emotions. Choose a statement that is filled with hope and encouragement. Here’s one of my favorites, because it strikes such an emotional chord:

“If your heart is in your dream, no request is too extreme.” ~Jiminy Cricket, Pinocchio

Issue a WARNING

You can use a quotation to sound an alarm. You may want to shake your hearers into stopping/starting a behavior. The key here is choosing a quotation that lights a fire under your people. What mindset do you want them to change? What do you want them to do?

“Unassertive salespeople have skinny kids!” ~Zig Ziglar

Make people CARE

Many speakers make the mistake of thinking that their talk is primarily about content. While content is important, the best speakers transfer their conviction to an audience. Your group doesn’t want more information. They are looking for takeaways and transformation.

“I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” ~Maya Angelou

Capture an INSIGHT

Many times the quotes that will rock your speech are what I call “zingers.” What is a “zinger”? It’s a pithy statement that expresses a flash of insight. Zap your audience with a truth in capsule form. People love to read the fortune inside their fortune cookie—and often the words apply to their lives. When I am giving a speech that talks about how we learn, I love to share this one:

“I respect wisdom but I obey pain.” ~12 Step Recovery Saying

EDUCATE your attendees

Don’t make the mistake many speakers make. Never confuse a statistic with a quotation. Remember: facts tell, stories sell. Search out stories and quotations for your talk that provide “teaching moments.” Tip: Do an Amazon search for aphorism. You’ll discover some great gems and nuggets for your next speech. An aphorism, like a proverb, teaches a memorable lesson-in-a-few-words.

“Don’t expect your ship to come in—unless you’ve sent one out.” ~Belgian Proverb

photo of a mic at an event before introducing funny speaker

STRENGTHEN your case

Know exactly what you want to say to an audience. Then you will be in a position to find the perfect quote(s) for your next keynote speech, workshop or seminar. If you are giving a talk on leadership, select a quotation from an inspiring leader. Are you motivating athletes? Choose a motivational saying from an accomplished football, basketball, or soccer player. Most importantly, know your audience. This will help you know which quotation will best support your speech.

“We don’t see things as they are, we see things as we are.” ~Anais Nin

Make your speech MATTER

A good question to ask yourself is: “Who cares about what I am saying?” By the way, this is the very question your audience is asking when you start your speech. How does this matter to me ? Reverse engineer your speech. Think about the big takeaway you want your group to get from your presentation. Then craft your message—and the quotes that will make it pop—based on the actions you want your audience to take.

“The meaning of communication is the response you get.” ~NLP maxim

Use the power of REPETITION

One of the great speeches in U.S. history is Martin Luther King’s “I Have a Dream” speech. And one of the factors that makes it so powerful? MLK’s repeated use of his awesome title: “I Have a Dream.” Consider repeating a strong quotation again and again during your talk. This can help you re-state your core message. You can also hammer home a big point with a quotation that repeats certain words to great effect. Notice how Winston Churchill did this often. (“Never, never, never give in…”), He and MLK are two of the greatest orators of the 20th century. Both leaders repeated words to maximize the impact of their language.

“We are all worms. But I do believe that I am a glow-worm.” ~Winston Churchill

Enhance a CELEBRATION

Maybe you will give your speech at a wedding, an anniversary party, or an awards program. You can pump up the proceedings with a special quote. Identify a sparkling statement that will raise spirits…and maybe wine glasses. Here’s the key to doing this well: Keep the focus on who/what is being celebrated. Your quotation should amplify the purpose of the event. Honor the bride, toast the award-winner, congratulate the champion. Get clear on the reason for festivities. Your quotation should put a spotlight on what your guests are celebrating together.

“Life is short, wear your party pants.” ~Loretta LaRoche

Want to make sport of a competitor? Handle a heckler? Or lampoon an idea you don’t like? A good quote can work wonders. Just be careful about coming across as mean-spirited. Humor helps.

“Lord, help me make my enemies look ridiculous.” ~Voltaire (French Philosopher)

Increase your AUTHORITY

Don’t get the wrong idea here. Quotations are not the source of your authority, you are. But a compelling quote can boost your credibility as a speaker. Select a quote that comes from a recognized name or organization that will resonate with your audience. Quote an expert. Better yet, become one.

“I am the greatest, I said that even before I knew I was.” ~Muhammed Ali

Speak with CONFIDENCE

Want to know a speaking secret? Your listeners aren’t paying that much attention to what you say. But they are tuned in to how you say it. They are listening for your confidence. What do you do if you don’t feel confident? Act like you are. And to take it to the next level—instill confidence in your audience too. Model it.

“Feel the fear and do it anyway.” ~Susan Jeffers

Bring CLARITY

One of the gifts you can bring people via your message is clarity. Help your audience see the path, cut through the clutter, and take decisive action. Make a statement, or share a quotation, that simplifies things for people. Sometimes this can be phrased as a question like, “What would you do if you knew you could not fail?” Other times you will want to give them the answer straight up. A great quote can help you do just that. You want to communicate with great clarity. And show your audience the way forward.

“If you don’t have a plan for your life, somebody else does.” ~Michael Hyatt

Issue a call to ACTION!

You can wrap-up your speech with a mighty quotation to finish strong. Make sure that your final phrase captures the heart of your main message. Don’t end on something cliché like, “Thanks for listening” or “My name is Blah Blah.” Your end quote, if you use one, should empower your audience and echo the main thrust of your talk. And get this: You want to invite your audience to take action.

“The way to get started is to quit talking and start doing.” ~Walt Disney

Create your own CATCH PHRASE

Few people remember speeches, but many people remember speakers. Can you create an original quotation that fits your personal brand? Tap into what makes you unique. What makes your message special? The final words of your speech can remind people about who you are and what you had to say. What is your signature “sign off” sentence? It might be a parting piece of advice. It could also be a statement you design to capture the way you want the group to remember the experience you created for them.

“The tribe has spoken.” ~Jeff Probst, “Survivor”

By finding and utilizing quotations that appeal to you, you will heighten the impact of your speech. Plug one or two of the above quotations into your next speech or special presentation. Better yet, discover the pitch-perfect quotes for your talk. Weave them into your speech and speak with gusto. You’ll be glad you did. And your audience will be pleased too. You can quote me on that.

Adam Christing is a professional keynote speaker, master of ceremonies , and author . He has written four humor and personal transformation books including: Comedy Comes Clean 1 & 2: A Hilarious Collection of Wholesome Jokes, Quotes, and One-liners, Your Life is a Joke: 12 Ways to Go from Ha Ha to AHA! and Bob Dylan Can Change Your Life: 61 Ways to Invent a Legendary You.  Adam has been studying and collecting quotations for more than 25 years.

Recent Blog Posts:

  • 7 Ways To Make Your End-Of-Year Staff Meeting Memorable And Meaningful
  • The Importance Of Force Majeure Clauses When Corporate Hosting
  • 5 Stage Presence Tips From A Master of Ceremonies
  • Master of Ceremonies Helps 10 Non-Profit Groups Raise Over $77 Million at 10 Fundraising Events in the Fall of 2023
  • The Difference Between Hosting B2B and B2C Events
  • 5 Games To Enhance Your Next Annual Company Dinner
  • 5 Ways To Make Your Workplace Festivities Inclusive During The Holidays
  • 5 Holiday Fundraising Ideas From A Corporate Emcee
  • What Is B2B Event Planning? Your Complete Guide
  • 6 Company Holiday Party Ideas From A Master of Ceremonies

Recommended For You

3 best opening lines to start your emcee gig with, 4 body language techniques that will improve your public speaking, the 6 different types of public speaking.

Comments are closed.

  • Get Started
  • Event Emcee
  • Entertainment
  • How To Be A Great Emcee

Subscribe to Adam's newsletter

Laughing Matters

Powered by Big Red Jelly

Connect with Adam:

© 2024 Adam Christing. All Rights Reserved. Privacy Policy . Terms & Conditions .

  • EASY BOOKING FORM

Resources | Storytelling | Strategy

50 powerful quotes to start your presentation.

opening speech quotes

Written by Kai Xin Koh

opening speech quotes

When was the last time you attended a conference where the speaker didn’t just say: “Oh hi, my name is XYZ and today, I’ll be speaking to you about Topic X”?

Great stories possess riveting narrative arcs that begin strong and end strong. We’ve written at length about some of the best ways to end your presentation , but how does one design a presentation to start without sounding too cliche?

One of the most powerful ways to begin a presentation is to start by sharing a powerful and memorable quote that relates to the message of your talk.

Powerful quotes have so much power on your presentation. Not only does it help reinforce your message, it also helps boost your credibility since it implied the quote is ‘agreeing’ with your statement.

Take this TED talk by Andrew Solomon for example. Notice how he skilfully uses a quote from a book by Emily Dickinson to set the stage for his numerous anecdotes regarding the topic on Depression in his presentation:

Hence, if you’re looking to follow suit and start your next presentation strong with a powerful quote, we’ve got you covered. Here, we compiled a list of 50 quotes that you can use to boost your next presentation.

50 Powerful Quotes To Start Your Presentation:

1)   “ The secret of getting ahead is getting started.” –  Mark Twain

2) “Yesterday’s home runs don’t win today’s games.” –  Babe Ruth

3) “ If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough.” –  Albert Einstein

4) “ If you’re too comfortable, it’s time to move on. Terrified of what’s next? You’re on the right track.” –  Susan Fales Hill

5) “ Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning.” –  Bill Gates

6) “ You can’t look at the competition and say you’re going to do it better. You have to look at the competition and say you’re going to do it differently.” –  Steve Jobs

7) “ Make every detail perfect and limit the number of details to perfect.” –  Jack Dorsey

8) “ Do the one thing you think you cannot do. Fail at it. Try again. Do better the second time. The only people who never tumble are those who never mount the high wire. This is your moment. Own it.” –  Oprah Winfrey

9) “ Your smile is your logo, your personality is your business card, how you leave others feeling after an experience with you becomes your trademark.” –  Jay Danzie

10)  “It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it. If you think about that, you’ll do things differently.” –  Warren Buffett

11)  “Some entrepreneurs think how can I make a lot of money? But a better way is to think how can I make people’s lives a lot better? If you get it right, the money will come.” –  Richard Branson

12)  “When Henry Ford made cheap, reliable cars people said, ‘Nah, what’s wrong with a horse? ’ That was a huge bet he made, and it worked.” –  Elon Musk

13)  “There are two types of people who will tell you that you cannot make a difference in this world: those who are afraid to try and those who are afraid you will succeed.” –  Ray Goforth

14)   “Keep on going, and the chances are that you will stumble on something, perhaps when you are least expecting it. I never heard of anyone ever stumbling on something sitting down.” –  Charles F. Kettering

15)  “People rarely buy what they need. They buy what they want.”   – Seth Godin

16)  “Please think about your legacy, because you’re writing it every day.”   – Gary Vaynerchuck

17)  “The golden rule for every business man is this: Put yourself in your customer’s place.” –  Orison Swett Marden

18)  “A successful man is one who can lay a firm foundation with the bricks others have thrown at him.”   –  David Brinkley

19)  “Everyone is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will spend its whole life believing it is stupid.”   –  Einstein

20)  “The problem with the rat race is that even if you win, you’re still a rat.”   –  Lilly Tomlin

21)  “ When you run a part of the relay and pass on the baton, there is no sense of unfinished business in your mind. There is just the sense of having done your part to the best of your ability. That is it. The hope is to pass on the baton to somebody who will run faster and run a better marathon.”   – N. R. Narayana Murthy

22)  “Whatever you’re thinking, think bigger.” – Tony Hsieh

23)  “When you find an idea that you can’t stop thinking about, that’s probably a good one to pursue.”   – Josh James

24)  “What would you do if you’re not afraid?” –  Sheryl Sandberg

25)  “Don’t worry about failure, you only have to be right once.”   – Drew Houston

26)  “When I’m old and dying. I plan to look back on my life and say ‘Wow, an adventure’ not, ‘Wow, I sure felt safe’” – Tom Preston Werner

27)  “80% of your sales comes from 20% of your clients.”   – Vilfredo Pareto

28)  “You just have to pay attention to what people need and what has not been done.”   – Russell Simmons

29)  “We are really competing against ourselves, we have no control over how other people perform.”   – Pete Cashmore

30)  “I skate to where the puck is going to be, not where it has been.”   – Wayne Gretzy

31)  “Always remember, your focus determines your reality.”   – George Lucas

32)  “If people like you they’ll listen to you, but if they trust you they’ll do business with you.”   – Zig Ziglar

33)  “Words may inspire but action creates change.”   – Simon Sinek

34)  “It isn’t what we say or think that denies us, but what we do.”   – Jane Austen

35)  “Get action. Do things; be sane; don’t fritter away your time; create, act, take a place wherever you are and be someone; get action.”   – Theodore Roosevelt

36)  “There is only one boss. The customer.” – Sam Walton

37)  “Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time. We are the ones we’ve been waiting for. We are the change that we seek.” – Barack Obama

38)  “You have to go wholeheartedly into anything in order to achieve anything worth having.” –  Frank Lloyd Wright

39)  “It always seems impossible until it’s done.” – Nelson Mandela

40)  “Some people feel the rain. Others just get wet.” – Bob Marley

41)  “There is no great genius without some touch of madness.”    – Seneca

42)  “If you think you are too small to make an impact try going to bed with a mosquito in the room.” – Ekaterina Walter

43)   “If you just work on stuff that you like and you’re passionate about, you don’t have to have a master plan with how things will play out.” – Mark Zuckerberg

44)   “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” –  Thomas Edison

45)  “Things may come to those who wait, but only the things left by those who hustle.”  – Abraham Lincoln

46)  “Don’t build links. Build relationships.”   – Rand Fishkin

47)   “100 percent of the shots you don’t take, don’t go in.”   –  Wayne Gretzky, Hockey Legend

48)  “If you’ve got an idea, start today. There’s no better time than now to get going. That doesn’t mean quit your job and jump into your idea 100 percent from day one, but there’s always small progress that can be made to start the movement.” – Kevin Systrom, Founder of Instagram

49)   “Good business leaders create a vision, articulate the vision, passionately own the vision, and relentlessly drive it to completion.”   –  Jack Welch, Former CEO of GE

50)    “You must be very patient, very persistent. The world isn’t going to shower gold coins on you just because you have a good idea. You’re going to have to work like crazy to bring that idea to the attention of people. They’re not going to buy it unless they know about it.”  –   Herb Kelleher, Founder of Southwest Airlines.

There you have it!

Phew! – now you have an additional 50 powerful quotes that you can add in your presentation arsenal. Leave an unforgettable impression on your presentation with these quotes starting today!

Comment down your favourite quote. And let us know if you have any that we didn’t add to the list!

Article Written By: Kai Xin Koh

You may also like….

Val Yap: Delivering Success Through Effective Communication

Val Yap: Delivering Success Through Effective Communication

by Kai Xin Koh

Success is not dictated by the hard work of one person alone. A great leader is also a great story-teller because effective communication is the foundation of any successful organisation.

Infographic Template Editor Site Review: Venngage

Infographic Template Editor Site Review: Venngage

Introduction If you’re...

How to Compress PowerPoint Presentations in 2023 : Complete Guide For Mac and Windows

How to Compress PowerPoint Presentations in 2023 : Complete Guide For Mac and Windows

by Eugene Cheng

Imagine this - it’s late at night and you’re finishing up your last few slides for your big presentation tomorrow. You’ve done your final check and...

Sign Up for Winning With Stories!

  • First Name *
  • Name This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

LOGO

Ace the Presentation

Quotes to Start Your Presentation

55 Powerful and Inspiring Quotes to Start Your Presentation

Have you ever stopped to think about the best strategies to start a presentation and gain the audience’s attention or interlocutor? Did you know that using motivational phrases to create a presentation is a great alternative?

It doesn’t matter if you’re a student and you’re presenting a paper, or if you’re a renowned speaker. Knowing how to speak well in public implies several factors, and at any moment of your speech is a crucial moment to ensure that the presentation is successful.

According to businessman and filmmaker Peter Davies,

“Motivation is like food for the brain; you can’t have enough at a meal. Motivation needs continuous and regular recharges to nurture deep and transform a human being into a winner.”

Among the techniques you can and should use, the citation should undoubtedly be among the main in your list.

A relevant quote, which is aligned with the theme of its presentation, tied to the purpose and objective, creates a strong connection with the audience, often arousing interest and attention.

An unforgettable introduction is the first step in starting a presentation or speech. Often, we are focused only on the content presented, completely forgetting that, for the public to pay attention, it is necessary to arrest them from the beginning.

5 Best Techniques to start a Presentation or Speech

  • Quote someone else

Opening your presentation with a relevant quote can help set the whole tone for the rest of your speech. However, when making the quote, you need to remember two essential things: a) Quote the source of the sentence and b) “Tie it” to the central theme of the presentation.

However, an important point to consider when speaking in public: Citations will depend on the style of the audience, and the moment the presenter lives. Do not push too hard or adopt a tone of voice or language that does not suit the public.

  • Don’t be afraid to use humor.

A touch of humor is a great way to break the ice with the audience, relieve tension and connect with everyone. As the example given above quote, the key to success is making the joke related to the topic being discussed.

If this tip is not your style, you can address the other information in this article.

During the presentation, telling a story is another very clever way to start a speech.  After all, stories compellingly connect people.

But, as in the case of jokes, your story needs to bridge or contain a message that can link the introduction to the presentation

‘s content.

An excellent way to use storytelling is by using an “imaginary” scenario, but that is your life story; this will leave the participants interested and can identify better with you.

  • Be bold and use a striking phrase.

This technique consists of giving a brief thought-provoking statement, which will set the tone of the presentation theme, especially if this is said with a strong voice, which draws attention and leaves the group ready to hear what’s next.

Therefore, when you start the speech, you can speak a bold and striking phrase and use the silence technique later, increasing the effect of the phrase.

In this sense, an example of an excellent way to catch the public’s attention is to say the sentence and pause, up to 10 seconds. 

This plan will make the audience anxious and attentive.

  • Cite notable statistics

Using surprising statistics will show the public an immediate value in their knowledge, leaving them more interested throughout their presentation. 

It also helps stimulate the audience’s thoughts; this technique works very well when the facts reported are not common knowledge but are nevertheless relevant and stimulating.

Please make sure to be brief in the opening statement, so your opening won’t get too many easy-to-forget details.

1. “Success is most often achieved by those who don’t know that failure is inevitable.” Coco Chanel

We are often afraid to start a project no matter how much we have ideas that are outside the box, and when compared to other people, we thought that this would not be successful. 

This phrase from Coco Chanel helps us understand that to be successful, and we need to subject ourselves to error sometimes.

2.  “No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.” Eleanor Roosevelt

We have here a phrase from one of the strong women of history known as the defender of human rights unless we identify ourselves with what people think of us; none has power over what we are and want to be.

3. “Failure is another steppingstone to greatness.” Oprah Winfrey

With the illustrious phrase of another inspiring woman Oprah Winfrey, it became clear how error always has a positive side; getting it right is not always what we need from error comes the improvement of an idea that can continuously be improved.

4. “The whole secret of a successful life is to find out what is one’s destiny to do, and then do it.” Henry Ford

If we discover what makes us happy, we can always succeed because happiness is the path of inspiration that leads us to unimaginable ways.

5. “A belief is only a thought you keep thinking.” Abraham Hicks

Beliefs are socialized since we were born, depending on the socio-cultural context and the people around us. Anything is possible if you think so.

6. If you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, change your attitude. Maya Angelou

Often we can criticize something or behavior when we think we can do better; Angelou encourages us to get up and do it. If we still can’t change, maybe we have to change our attitude towards the situation that bothers us.

7. If you cannot do great things, do small things in a great way. Napoleon Hill

Sometimes we think that success comes from great attitudes, and from thinking so much about an idea that surpasses all the others, we stand by and do nothing. Napoleon Hill encourages us to start step-by-step and what matters here is how we make it small or big.

8. Innovation, as I understand it, is both about doing different things as well as doing things differently.” Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw

Sometimes we need to get out of our comfort zone, and for that, we need not only to experience things we’ve never done before, but the way can also lead us to new paths.

9. “Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma – which is living with the results of other people’s thinking.” Steve Jobs

When we choose the course we want to take in college, we often choose a course that our parents choose, and that doesn’t make us happy, which we shouldn’t do because we are supposed to live for ourselves and our happiness.

10. “Always remember that you are unique. Just like everyone else.” Margaret Mead

Every human being is unique in its way, and our particular way of being cannot be compared to any other. Hence we need not be afraid when we do something new, even if someone else has already done it.

55 Powerful and Inspiring Quotes to Start Your Presentation

Have you ever stopped to think about the best strategies to start a presentation and gain the audience’s attention or interlocutor? Did you know that using motivational phrases to create a presentation is a great alternative? It doesn’t matter if you’re a student and you’re presenting a paper, or if you’re a renowned speaker. Knowing…

Click Here to Read More…

5 QUICK TIPS ON HOW TO GIVE AN EFFECTIVE MOTIVATIONAL SPEECH

5 QUICK TIPS ON HOW TO GIVE AN EFFECTIVE MOTIVATIONAL SPEECH

This post is part 3 of a series of posts that where we will be sharing with you quick tips on how to deliver all types of speech that we mentioned in our most-read post on this blog, 10 Types of Speeches. Instead of just telling you that there is a motivational speech or an…

26 Motivational and Inspirational Quotes on Life, Success, and Positive Thinking to Make Your Day

26 Motivational and Inspirational Quotes on Life, Success, and Positive Thinking to Make Your Day

If you came here looking for short, but powerful motivational and inspirational quotes that will lift you up when you are feeling discouraged, or share a pearl of wisdom and help you achieve success in your endeavors, then you have come to the right place. Motivational and Inspirational Quotes have a great effect on us….

11. “Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap but by the seeds that you plant.” Robert Louis Stevenson

This means that sometimes we will have bad days and things will be difficult, but this does not mean that we will not have good days, so we must always be kind and cheerful.

12. “Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.” Ralph Waldo Emerson

It’s much easier to follow the path that many people have taken may seem safer. Yet, here Emerson suggests that choosing a direction is knowledge, adventure, or whatever it is we decided to learn new things and share with other people that would be the trail.

13. “People do not decide to become extraordinary. They decide to accomplish extraordinary things.” Edmund Hillary

People aren’t born brilliant. They make decisions and make choices that push outside the box and are exceptional.

14. “Always dream and shoot higher than you know you can do. Don’t bother to be better than your contemporaries or predecessors. Try to be better than yourself.” William Faulkner

Faulkner encourages us to be our competence, neither that of descendants or ascenders nor anyone but ourselves. Hold your hand and go hard.

15. “Designing a presentation without an audience in mind is like writing a love letter and addressing it ‘to whom it may concern.” Ken Haemer

You have got to prepare yourself for whichever situations or people you’re going to come across in different environments and conditions so that you don’t do things that don’t make sense.

16. Some people feel the rain. Others get wet.” Bob Marley

We can interpret this Bob Marley phrase as when faced with a chaotic situation, some people will despair, and others will calm down, focus, and look at the problem as an opportunity. Who the hell are you?

17. “When I’m old and dying. I plan to look back on my life and say ‘Wow, an adventure’ not, ‘Wow, I sure felt safe.’” Tom Preston Werner

Werner means to live your life without fears and live your life intensely because you never know how it will be tomorrow.

18. Get action. Do things; be sane; don’t fritter away your time; create, act, take place wherever you are and be someone; get action.” Theodore Roosevelt

Roosevelt encourages us to get better lives by doing something, turning into reality our dreams by consistently taking action.

19. “Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time. We are the ones we’ve been waiting for. We are the change that we seek.” Barack Obama

It’s for no one but ourselves that we need to improve or reinvent ourselves.

20. You have to go wholeheartedly into anything to achieve anything worth having.” Frank Lloyd Wright

Wright tells us that following our heart is the best way to reach out to more incredible things in life; anything we put, our real feelings and natural energy will glow.

21. “It always seems impossible until it’s done.” Nelson Mandela

With this simple phrase, Mandela brings us a crucial message to live an extraordinary life; when we start by somewhere and are not there yet, it seems unreachable but never is if we don’t give up trying.

22. “There are only two days of the year when you can do nothing: one is called yesterday and the other tomorrow” Dalai Lama

Don’t leave for tomorrow what you can do today; live each day as if it were your last.

23. “In the end, everything works out, and if it didn’t work, it’s because it hasn’t come to an end” Fernando Sabino

What Sabino means is you have to be patient because someday, our time to shine will come.

24. “The pessimist sees difficulty at every opportunity. The optimist sees opportunity at every difficulty” Winston Churchill

When we sync our minds to positive thinking, anything we face is reachable, and we get things done because everything turns into an opportunity to learn and grow.

26. “You have to be a protagonist. You can’t just listen to the band play, and you have to be part of the band” Sonia Hess

In life, we face many situations that we work and live with people, but we don’t need to be ordinary because we are not; we have to show and give our best in anything we do.

27. Our failures are sometimes more fruitful than our successes” Henry Ford

With mistakes, we learn, we improve, and one day we reach perfection.

28. “Change your mind and change your world” Norman Vincent Peale

If we have an open mind, we will find that our way of thinking is not always the right one, and when we change our review, we will be able to put it into practice in our lives.

29. “One day you must stop dreaming, take the plans out of the drawer and somehow start” Amyr Klink

Klink encourages us to materialize any ideas or dreams we may have and not spend days only daydreaming about them.

30. “The greatest discovery of all time is that a person can change, simply by changing his attitude” Oprah Winfrey

Sometimes the attitude we face in certain realities is the ones that prevent us from enjoying more extraordinary things in life. So you may want to think about some philosophy or way of thinking that you could use a change.

31. “Keep in mind that your desire to achieve success is more important than anything” Abraham Lincoln

What Lincoln means is that we must work hard to achieve our goals and put them as priorities in life if we want to achieve them.

32. “Be content to act. Leave the speech to others” Baltasar Gracián

This means to live your life no matter what other people think; if you are happy with it, be gentle with yourself.

33. “To achieve success, you need to accept all the challenges that lie ahead of you. You can’t just accept the ones you prefer” Mike Gafka

Gafka means that Challenges turn us better if we submit to the lesson they have to teach us.

34. “A successful warrior is an average man, but with a sharp focus like a laser beam” Bruce Lee

Lee means that even though a warrior is seen with prestige, he is a regular man. Still, the difference between them and what he is, is how he put attention to what he wants, and we can compare that analogy with daily situations such us when we see some people more successful than others.

35. “Logic can lead from point A to point B. Imagination can lead anywhere” Albert Einstein

Things go far beyond what they seem to be, don’t focus on the obvious, and also see subtexts.

36. “The task is not so much to see what no one has seen, but to think what no one has thought about what everyone sees.” Arthur Schopenhauer

Schopenhauer gives us a lesson about creativity; most of the time, we look for new ideas that no one ever thought about; however, imagination can recreate helpfully something that already exists.

37. “It is much better to set out in search of great conquests, even exposing oneself to failure, than to align oneself with the poor in spirit, who neither enjoy much nor suffer much, because they live in a grey gloom, where they know neither victory nor defeat.” Theodore Roosevelt

Living adventurously and risky is much more satisfying and rewarding than having a monotonous and safe life.

38. “What we predict rarely occurs; what we least expect usually happens.” Benjamin Disraeli

This means always to expect the unexpected.

39. “Unless we change our way of thinking, we will not be able to solve the problems caused by the way we get used to seeing the world.” Albert Einstein

Einstein encourages us to see situations more dynamically because we socialized in a certain way with ease; our thoughts can become a cycle of ignorance.

40. “Persistence is the least path to success.” Charles Chaplin

Chaplin means that we insist and don’t give up on what we want to do. Indeed, we are going to make it no matter how much time it takes.

7 Steps for Writing an Inspiring Graduation Speech 

7 Steps for Writing an Inspiring Graduation Speech 

You were chosen to make the graduation speech of your class, you were pleased by the trust placed by your colleagues, but now you face a problem: the blank page of Word waits to be filled with inspirational words. First thing, breathe out and relax; everyone who has ever made a graduation speech has faced…

3 KEY Things For Delivering a Successful Speech

3 KEY Things For Delivering a Successful Speech

Have you ever had to give a speech and have no idea how to direct their thoughts or start talking? In this article, we will discuss in a straightforward way how to work the oratory to develop the ability to speak well with different audiences, arousing their attention, respect, and provoking reflections. Speeches are moments…

41. “To discover consists in looking at what everyone is seeing and thinking something different.” Roger von Oech

This means that we have to think like no one ever thought or even imagined to discover something.

42. “Sometimes we feel that what we do is only a drop of water in the sea. But the sea would be smaller if it lacked a drop”. Mother Teresa de Calcuta

We all make a difference in this world; every soul counts, and every opinion counts either. Please don’t give up on sharing what you got because it is critical.

43. “The more our knowledge increases, the more evident is our ignorance.” John F. Kennedy

The more things you learn, the more things you need to learn because no one can know anything about anything.

44. When everything seems to be going against you, remember that the plane takes off against the wind, not in his favor.” Henry Ford

Remember that Henry Ford suggested the car model we use today back in his time, and nobody but him believed it was possible, he had nobody but himself to hold hands. Don’t give up.

45. “No matter how slow you go, as long as you don’t stop.” Confucius

Do things in your time and never give up.

46. “An entrepreneur sees opportunities where others see only problems.” Michael Gerber

Someone who sees a chance to grow in any situation is a winner, and he has nothing to lose because, in any position of life, we can get something that could be what we didn’t expect.

47. Choose a job you like, and you won’t have to work a single day of your life.” Confucius

If you choose a job that you love, you don’t feel like you’re working; you’re doing a leisure activity.

48. “Success is not the key to happiness. Happiness is the key to success. If you love what you do, you will succeed.” Albert Schweitzer

As Nga, a rapper, says, there is no way to happiness because happiness is when we vibrate good feelings, especially do things we love, life becomes more accessible.

49. “Don’t play games you don’t understand, even if you see many other people making money with them.” Tony Hsieh

Don’t do things through other people’s influence to make your life easier.

50. “Nothing great has ever been achieved without enthusiasm.” Ralph Waldo Emerson

When we do things without good energy, they can easily be ruined.

51. “The thoughts we choose to have are the tools we use to paint the picture of our lives.” Louise Hay

Your way of thinking will determine the course of our lives, which means always be open to new forms of thinking so you can live in a more inclusive World.

52. “Success is born of wanting, determination, and persistence in reaching a goal. Even not reaching the target, who seeks and overcomes obstacles, at least will do admirable things.” José de Alencar

What Alencar means is that when we want something, even if we don’t get what we were thinking at first, we always get something.

53. “To act, that is the true intelligence. I will be whatever I want. But I have to want whatever it is. Success lies in being successful, not in being able to succeed. Palace conditions have any wide land, but where will the palace be if they don’t do it there?” Fernando Pessoa

Pessoa says that when we want something, conditions don’t determine if we thrive or not, but our vibration towards it and that will makes us anything we desire.

54. “You can get anything you want in life if you help other people get what they want.”  Zig Ziglar

If you are kind to other people, they will give back in the future.

55. I like the impossible because there is less competition.” Walt Disney

Walt means that the unthinkable doesn’t exist; most people can’t perseverance, so he does because few people can.

How you open your presentation determines how interested the public will be in what will be said afterward. So, when thinking about how to start a speech or presentation, evaluate if your introduction is completely bland; this will be the initial message that the audience will get from the speaker and the display itself.

Reference and Further Reading

Ace The Presentation. Amadebai, E. 11 Best Body Language Tips for Engaging Presentations.

Ace The Presentation. Amadebai, E. 120 Persuasive Speech Topics.

Ace The Presentation. Amadebai, E. 8 Awesome Persuasive Speech Techniques.

Ezine Articles. Toney, B (2011). Key Elements of a Persuasive Speech.

Similar Posts

11 Tips for Delivering Entertaining Virtual Presentations

11 Tips for Delivering Entertaining Virtual Presentations

A Virtual Presentation is when the Speaker Delivers the Presentation remotely, and for some reason, it is not necessary to meet in person. For instance, when you want to make a presentation to people from different countries or physical locations.  Virtual Presentations cuts the costs by 50% or even more, which is why they are…

11 Best Body Language Tips For Engaging Presentations (#11 is Underrated)

11 Best Body Language Tips For Engaging Presentations (#11 is Underrated)

Growing up, we were always taught how we should have manners while talking to others and that there were some things we could not do in front of people like sprawling or even putting our elbows on the table while eating because it was rude. In the examples above, the rudeness comes from gestures, not…

Why Mastering Public Speaking Skills Will Improve Your Life – 4 Examples.

Why Mastering Public Speaking Skills Will Improve Your Life – 4 Examples.

Public speaking skills are the most important skills for all those who intend to inspire, influence, lead, support and educate others. It’s perhaps the oldest and most respected skill in our history as a species, and that alone tells you how important it is to keep improving your public speaking skills. Public Speaking Skills and…

Consultative Speech Style Examples

Consultative Speech Style Examples

Are you looking for examples of consultative speech style? Learn how this style can be used to effectively communicate, enhance public speaking and social skills, and assist with career development. In our article we will give contextual illustrations and tips on using this style in conversational situations! Examples of consultative speech include active listening, asking…

The 7 Basic Elements of Public Speaking

The 7 Basic Elements of Public Speaking

Remember that time you had to present a topic in front of a crowd? Probably it was a proposal at work or an oral report in grade school. You took the time to prepare and gather materials, after which you climbed the podium and started talking. There are seven basic elements of public speaking that…

Status.net

How to Start a Speech: Tips and Examples for a Captivating Opening

By Status.net Editorial Team on December 12, 2023 — 11 minutes to read

When preparing a speech, knowing your audience is key. To tailor your message, consider their interests, demographics, and needs.

Choosing the Right Opening Line

Finding the perfect opening line for your speech is crucial in grabbing your audience’s attention. A strong opening line sets the stage for the points you want to make and helps you establish a connection with your listeners. Here are a few tips and examples to help you choose the right opening line.

1. Start with a question

Engage your audience from the very beginning by asking them a thought-provoking question related to your topic. This approach encourages them to think, and it can create a sense of anticipation about what’s coming next.

  • “Have you ever wondered how much time we spend on our phones every day?”

2. Share a personal story

A relatable personal story can create an emotional connection with your audience. Make sure your story is short, relevant to your speech, and ends with a clear point.

  • “When I was a child, my grandmother used to tell me that every kind deed we do plants a seed of goodness in the world. It was this philosophy that inspired me to start volunteering.”

3. Use a quote or a statistic

Incorporate a powerful quote or an intriguing statistic at the outset of your speech to engage your audience and provide context for your topic.

  • “As the great Maya Angelou once said, ‘People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.'”

4. Make them laugh

Injecting a little humor into your opening line puts everyone at ease and makes your speech more memorable. Just make sure your joke is relevant and doesn’t offend your audience.

  • “They say an apple a day keeps the doctor away, but if the doctor is cute, forget the fruit!”

5. Paint a mental picture

Draw your audience in by describing a vivid scene or painting an illustration in their minds. This creates an immersive experience that makes it easier for your audience to follow your speech.

  • “Picture this: you’re walking down the beach, and you look out on the horizon. The sun is setting, and the sky is a breathtaking canvas of reds, oranges, and pinks.”

Using a Personal Story

Sharing a personal story can be a highly effective way to engage your audience from the very beginning of your speech. When you open your talk with a powerful, relatable story, it helps create an emotional connection with your listeners, making them more invested in what you have to say.

Think about an experience from your life that is relevant to the topic of your speech. Your story doesn’t have to be grand or dramatic, but it should be clear and vivid. Include enough detail to paint a picture in your audience’s minds, but keep it concise and on point.

The key to successfully using a personal story is to make it relatable. Choose a situation that your audience can empathize with or easily understand. For instance, if you’re giving a speech about overcoming adversity, you could talk about a time where you faced a seemingly insurmountable challenge and overcame it.

Make sure to connect your story to the main point or theme of your speech. After sharing your experience, explain how it relates to the topic at hand, and let your audience see the relevance to their own lives. This will make your speech more impactful and show your listeners why your personal story holds meaning.

Making a Shocking Statement

Starting your speech with a shocking statement can instantly grab your audience’s attention. This technique works especially well when your speech topic relates to a hot-button issue or a controversial subject. Just make sure that the statement is relevant and true, as false claims may damage your credibility.

For example, “Believe it or not, 90% of startups fail during their first five years in the market.” This statement might surprise your listeners and make them more receptive to your ideas on how to avoid pitfalls and foster a successful business.

So next time you’re crafting a speech, consider opening with a powerful shocking statement. It could be just the thing to get your audience sitting up and paying full attention. (Try to keep your shocking statement relevant to your speech topic and factual to enhance your credibility.)

Using Humor

Humor can be an excellent way to break the ice and grab your audience’s attention. Opening your speech with a funny story or a joke can make a memorable first impression. Just be sure to keep it relevant to your topic and audience.

A good joke can set a light-hearted tone, lead into the importance of effective time management, and get your audience engaged from the start.

When using humor in your speech, here are a few tips to keep in mind:

  • Be relatable: Choose a story or joke that your audience can easily relate to. It will be more engaging and connect your listeners to your message.
  • Keep it appropriate: Make sure the humor fits the occasion and audience. Stay away from controversial topics and avoid offending any particular group.
  • Practice your delivery: Timing and delivery are essential when telling a joke. Practice saying it out loud and adjust your pacing and tone of voice to ensure your audience gets the joke.
  • Go with the flow: If your joke flops or doesn’t get the reaction you were hoping for, don’t panic or apologize. Simply move on to the next part of your speech smoothly, and don’t let it shake your confidence.
  • Don’t overdo it: While humor can be useful in capturing your audience’s attention, remember that you’re not a stand-up comedian. Use it sparingly and focus on getting your message across clearly and effectively.

Incorporating a Quote

When you want to start your speech with a powerful quote, ensure that the quote is relevant to your topic. Choose a quote from a credible source, such as a famous historical figure, a well-known author, or a respected expert in your field. This will not only grab your audience’s attention but also establish your speech’s credibility.

For example, if you’re giving a speech about resilience, you might use this quote by Nelson Mandela: “The greatest glory in living lies not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall.”

Once you’ve found the perfect quote, integrate it smoothly into your speech’s introduction. You can briefly introduce the source of the quote, providing context for why their words are significant. For example:

Nelson Mandela, an inspirational leader known for his perseverance, once said: “The greatest glory in living lies not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall.”

When you’re incorporating a quote in your speech, practice your delivery to ensure it has the intended impact. Focus on your tone, pace, and pronunciation. By doing so, you can convey the quote’s meaning effectively and connect with your audience emotionally.

Lastly, connect the quote to your main points by briefly explaining how it relates to the subject matter of your speech. By creating a natural transition from the quote to your topic, you can maintain your audience’s interest and set the stage for a compelling speech.

In our resilience example, this could look like:

“This quote by Mandela beautifully illustrates the power of resilience. Today, I want to share with you some stories of remarkable individuals who, like Mandela, overcame obstacles and rose every time they fell. Through their experiences, we might learn how to cultivate our own resilience and make the most of life’s challenges.”

Starting with a Question

Opening your speech with a question can be a great way to engage your audience from the start. This strategy encourages your listeners to think and become active participants in your presentation. Your opening question should be related to your core message, sparking their curiosity, and setting the stage for the following content. Here are a few examples:

  • For a motivational speech : “Have you ever wondered what you would do if you couldn’t fail?”
  • For a business presentation : “What’s the biggest challenge your team faces daily, and how can we overcome it?”
  • For an educational talk : “How does the way we use technology today impact the future of our society?”

When choosing the right starting question, consider your audience. You want to ask something that is relevant to their experiences and interests. The question should be interesting enough to draw their attention and resonate with their emotions. For instance, if you’re presenting to a group of entrepreneurs, gear your question towards entrepreneurship, and so on.

To boost your question’s impact, consider using rhetorical questions. These don’t require a verbal response, but get your audience thinking about their experiences or opinions. Here’s an example:

  • For an environmental speech : “What kind of world do we want to leave for our children?”

After posing your question, take a moment to let it sink in, and gauge the audience’s reaction. You can also use a brief pause to give the listeners time to think about their answers before moving on with your speech.

Acknowledging the Occasion

When starting a speech, you can acknowledge the occasion that brought everyone together. This helps create a connection with your audience and sets the stage for the rest of your speech. Make sure to mention the event name, its purpose, and any relevant individuals or groups you would like to thank for organizing it. For example:

“Hello everyone, and welcome to the 10th annual Charity Gala Dinner. I’m truly grateful to the fundraising committee for inviting me to speak tonight.”

After addressing the event itself, include a brief personal touch to show your connection with the topic or the audience. This helps the audience relate to you and gain interest in what you have to say. Here’s an example:

“As a long-time supporter of this cause, I am honored to share my thoughts on how we can continue making a difference in our community.”

Next, give a brief overview of your speech so the audience knows what to expect. This sets the context and helps them follow your points. You could say something like:

“Tonight, I’ll be sharing my experiences volunteering at the local food bank and discussing the impact of your generous donations.”

Frequently Asked Questions

What are some effective opening lines for speeches.

A powerful opening line will grab your audience’s attention and set the stage for the rest of your speech. Some effective opening lines include:

  • Start with a bold statement: “The world needs your creativity now more than ever.”
  • Share a surprising fact: “Did you know that the average person spends (…) years of their life at work?”
  • Pose a thought-provoking question: “What would you attempt to do if you knew you could not fail?”
  • Tell a short, engaging story: “When I was 10 years old, I discovered my passion for baking in my grandmother’s kitchen.”

Can you provide examples of engaging introductions for speeches?

  • Use humor: “As a kid, I believed that 7 pm bedtime was a form of torture. Now, as an adult, I find myself dreaming of 7 pm bedtime.”
  • Share a personal experience: “On a trip to Italy, I found myself lost in the winding streets of a small village. It was there, amidst my confusion, that I stumbled upon the best gelato I’d ever tasted.”
  • Use an analogy: “Starting a new business is like taking a journey into the unknown. There will be challenges to overcome, and you’ll need resilience, determination, and a strong compass.”

Which speech styles can make a powerful impact on the audience?

Different speech styles will resonate with different audiences. Some styles to consider include:

  • Inspirational: Motivate your audience to take action or overcome challenges.
  • Storytelling: Share personal experiences or anecdotes to illustrate your points and keep listeners engaged.
  • Educational: Provide useful information and insights to help your audience learn or grow.
  • Persuasive: Present a compelling argument to convince your audience to adopt a particular perspective or take specific action.

How do successful speakers establish a connection with their listeners?

Establishing a connection with your listeners is key to delivering an impactful speech. Some ways to connect with your audience include:

  • Show empathy: Demonstrating understanding and concern for your audience’s feelings and experiences will generate a sense of trust and connection.
  • Be relatable: Share personal stories or examples that allow your audience to see themselves in your experiences, thus making your speech more relatable.
  • Keep it genuine: Avoid overrehearsing or coming across as scripted. Instead, strive for authenticity and flexibility in your delivery.
  • Encourage participation: Engaging your audience through questions, activities, or conversation can help build rapport and make them feel more involved.

What are some techniques for maintaining a friendly and professional tone in speeches?

To maintain a friendly and professional tone in your speeches, consider these tips:

  • Balance humor and seriousness: Use humor to lighten the mood and engage your audience, but make sure to also cover the serious points in your speech.
  • Speak naturally: Use your everyday vocabulary and avoid jargon or overly formal language when possible.
  • Show respect: Acknowledge differing opinions and experiences, and treat your audience with courtesy and fairness.
  • Provide useful information: Offer valuable insights and solutions to your audience’s concerns, ensuring they leave your speech feeling more informed and empowered.
  • Emotional Intelligence (EQ) in Leadership [Examples, Tips]
  • Effective Nonverbal Communication in the Workplace (Examples)
  • Empathy: Definition, Types, and Tips for Effective Practice
  • How to Improve Key Communication Skills
  • Examples of Empathy (and 38 Empathy Statements)
  • What is Self Compassion? (Exercises, Methods, Examples)
  • Tips & news

101 Quotes to inspire speakers

opening speech quotes

Average: 4.5 ( 2 votes)

101 Quotes for Inspiring Public Speaker

Inspiration sometimes runs dry, and for presenters feeling uninspired can lead to a poor performance.

Where do you go when you need a bit of extra lift?  Sometimes the well thought out words of history’s very best orators can be just the ticket. 

From drafting speeches, to calming your nerves right before you step into the spotlight , we’ve collected the top inspiring 101 quotes from thought leaders around the world.

Check nuggets of wisdom from Dale Carnegie , Mark Twain, Tony Robbins and Winston Churchill (we’ve even thrown in some William Butler Yeats and Seth Godin for good measure.) 

Continue reading more quotes below or  download the eBook from SlideShare . 

“If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader.” – John Quincy Adams ( Tweet this )

“There are certain things in which mediocrity is not to be endured, such as poetry, music, painting, public speaking.” - Jean de la Bruyere ( Tweet this )

“If you think you can do a thing or think you can’t do a thing, you’re right.” – Henry Ford ( Tweet this )

“The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires.” – William Arthur Ward ( Tweet this )

“People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” – Maya Angelou ( Tweet this )

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, concerned citizens can change world. Indeed it is the only thing that ever has.” –  Margaret Mead ( Tweet this )

“You can speak well if your tongue can deliver the message of your heart.” – John Ford  ( Tweet this )

“Be still when you have nothing to say; when genuine passion moves you, say what you’ve got to say, and say it hot.” – D. H. Lawrence  ( Tweet this )

“Let thy speech be better than silence, or be silent.” – Dionysius Of Halicarnassus  ( Tweet this )

“What we say is important… for in most cases the mouth speaks what the heart is full of.” – Jim Beggs   ( Tweet this )

“If you can’t write your message in a sentence, you can’t say it in an hour.” – Dianna Booher  ( Tweet this )

“There are always three speeches, for every one you actually gave. The one you practiced, the one you gave, and the one you wish you gave.” – Dale Carnegie ( Tweet this )

“It usually takes me more than three weeks to prepare a good impromptu speech.” – Mark Twain ( Tweet this )

“A good orator is pointed and impassioned.” – Marcus T. Cicero  ( Tweet this )

“Oratory is the power to talk people out of their sober and natural opinions.” – Joseph Chatfield  ( Tweet this)

“He who wants to persuade should put his trust not in the right argument, but in the right word. The power of sound has always been greater than the power of sense.” – Joseph Conrad ( Tweet this )

“There are three things to aim at in public speaking: first, to get into your subject, then to get your subject into yourself, and lastly, to get your subject into the heart of your audience.” – Alexander Gregg ( Tweet this )

“The success of your presentation will be judged not by the knowledge you send but by what the listener receives.” – Lilly Walters  ( Tweet this )

“Best way to conquer stage fright is to know what you’re talking about.” – Michael H. Mescon  ( Tweet this )

“There are only two types of speakers in the world. 1. The nervous and 2. Liars.” – Mark Twain  ( Tweet this )

“Before anything else, preparation is the key to success.” – Alexander Graham Bell  ( Tweet this )

“90% of how well the talk will go is determined before the speaker steps on the platform.” – Somers White ( Tweet this )

“It takes one hour of preparation for each minute of presentation time.” – Wayne Burgraff  ( Tweet this )

“The most precious things in speech are the... pauses.” – Sir Ralph Richardson ( Tweet this )

“Well-timed silence hath more eloquence than speech.” – Martin Fraquhar Tupper ( Tweet this )

“The problem with speeches isn’t so much not knowing when to stop, as knowing when not to begin.” – Frances Rodman ( Tweet this )

“Words have incredible power. They can make people’s hearts soar, or they can make people’s hearts sore. – Dr. Mardy Grothe ( Tweet this )

“The right word may be effective, but no word was ever as effective as a rightly timed pause.” – Mark Twain ( Tweet this )

“If you can’t communicate and talk to other people and get across your ideas, you’re giving up your potential.” – Warren Buffet ( Tweet this )

“If I went back to college again, I’d concentrate on two areas: learning to write and to speak before an audience. Nothing in life is more important than the ability to communicate effectively.” – Gerald R. Ford ( Tweet this )

“Always give a speech that you would like to hear.” – Andrii Sedniev ( Tweet this )

“If you don’t know what you want to achieve in your presentation your audience never will.” – Harvey Diamond ( Tweet this )

“Find out what’s keeping them up nights and offer hope. Your theme must be an answer to their fears .” – Gerald C Myers ( Tweet this )

“In presentations or speeches less really is more.” – Stephen Keague ( Tweet this )

“Speeches measured by the hour die with the hour”          – Thomas Jefferson ( Tweet this )

“It’s much easier to be convincing if you care about your topic. Figure out what’s important to you about your message and speak from the heart” – Nicholas Boothman ( Tweet this )

“Only the prepared speaker deserves to be confident.” – Dale Carnegie ( Tweet this )

“Speakers who talk about what life has taught them never fail to keep the attention of their listeners.” – Dale Carnegie ( Tweet this )

“It is not failure itself that holds you back; it is the fear of failure that paralyzes you.” -Brian Tracy ( Tweet this )

“All you need is something to say, and a burning desire to say it… it doesn’t matter where your hands are.” – Lou Holtz ( Tweet this )

“If you don’t use stories audience members may enjoy your speech, but there is no chance they’ll remember it.” – Andrii Sedniev ( Tweet this )

“There is no such thing as presentation talent, it is called presentation skills” -David JP Phillips ( Tweet this )

“The audience only pays attention as long as you know where you are going.” - Philip Crosby ( Tweet this )

“Ask yourself, ‘If I had only sixty seconds on the stage, what would I absolutely have to say to get my message across.” - Jeff Dewar ( Tweet this )

“It’s all right to have butterflies in your stomach. Just get them to fly in formation.” – Rob Gilbert ( Tweet this )

“Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak, and to sit down and listen.”   – Winston Churchill ( Tweet this )

“Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn.” – Benjamin Franklin ( Tweet this )

“Designing a presentation without an audience in mind is like writing a love letter and addressing it: To Whom It May Concern.” – Ken Haemer ( Tweet this )

“The goal of effective communication should be for listeners to say ‘Me too!’ versus ‘So what?'” – Jim Rohn ( Tweet this )

“The royal road to a man’s heart is to talk to him about the things he treasures most.” – Dale Carnegie ( Tweet this )

“To communicate, we must realize that we are all different in the way we perceive the world, and use this understanding as a guide to our communication with others.” – Tony Robbins ( Tweet this )

“To sway an audience, you must watch them as you speak.” – C. Kent Wright ( Tweet this )

“If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough.” – Albert Einstein ( Tweet this )

“If you can’t state your position in eight words, you don’t have a position. “ – Seth Godin ( Tweet this )

“The way something is presented will define the way you react to it.” – Neville Brody ( Tweet this )

“Think like a wise man but communicate in the language of the people.” – William Butler Yeats ( Tweet this )

“A presentation is a chance to share, not an oral exam.” – M.F. Fensholt ( Tweet this )      

“Speech is power. Speech is to persuade, to convert, to compel. It is to bring another out of his bad sense into your good sense.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson ( Tweet this )

“Words do two major things: they provide food for the mind and create light for understanding and awareness.” – Jim Rohn ( Tweet this )

“Every speaker has a mouth, an arrangement rather neat. Sometimes it’s filled with wisdom, sometimes it’s filled with feet.” – Robert Orben ( Tweet this )

“Humor is a rubber sword – it allows you to make a point without drawing blood.” – Mary Hirsch ( Tweet this )

“If you want to tell people the truth, make them laugh, otherwise they’ll kill you.” – Oscar Wilde ( Tweet this )

“Once you get people laughing, they’re listening and you can tell them almost anything.” – Herbert Gardner ( Tweet this )

“The world is waiting for your words.” – Arvee Robinson ( Tweet this )

“Effective communication is 20% what you know and 80% how you feel about what you know.” – Jim Rohn ( Tweet this )

“A designer knows he or she has achieved perfection, not when there is nothing left to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.” – Antoine de Saint-Exupery  ( Tweet this )

“If God is in the details, then the Devil is in PowerPoint.” – @AngryPaulRand ( Tweet this )

“The more strikingly visual your presentation is, the more people will remember it. And more importantly, they will remember you.” – Paul Arden ( Tweet this )

“All the great speakers were bad speakers at first.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson ( Tweet this )

“Communication works for those who work at it .” – John Powell ( Tweet this )

“If you wing it when speaking, you’ll get wing it results.” – Arvee Robinson ( Tweet this )

“Your smile is a messenger of your goodwill.” – Dale Carnegie ( Tweet this )

“If it takes a lot of words to say what you have in mind, give it more thought.” – Dennis Roth ( Tweet this )

“Make sure you have stopped speaking before your audience has stopped listening.” – Dorothy Sarnoff ( Tweet this )

“Many attempts to communicate are nullified by saying too much. ” - Robert Greenleaf ( Tweet this )

“If you have an important point to make, don't try to be subtle or clever. Use a pile driver. Hit the point once. Then come back and hit it again. Then hit it a third time - a tremendous whack.” - Winston S. Churchill ( Tweet this )

“The most valuable of all talents is never using two words when one will do.” -Thomas Jefferson ( Tweet this )

“Failure to prepare is preparing to fail.” -John Wooden ( Tweet this )

“Silence is the ultimate weapon of power.” - Charles de Gaulle ( Tweet this )

“Creative thinking is merely intelligent plagiarism.” - Aristotle ( Tweet this )

"Always be yourself and have faith in yourself. Do not go out and look for a successful personality and try to duplicate it." -Bruce Lee ( Tweet this )

“Successful leaders see the opportunities in every difficulty rather than the difficulty in every opportunity.” - Reed Markham ( Tweet this )

“Expect the best. Prepare for the worst. Capitalize on what comes.” - Zig Ziglar ( Tweet this )

“A talk is a voyage with purpose and it must be charted. The man who starts out going nowhere, generally gets there.” - Dale Carnegie  ( Tweet this )

“I have not failed. I’ve simply discovered 10,000 ways that don’t work.” - Thomas Edison ( Tweet this )

“Buried deep within each of us is a spark of greatness, a spark than can be fanned into flames of passion and achievement. That spark is not outside of you it is born deep within you.” -James A. Ray ( Tweet this )

“The energy level of the audience is the same as the speaker’s. For better...or for worse.” -Andras Baneth ( Tweet this )

"One important key to success is self-confidence. An important key to self-confidence is preparation." -Arthur Ashe ( Tweet this )

“Our language is the reflection of ourselves. A language is an exact reflection of the character and growth of its speakers.” - Cesar Chavez ( Tweet this )

“I do not speak of what I cannot praise.” - Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe  ( Tweet this )

“If you're not comfortable with public speaking - and nobody starts out comfortable; you have to learn how to be comfortable - practice. I cannot overstate the importance of practicing. Get some close friends or family members to help evaluate you, or somebody at work that you trust.” -Hillary Clinton ( Tweet this )

“Speak clearly, if you speak at all; carve every word before you let it fall.” -Oliver Wendell Holmes ( Tweet this )

“You gain strength, courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself, 'I have lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along.' You must do the thing you think you cannot do.” - Eleanor Roosevelt ( Tweet this )

As we look ahead into the next century, leaders will be those who empower others.” - Bill Gates ( Tweet this )

"Good transitions can make a speech more important to the audience because they feel they are being taken to a positive conclusion without having to travel a bumpy road." - Joe Griffith ( Tweet this )

"When speaking in public, your message - no matter how important - will not be effective or memorable if you don't have a clear structure." - Patricia Fripp ( Tweet this )

“The way you overcome shyness is to become so wrapped up in something that you forget to be afraid.” -Lady Bird Johnson ( Tweet this )

“The best way to conquer stage fright is to know what you are talking about.” -Michael H. Mescon ( Tweet this )

“Storytelling is the most powerful way to put ideas into the world today.” - Robert McKee ( Tweet this )

“If something comes from your heart, it will reach the heart of your audience.” — فوزیه کوفی (Fawzia Koofi)‎ ( Tweet this )

The inspiring story of Dale Carnegie's road to success

How do we achieve our dreams and goals as a speaker? The inspiring story of Dale Carnegie's road to success

breaking through a creative block

60 ideas and quotes on breaking through a creative block

Would you like to see these quotes visualised? Download our free eBook here . 

Find out more about being listed on SpeakerHub . It is 100% free. 

  • Dale Carnegie quotes to help you become a better speaker

smartmovesonly

Navigating the Path to Knowledge Together

120 Inspiring Quotes to Start A Speech with Impact

April 20, 2023 by smartmovesonly

  • 1 Inspiring Quotes to Start A Speech with Impact
  • 2 Good Quotes To Start A Speech About Yourself 
  • 3 Good Quotes To Start A Speech
  • 4 Funny Quotes To Start A Speech
  • 5 Great Quotes To Start A Speech
  • 6 Motivational Quotes To Start A Speech
  • 7 Quotes To Start A Speech on Relationship
  • 8 Quotes To Start A Speech on fashion designing
  • 9 Quotes To Start A Speech in School
  • 10 Conclusion

Inspiring Quotes to Start A Speech with Impact

It is often said that a picture is worth a thousand words, but sometimes, a single sentence can leave a lasting impact on our minds and hearts. Quotes are powerful tools that can inspire, motivate, and move us to action. Whether you are giving a speech, writing an essay, or simply looking for a source of inspiration, quotes can provide the perfect starting point to help you express your ideas and connect with your audience.

Today, I have compiled 120 quotes that cover a wide range of topics, from motivation and success to love and friendship. These quotes have been carefully curated to provide you with a diverse collection of voices and perspectives that will help you find the perfect words to start your speech. Whether you are looking for a witty one-liner, a profound insight, or a timeless piece of wisdom, you are sure to find something that resonates with you in this collection.

But why are quotes so powerful? At their core, quotes are distilled expressions of the human experience. They capture our thoughts and emotions in a way that is both concise and profound. They can make us laugh, cry, or feel a surge of motivation, all in a few short words. Quotes have the power to connect us with each other and with ourselves, reminding us of our shared humanity and the things that truly matter in life.

So, without further ado, let us dive into this collection of 120 quotes to start a speech. May these words inspire you, challenge you, and move you to action as you seek to make your mark on the world.

Related:  30 Powerful Ways to Start a Speech or Presentation

Good Quotes To Start A Speech About Yourself 

How to start a speech

  • “I am the author of my own story, and every page is a testament to my resilience and determination.”
  • “As I stand here before you today, I am reminded of the quote, ‘Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you react to it.’ And it is with that mindset that I have faced every challenge that has come my way.”
  • “I am not defined by my past, but rather by the person I am today and the person I strive to become tomorrow.”
  • “I believe that every person has a unique story to tell, and it is through our experiences that we gain wisdom and empathy for others.”
  • “I am a firm believer in the power of self-reflection and personal growth, and it is through these practices that I have become the person I am today.”
  • “I have always been driven by a desire to make a positive impact on the world, and it is this passion that has guided me throughout my life.”
  • “I am a lifelong learner, constantly seeking new knowledge and experiences that broaden my understanding of the world and my place in it.”
  • “I believe that success is not just about achieving our goals, but also about the journey we take to get there.”
  • “I have learned that failure is not a setback, but rather an opportunity to learn and grow.”
  • “I am a believer in the power of community, and it is through the support and encouragement of those around me that I have been able to achieve my goals.”
  • “I believe that each of us has a unique purpose in life, and it is our responsibility to discover and pursue that purpose with passion and dedication.”
  • “I am a firm believer in the importance of perseverance, and it is through my own determination and persistence that I have been able to overcome obstacles and achieve my dreams.”
  • “I believe that our greatest strengths often emerge from our greatest challenges, and it is through these challenges that we discover what we are truly capable of.”
  • “I am committed to living a life of integrity, compassion, and kindness, and it is these values that guide my actions and decisions every day.”
  • “I believe that we all have the power to make a positive impact on the world, and it is through our actions and our words that we can inspire others to do the same.”
Related:  How to Start a Speech: The Power of Storytelling

Good Quotes To Start A Speech

  • “The biggest adventure you can ever take is to live the life of your dreams.”
  • “The only way to do great work is to love what you do.”
  • “Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.”
  • “Believe you can and you’re halfway there.”
  • “Our lives are defined by opportunities, even the ones we miss.”
  • “The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.”
  • “The best way to predict your future is to create it.”
  • “The only limit to our realization of tomorrow will be our doubts of today.”
  • “Life is a journey, and if you fall in love with the journey, you will be in love forever.”
  • “It is not in the stars to hold our destiny but in ourselves.”
  • “You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.”
  • “The greatest glory in living lies not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall.”
  • “Be the change you wish to see in the world.”
  • “The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched – they must be felt with the heart.”
  • “To succeed in life, you need two things: ignorance and confidence.”
Related:  5 Steps To Crafting the Perfect Opening Line for Your Speech

Funny Quotes To Start A Speech

  • “I am here to talk to you about myself because no one else will.”
  • “I’m not great at the advice. Can I interest you in a sarcastic comment?”
  • “I always wanted to be somebody, but now I realize I should have been more specific.”
  • “I’m not sure if I’m the best person for this job, but they gave it to me anyways.”
  • “I’m not arguing, I’m just explaining why I’m right.”
  • “I’m not lazy, I’m just conserving my energy.”
  • “I’m not short, I’m just concentrated awesome.”
  • “I’m not a morning person, I’m a coffee person.”
  • “I used to think I was indecisive, but now I’m not sure.”
  • “I’m not procrastinating, I’m just prioritizing my to-do list.”
  • “I’m not saying I’m Batman, but have you ever seen me and Batman in the same room?”
  • “I don’t always have a good idea, but when I do, I forget it.”
  • “I’m not saying I’m old, but I remember when emojis were called emoticons.”
  • “I’m not saying I’m forgetful, but I went to the fridge to get some water and ended up watching Netflix for an hour.”
  • “I’m not saying I’m a genius, but I did just figure out how to eat pizza while lying down.”
Related:  30 Powerful Ways to End a Speech or Presentation

Great Quotes To Start A Speech

  • “The greatest glory in living lies not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall.” – Nelson Mandela
  • “Believe you can and you’re halfway there.” – Theodore Roosevelt
  • “If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader.” – John Quincy Adams
  • “The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.” – Eleanor Roosevelt
  • “It does not matter how slowly you go as long as you do not stop.” – Confucius
  • “Strive not to be a success, but rather to be of value.” – Albert Einstein
  • “The best way to predict the future is to create it.” – Peter Drucker
  • “Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.” – Winston Churchill
  • “The only way to do great work is to love what you do.” – Steve Jobs
  • “It’s not what happens to you, but how you react to it that matters.” – Epictetus
  • “Be the change you wish to see in the world.” – Mahatma Gandhi
  • “The only limit to our realization of tomorrow will be our doubts of today.” – Franklin D. Roosevelt
  • “Champions keep playing until they get it right.” – Billie Jean King
  • “The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched – they must be felt with the heart.” – Helen Keller
  • “You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.” – Wayne Gretzky 
Related:  How To Not Be Nervous For A Presentation-13 Proven Techniques

Motivational Quotes To Start A Speech

  • “Believe in yourself and all that you are. Know that there is something inside you that is greater than any obstacle.” – Christian D. Larson
  • “Your time is limited, don’t waste it living someone else’s life.” – Steve Jobs
  • “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” – Thomas Edison
  • “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.” – Franklin D. Roosevelt
  • “If you want to achieve greatness, stop asking for permission.” – Unknown
  • “The best way to predict your future is to create it.” – Abraham Lincoln
  • “Success is not the key to happiness. Happiness is the key to success. If you love what you are doing, you will be successful.” – Albert Schweitzer
  • “Success is not a destination, but the road that you’re on. Being successful means that you’re working hard and walking your walk every day. You can only live your dream by working hard towards it.” – Marlon Wayans
  • “Don’t watch the clock; do what it does. Keep going.” – Sam Levenson 
Related:  The Do’s and Don’ts of Starting a Speech: Common Mistakes to Avoid

Quotes To Start A Speech on Relationship

  • “A healthy relationship is built on unwavering trust, honesty, and communication.” – Unknown
  • “The quality of your life is the quality of your relationships.” – Tony Robbins
  • “Relationships are not about finding someone to complete you but rather someone who accepts you completely.” – Unknown
  • “In a strong relationship, the love between two people should be greater than the need for each other.” – Unknown
  • “A successful relationship requires falling in love many times, always with the same person.” – Mignon McLaughlin
  • “Relationships are about trust. If you have to play detective, then it’s time to move on.” – Unknown
  • “It’s not about finding someone who completes you. It’s about finding someone who accepts you completely.” – Unknown
  • “A true relationship is two imperfect people refusing to give up on each other.” – Unknown
  • “A great relationship is about two things: first, appreciating the similarities, and second, respecting the differences.” – Unknown
  • “Relationships are like gardens. They require nurturing, patience, and love to grow.” – Unknown
  • “The greatest happiness in life is the certainty that we are loved.” – Victor Hugo
  • “Love isn’t something you find. Love is something that finds you.” – Loretta Young
  • “The best thing to hold onto in life is each other.” – Audrey Hepburn
  • “A true relationship is when you can tell each other anything and everything. No secrets and no lies.” – Unknown
  • “A good relationship is when two people accept each other’s past, support each other’s present, and love each other enough to encourage each other’s future.” – Unknown
  • “Happiness is not the absence of problems, it’s the ability to deal with them together.” – Unknown
  • “The best relationships are built on a foundation of friendship.” – Unknown
  • “In a strong relationship, two people love each other for who they are, not who they want each other to be.” – Unknown
  • “A relationship is not based on the length of time you’ve spent together, but on the foundation, you’ve built together.” – Unknown
  • “The best things in life are the people we love, the places we’ve been, and the memories we’ve made along the way.” – Unknown 
Top Reads: 135 Monday Motivation Quotes to Jumpstart Your Week

Quotes To Start A Speech on fashion designing

  • “Fashion is the armor to survive the reality of everyday life.” – Bill Cunningham
  • “Fashion is the most powerful art there is. It’s movement, design, and architecture all in one. It shows the world who we are and who we’d like to be.” – Blair Waldorf
  • “Fashion is not necessarily about labels. It’s not about brands. It’s about something else that comes from within you.” – Ralph Lauren
  • “Fashion is the language of the soul.” – Miuccia Prada
  • “Fashion is the mirror of history.” – Christian Dior
  • “Fashion is not just beauty, it’s about good attitude. You have to believe in yourself and be strong.” – Adriana Lima
  • “The joy of dressing is an art.” – John Galliano
  • “Style is a way to say who you are without having to speak.” – Rachel Zoe
  • “Fashion is not something that exists in dresses only. Fashion is in the sky, in the street, fashion has to do with ideas, the way we live, what is happening.” – Coco Chanel
  • “Fashion is about dreaming and making other people dream.” – Donatella Versace
  • “I think fashion is a lot of fun. I love clothes. More than fashion or brand labels, I love design.” – Marc Jacobs
  • “Fashion is a form of self-expression. It’s how you show the world who you are without saying a word.” – Unknown
  • “The best fashion show is definitely on the street. Always has been, and always will be.” – Bill Cunningham
  • “Fashion is an art, and you are the canvas.” – Velvet Paper
  • “Fashion is a trend. Style lives within a person.” – Oscar de la Renta 
Top Reads: 105 Tuesday Motivation And Quotes To Keep The Vibe Going

Quotes To Start A Speech in School

  • “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.” – Nelson Mandela
  • “The beautiful thing about learning is that no one can take it away from you.” – B.B. King
  • “The function of education is to teach one to think intensively and to think critically. Intelligence plus character – that is the goal of true education.” – Martin Luther King Jr.
  • “Education is not preparation for life; education is life itself.” – John Dewey
  • “The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.” – Dr. Seuss
  • “The roots of education are bitter, but the fruit is sweet.” – Aristotle
  • “Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire.” – W.B. Yeats
  • “Education is not a problem. Education is an opportunity.” – Lyndon B. Johnson
  • “The only person who is educated is the one who has learned how to learn and change.” – Carl Rogers
  • “Education is the passport to the future, for tomorrow belongs to those who prepare for it today.” – Malcolm X
  • “The purpose of education is to make minds, not careers.” – William Deresiewicz
  • “Education is not a tool for development – individual, community and the nation. It is the foundation for our future. It is empowerment to make choices and emboldens the youth to chase their dreams.” – Nita Ambani
  • “Education is not about filling a pail, it’s about lighting a fire.” – William Butler Yeats
  • “Intelligence plus character – that is the true goal of education.” – Martin Luther King Jr.
  • “Education is the key to unlock the golden door of freedom.” – George Washington Carver

We have explored the power of quotes and how they can be used to start a speech. From motivational quotes to humorous quips, the right quote can set the tone for your speech and capture the attention of your audience. We have seen that quotes can distill complex ideas into a few simple words, making them a powerful tool for communication.

But quotes are more than just words on a page. They are a reflection of the human experience, capturing our hopes, dreams, fears, and aspirations. They remind us of the things that truly matter in life and connect us with each other in a way that transcends time and space. Whether you are looking for a source of inspiration, a way to connect with your audience, or simply a reminder of the beauty and complexity of the human experience, quotes can provide the perfect starting point.

So, as you prepare to give your next speech, consider the power of a well-chosen quote. Let these words inspire you, challenge you and move you to action as you seek to make your mark on the world. Remember that words have the power to change lives, and that the right quote can be the spark that sets your audience on fire.

Leave a Reply Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment.

Smartmovesonly

  • Privacy policy

Logo for Open Textbooks

Want to create or adapt books like this? Learn more about how Pressbooks supports open publishing practices.

8 Opening a Speech: Get Their Attention from the Start!

Man holding a prop while talking to an audience

Get the audience’s attention, or the rest of your speech is a waste. I mean it!  Most people spend the majority of their speech preparation time working on the body of their speech and then they tack on an opening and a closing last minute.

The opening and closing deserve the most attention. Why?  If you don’t get the audience’s attention and get them to pay attention to you instead of…  the thoughts in their heads, their grocery lists, their neighbors, their social media…then all the rest of your brilliant content is wasted because they will never hear it. Lisa Marshall of Toastmasters International stresses the opening words are so important that “I spend 10 times more time developing and practicing the opener than any other part of the speech.”

Look at the description of Person A and Person B and tell me which person you like more.

Person A envious, stubborn, critical, impulsive, industrious, and intelligent

Person B intelligent, industrious, impulsive, critical, stubborn, and envious

If you are like most people, you have a preference for Person B.  This illustrates a study by Solomon Ashe. He had subjects rate these two people using a string of descriptive words. Now look back at the descriptions. Look closely and you will notice they are the same words in a different order. Most people put the most emphasis on the first three words in determining how they will create the person. Like Asche’s subjects, your audience will be evaluating those first three words. Let’s bring it back around to speechmaking. The first sentence out of your mouth is crucial and the first three words are especially important.

I am sure you are not surprised to know that people form opinions quickly. To prove this, researchers showed subjects either a 20-minute clip of a job applicant or a 20-30 second clip of a job applicant. They were asked to rate the person on likeability and self-assurance. People were able to form an opinion in under thirty seconds. Not only that but they were able to form the same opinions from a 30-second clip as a 20-minute exposure.

The Battle for Attention

Remember that every piece of content in our modern era is part of an attention war. It’s fighting against thousands of other claims on people’s time and energy. This is true even when you’re standing on a stage in front of a seated audience. They have deadly distracters in their pockets called smartphones, which they can use to summon to their eyes a thousand outside alternatives. Once emails and texts make their claim, your talk may be doomed. And then there’s that lurking demon of modern life, fatigue. All these are lethal enemies. You never want to provide someone with an excuse to zone out. You have to be a savvy general directing this war’s outcome. Starting strong is one of your most important weapons. Chris Anderson, TED Talks, The Official TED Guide to Public Speaking.

“People don’t pay attention to boring things,” according to John Medina, author of Brain Rules, “You’ve got 30 seconds before they start asking the question, ‘Am I going to pay attention to you or not?'” It is important to get your audience’s attention right away. In this chapter, I will share with you several ways to win the war for attention and to start your speech right. I will show you the basic opening and closing structure of speeches and give you many examples of what that looks like.  A speech, like an airplane, needs a good take-off and a good landing. Now it’s time to prepare to have a strong take-off and learn everything that goes into a speech introduction. This chapter is full of examples from a variety of talks. I included quotes from those introductions, but I also included links to each of those talks hoping you will be interested enough to want to listen.

Ways to Start a Speech

Chris Anderson likens this to battle. “First there is the 10-second war: can you do something in your first moments on stage to ensure people’s eager attention while you set up your talk topic? Second is the 1-minute war: can you then use that first minute to ensure that they’re committed to coming on the full talk journey with you?”

When thinking about your speech, spend a lot of time thinking about how to win the battle for their attention. Your introduction should make your audience want to put down their phones and listen. Your introduction should be so compelling they stop their wandering minds and turn their thoughts to you and you alone. Your introduction should start with three strong words where they form a strong opinion of you and your speech.  Let me share how to accomplish this. 

Capturing the audience through the story is one of the most powerful ways to start a speech. A story engages the brain in powerful ways and causes the audience’s brains to sync with the speakers. A well-told story will allow the audience to “see” things in their mind’s eye and to join the speaker’s emotions.

Watch this clip by Ric Elias for how he begins his speech with a powerful story. Particularly notice his first four words, “Imagine a big explosion.” 

Imagine a big explosion as you climb through 3,000 ft.   Imagine a plane full of smoke.   Imagine an engine going clack, clack, clack.   It sounds scary.   Well, I had a unique seat that day. I was sitting in 1D. I was the only one who could talk to the flight attendants. So I looked at them right away, and they said, “No problem. We probably hit some birds.” The pilot had already turned the plane around, and we weren’t that far. You could see Manhattan. Two minutes later, three things happened at the same time.

Ric Elias, Three Things I Learned While My Plane Crashed. 

Consider these other examples and notice how the speaker uses a story.

More powerful introductions using story:

I love you, I believe in you and it’s going to be OK. The three things that I needed to hear three years ago when I felt more abandoned than ever. I remember that day as if it happen this morning. It was Sunday and I had just woken up early at a brisk 12:30 in the afternoon. Ryan Brooks, Honesty, courage, and the importance of brushing your teeth.  When I was nine years old I went off to summer camp for the first time. And my mother packed me a suitcase full of books, which to me seemed like a perfectly natural thing to do. Because in my family, reading was the primary group activity. And this might sound antisocial to you, but for us, it was really just a different way of being social. You have the animal warmth of your family sitting right next to you, but you are also free to go roaming around the adventureland inside your own mind. And I had this idea that camp was going to be just like this, but better. Susan Cain. The Power of Introverts. I grew up to study the brain because I have a brother who has been diagnosed with a brain disorder: schizophrenia. Jill Bolte Taylor, My Stroke of Insight. A few years ago, I got one of those spam emails. I’m not quite sure how, but it turned up in my inbox, and it was from a guy called Solomon Odonkoh.  James Veitch This is What Happens When You Reply to Spam Email. Eleven years ago, while giving birth to my first child, I hemorrhaged and was transfused with seven pints of blood. Four years later, I found out that I had been infected with the AIDS virus and had unknowingly passed it to my daughter, Ariel, through my breast milk, and my son, Jake, in utero. Elizabeth Glaser,  Address to the 1992 Democratic National Convention.

Good stories immediately set the stage and introduce you to the place and to the people. Doing this helps your brain can form a structure where the story takes place. It helps you see the story unfold in your mind.  If you need help starting a story, Vanessa Van Edwards suggests these prompts:

  • Once upon a time.
  • I’m here for a reason, and it’s an interesting story.
  • The best thing that ever happened to me was.

There is an entire chapter on the Power of Story that can be found here.

Humor is a rubber sword – it allows you to make a point without drawing blood. – Mary Hirsch

  When Family Guy’s Seth MacFarlane spoke at Harvard Commencemen t in the rain, he started with “There’s nowhere I would rather be on a day like this than around all this electrical equipment.” People laughed, people smiled, and the speech was off to a strong start. Humor works because it gives the audience a hit of the feel-good hormone dopamine. That is … if you are funny. If you decide to use humor, make sure you are funny. Test your humor on honest friends. In addition, the humor you use should fit your personality and your audience. Be warned, some groups would find humor inappropriate, do your research.

Watch this clip for how Tshering Tobgay begins his speech with humor. 

In case you are wondering, no, I’m not wearing a dress, and no, I’m not saying what I’m wearing underneath. (Laughter) This is a go. This is my national dress. This is how all men dress in Bhutan. That is how our women dress. Like our women, we men get to wear pretty bright colors, but unlike our women, we get to show off our legs. Our national dress is unique, but this is not the only thing that’s unique about my country. Our promise to remain carbon neutral is also unique, and this is what I’d like to speak about today, our promise to remain carbon neutral.

Tshering Tobgay, This Country Isn’t Just Carbon Neutral–Its Carbon Negative. 

More powerful introductions using humor

I didn’t rebel as a teenager.   I started late and was still going at it the summer I turned thirty. I just became an American citizen, I divorced my husband, I got a big tattoo of a bat on my arm, and I joined a New York City punk band. Danusia Trevino, Guilty I need to make a confession at the outset here. A little over 20 years ago, I did something that I regret, something that I’m not particularly proud of.   Something that, in many ways, I wish no one would ever know, but that here I feel kind of obliged to reveal. In the late 1980s, in a moment of youthful indiscretion, I went to law school. Dan Pink, The Puzzle of Motivation.  It is really interesting to be a woman and to get to 45 and to not be married yet and to not have kids, especially when you have pushed out your fifth kid on television. Tracee Ellis Ross, 2017 Glamour Woman of the Year. I am not drunk …but the doctor who delivered me was.” (reference the shake she has due to a botched medical procedure at birth causing her cerebral palsey). Maysoon Zayid, I’ve Got 99 Prolbems and Cerebral Palsey is Not One of Them .

Salutation followed by humor

Oh boy, thank you so much, thank you so much.   Thank you, President Cowan, Mrs. President Cowen; distinguished guests, undistinguished guests, you know who you are, honored faculty and creepy Spanish teacher.   And thank you to all the graduating Class of 2009, I realize most of you are hungover and have splitting headaches and haven’t slept since Fat Tuesday, but you can’t graduate ’til I finish, so listen up. When I was asked to make the commencement speech, I immediately said yes.   Then I went to look up what commencement meant which would have been easy if I had a dictionary, but most of the books in our house are Portia’s, and they’re all written in Australian.   So I had to break the word down myself, to find out the meaning. Commencement: common, and cement, common cement.   You commonly see cement on sidewalks.   Sidewalks have cracks, and if you step on a crack, you break your mother’s back.   So there’s that.   But I’m honored that you’ve asked me here to speak at your common cement Ellen DeGenres, Commencement Speech at Tulane. Well, thank you. Thank you Mr. President, First Lady, King Abdullah of Jordan, Norm, distinguished guests. Please join me in praying that I don’t say something we’ll all regret. That was for the FCC. If you’re wondering what I’m doing here, at a prayer breakfast, well so am I. I’m certainly not here as a man of the cloth, unless that cloth is — is leather. Bono at  the  54th annual National Prayer Breakfast.  

Starting your speech by sharing a little-known fact, can be powerful. For this to fully work, you need to have the audience’s attention from the very first word. Read on for how these speakers started strong.

Powerful introductions using facts

Sadly, in the next 18 minutes when I do our chat, four Americans that are alive will be dead from the food that they eat. Jamie Oliver, Teach Every Child About Food. So I want to start by offering you a free, no-tech life hack, and all it requires of you is this: that you change your posture for two minutes. Amy Cuddy, Your Body Language May Shape Who You Are. Okay, now I don’t want to alarm anybody in this room, but it’s just come to my attention that the person to your right is a liar. (Laughter) Also, the person to your left is a liar. Also the person sitting in your very seats is a liar. We’re all liars. What I’m going to do today is I’m going to show you what the research says about why we’re all liars, how you can become a lie spotter and why you might want to go the extra mile and go from lie spotting to truth seeking, and ultimately to trust building. Pamela Meyer, How to Spot a Liar. You will live 7.5 minutes longer than you would have otherwise, just because you watched this talk.  Jane McGonigal. The Game That Can Give You Ten Extra Years of Life. There are 900,000 divorces   in the United States of America every year.   Fewer than 10% of them   ever talked to anybody about their relationship.   So why would you need a science?   Well, we need a science to develop effective treatment   and understanding of how to make love work.   Why?   Why should we care about having great relationships?   Well, it turns out that in the past 50 years,   a field called social epidemiology has emerged,   and it shows that great friendships,   great love relationships between lovers and parents and children   lead to greater health – mental health as well as physical health –   greater wealth, greater resilience,   faster recovery from illness,   greater longevity –   if you want to live 10 to 15 years longer, work on your relationships,   not just your exercise –   and more successful children as well.   John Gottman. The Science of Love.  This room may appear to be holding 600 people but there is actually so many more because within each of us there is a multiple of personalities. Elizabeth Lesser,  Take the Other to Lunch.

Using a physical object can draw the audience’s attention. Make sure you plan the timing of the prop, and you practice with it. It is important that it is large enough for the audience to see and they can see it well enough that they are not frustrated. Depending on your speech, it may be appropriate to put it away, so it is not distracting.

Powerful introductions using props

Darren Tay walks onto the stage and stares at the audience. He pulls a pair of underwear out of his pocket and puts them on over his suit. “Hey loser how do you like your new school uniform. I think it looks great on you. Those were the words of my high school bully Greg Upperfield. Now if you are all wondering if the underwear that Greg used was clean, I had the same questions. Darren Tay, Outsmart, Outlast. Toastmasters 2016 World Champion of Public Speaking . Mohammed Qahtani walks onstage, puts a cigarette in his mouth … then looks up as if noticing the audience and says, “What?” As the audience laughs, he continues. “Oh, you all think smoking kills? Ha-ha, let me tell you something. Do you know that the amount of people dying from diabetes are three times as many [as the] people dying from smoking? Yet if I pulled out a Snickers bar, nobody would say anything.” He goes on to say, his facts are made up and his real topic is about how words have power. Mohammed Qahtani, Toastmasters 2015 World Champion of Public Speaking
JA Gamach blows a train whistle and then starts his speech as if he were a conductor, “All aboard! It’s a bright sunny day and you are taking a train. You are wearing a pair of sandals you proudly made yourself. As you board the train one of your sandals slips off and falls beside the track.  (J.A. loses one sandal that falls down the platform.)  You try to retrieve it. Too late. The train starts to pull away. What would you have done? I would have cursed my bad luck, mad at losing a sandal. JA Gamache, Toastmasters 2007 World Championship. 

Use a Quotation

Powerful introductions using quotes.

Rules for using quotes

  • Be sure to use the quote purposefully and not just as placeholders.
  • Quotes can just take up valuable space where you could put content unless they are not properly used.
  • Let the quote be more important than the author. When using a quote at the opening, say the quote first and then the author. When using a quote at the end of a speech, say the author first and then the quote.
  • Keep it short and sweet. Use a quote that gets to the point quickly.
  • If you must use long quotes–put them on your slide.
  • If you project a quote, read it to the audience. Never expect them to read it while you talk about something else. Never say stupid things like, “You can read, I’ll let you read this for yourselves” or “Your adults, I’ll let you process this.”
  • Check the authorship and authenticity of the quote. There are so many quotes on the internet that are misattributed and misquoted. For example, who wrote the quote: “They may forget what you said, but they will never forget how you made them feel”?
  • Do not go for the overused quote or your audience is prone to dismiss it.  Instead of quoting an overused “I have a dream quote” do as Jim Key, the 2003 Toastmasters International World Championship of Public Speaking did and pick an equally great but lesser-used Martin Luther King Quote: “The time is always right to do what is right!”

Watch Nate Stauffer at a Moth Grand Slam as he uses poetry to start and carry his story.

Watch this clip for how Andrew Solomon opens with a quote to make us think about depression. 

Andrew Solomon, Depression, The Secret We Share. 

Reference the Occasion

Ceremonial speeches often call for acknowledgment of those in attendance or a mention of the occasion. Here is how Martin Luther King Junior set up his famous speech. I am happy to join with you today in what will go down in history as the greatest demonstration for freedom in the history of our nation. Five score years ago, a great American, in whose symbolic shadow we stand today, signed the Emancipation Proclamation. Martin Luther King Junior, I Have a Dream.

Get the Audience Involved

Having the audience stand, raise their hand, or even nod in encouragement can cause them to focus on your message. This can be particularly helpful if the audience has been sitting for a while. Let me show you a few examples of how that works.

Ask a Question

You can involve the audience from the start by asking them a question.

Watch the first few minutes of Amy Purdy’s speech and how she starts with a question, “ If your life were a book   and you were the author,   how would you want your story to go?” 

More powerful introductions using a question

I’m here today to talk about a disturbing question, which has an equally disturbing answer. My topic is the secret of domestic violence and the question I’m going to tackle is the one everyone always asks. Why would she stay? Why would anyone stay with a man who beats her? Why Domestic Violence Victims Don’t Leave- Leslie Morgan Steiner Here’s a question we need to rethink together: What should be the role of money and markets in our societies? Today, there are very few things that money can’t buy. If you’re sentenced to a jail term in Santa Barbara, California, you should know that if you don’t like the standard accommodations, you can buy a prison cell upgrade. It’s true. For how much, do you think? What would you guess? Five hundred dollars? It’s not the Ritz-Carlton. It’s a jail! Eighty-two dollars a night. Eighty-two dollars a night. Michael Sandel, Why We Shouldn’t Trust Markets with Our Civic Life.
How do you explain when things don’t go as we assume? Or better, how do you explain when others are able to achieve things that seem to defy all of the assumptions? For example: Why is Apple so innovative? Year after year, after year, after year, they’re more innovative than all their competition. Simon Sinek, How Great Leaders Inspire Action.  Can you remember a moment when a brilliant idea flashed into your head? Darren LaCroix,  Ouch! World Champion of Public Speaking.

Have the Audience Participate

If you ask a question you want the audience to answer, be sure to give them time to respond. If they raise their hands, be sure to acknowledge their response. You might have the answer by standing, by raising their hands, by speaking to their neighbor. You might call on one member of the audience to answer for the group.

If you ask a question you want the audience to answer, don’t let your presentation slide give away the answer. For example, one speaker had a slide behind him that said, “Lesson 1: Don’t Worry About IQ.” He has the audience raise their hand if they want to improve their grades then he asks, “So can I get a show of hands, how many would say IQ is going to be the most important to get those marks to go up?” Very few people responded because the answer was “written on the wall” literally.

Watch this clip as Allan Pease engages the audience.

Everybody hold your right hand in front like this in a handshaking position. Uncross your legs. Relaxed position. Right hand in front. When I say the word, “Now” here’s what we’re going to do. I am going to ask you to turn to someone besides you, shake hands as if you’re meeting for the first time, and keep pumping till I ask you to stop. Then you’ll stop and freeze it and we’re going to analyze what’s happening. You got that? You don’t have time to think about this. Do it now. Pick anybody and pump. Pump, everybody. Freeze it. Hold it. Stop. Hold it. Freeze it. Keep your hands locked. Keep them locked. The person whose hand is most on top is saying “I’ll be the boss for the rest of the day.” Allan Pease, Body Language, the Power is in the Palm of Your Hands. 

More powerful introductions using audience participation

I have a confession to make. But first, I want you to make a little confession to me. In the past year, I want you to just raise your hand if you’ve experienced relatively little stress? Kelly McGonigal, How to Make Stress Your Friend. So I’d like to start, if I may, by asking you some questions. If you’ve ever lost someone you truly loved, ever had your heartbroken, ever struggled through an acrimonious divorce, or being the victim of infidelity, please stand up. If standing up isn’t accessible to you, you can put your hand up. Please stay standing and keep your hand up there. If you’ve ever lived through a natural disaster, being bullied or made redundant, stand on up. If you’ve ever had a miscarriage, if you’ve ever had an abortion or struggled through infertility, please stand up. Finally, if you or anyone you love has had to cope with mental illness, dementia, some form of physical impairment or cope with suicide, please stand up. Look around you. Adversity doesn’t discriminate. If you are alive, you are going to have to, or you’ve already had to, deal with some tough times Thank you, everyone. Take a seat. Lucy Hone: The Three Secrets of Resilient People.  Advice from Moth Storytelling Club Have a great first line that sets up the stakes and grabs attention No: “So I was thinking about climbing this mountain. But then I watched a little TV and made a snack and took a nap and my mom called and vented about her psoriasis then I did a little laundry (a whites load) (I lost another sock, darn it!) and then I thought about it again and decided I’d climb the mountain the next morning.” Yes: “The mountain loomed before me. I had my hunting knife, some trail mix and snow boots. I had to make it to the little cabin and start a fire before sundown or freeze to death for sure.”  

Arouse Suspense or Curiosity

Watch this clip for how Kathryn Schulz creates curiosity by showing us Johnny Depp’s tattoo and then talks about her tattoo of regret. We hang on to her every word wondering, “Where is all this going and how bad can her tattoo really be?”

So that’s Johnny Depp, of course.   And that’s Johnny Depp’s shoulder.   And that’s Johnny Depp’s famous shoulder tattoo.   Some of you might know that, in 1990,   Depp got engaged to Winona Ryder,   and he had tattooed on his right shoulder   “Winona forever.”   And then three years later —   which in fairness, kind of is forever by Hollywood standards —   they broke up,   and Johnny went and got a little bit of repair work done.   And now his shoulder says, “Wino forever.”

Kathryn Schulz, Don’t Regret, Regret. 

  Saying unexpected things or challenging assumptions can get a speech started off right. A herd of wildebeests, a shoal of fish, a flock of birds. Many animals gather in large groups that are among the most wonderful spectacles in the natural world. But why do these groups form? The common answers include things like seeking safety in numbers or hunting in packs or gathering to mate or breed, and all of these explanations, while often true, make a huge assumption about animal behavior, that the animals are in control of their own actions, that they are in charge of their bodies. And that is often not the case. Ed Yong. Zombie Roaches and Other Parasite Tales. TED Talk

 Keys to Success

Memorize your first sentence so you can deliver it with impact. Memorize your whole speech opening if possible. Make sure your first three words have an impact.

Typical Patterns for Speech Openings

  • Get the audience’s attention–called a hook or a grabber.
  • Establish rapport and tell the audience why you care about the topic of why you are credible to speak on the topic.
  • Introduce the speech thesis/preview/good idea.
  • Tell the audience why they should care about this topic.
  • Give a transition statement to the body of the speech.

Step Two: Credibility

First, you hook the audience with your powerful grabber, then you tell them why you are credible to speak on the topic and why the topic is important. If they know your credentials, you would not need to tell them your credibility but you may still want to tell them why you are interested in the topic. Here are a few examples of how some speakers included credibility.

Tell Why You Are Credible

I’m a doctor, but I kind of slipped sideways into research, and now I’m an epidemiologist. Ben Goldacre, Battling Bad Science.  I started studying resilience research a decade ago at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. It was an amazing time to be there because the professors who trained me had just picked up the contract to train all 1.1 million American soldiers to be as mentally fit as they always have been physically fit. Lucy Hone: The Three Secrets of Resilient People.  What I’m going to do is to just give a few notes,   and this is from a book I’m preparing called   “Letters to a Young Scientist.”   I’d thought it’d be appropriate to   present it, on the basis that I have had extensive experience   in teaching, counseling scientists across a broad array of fields.   And you might like to hear some of the principles that I’ve developed in doing   that teaching and counseling. EO Wilson: Advice to a Young Scientist. 

Step Three: Tell Why it is Important

Early on in your speech, you should tell the audience why they should care. You should connect the speech to things they care about. This is where you answer, so what, who cares?

You know, I didn’t set out to be a parenting expert. In fact, I’m not very interested in parenting, per se. It’s just that there’s a certain style of parenting these days that is kind of messing up kids, impeding their chances to develop.  Julie Lythcott-Haims, How to Raise Successful Kids – Without Over-Parenting

Step Four: Tell the Purpose of the Talk (aka Preview/ Thesis)

“If you don’t know what you want to achieve in your presentation your audience never will.” – Harvey Diamond, author

Tell the audience your purpose, clearly give them an overview of the main points.  MIT professor, Patrick Winston says one of the best things to add to your speech is an empowerment promise. You want to tell people what they will know at the end of your speech that they didn’t know at the beginning. It’s their reason for being here.  His empowerment promise was, “Today you will see some examples of what you can put in your armory of speaking techniques and it will be the case that one of those examples–some heuristic, some technique, maybe only one will be the one that will get you the job. By the end of the next 60 minutes, you will have been exposed to a lot of ideas, some of which you will incorporate into your own repertoire, and they will ensure that you get the maximum opportunity to have your ideas valued and accepted by the people you speak with.” Notice that this statement told you what to expect and why it mattered.

Here are examples of how various speakers accomplished this.

For years, I’ve been telling people, stress makes you sick. It increases the risk of everything from the common cold to cardiovascular disease. Basically, I’ve turned stress into the enemy. But I have changed my mind about stress, and today, I want to change yours. Kelly McGonigal, How to Make Stress Your Friend.   We’ve been sold the lie that disability is a Bad Thing, capital B, capital T. It’s a bad thing, and to live with a disability makes you exceptional. It’s not a bad thing, and it doesn’t make you exceptional. Stella Young, I’m Not Your Inspiration, Thank You Very Much
What I’m going to show you is all of the main things, all of the main features of my discipline, evidence-based medicine. And I will talk you through all of these and demonstrate how they work, exclusively using examples of people getting stuff wrong. Ben Goldacre, Battling Bad Science.  I would like to think that we (Arab women) poor, oppressed women actually have some useful, certainly hard-earned lessons to share, lessons that might turn out useful for anyone wishing to thrive in the modern world. Here are three of mine. Leila Hoteit, Three Lessons on Success from an Arab businesswoman We are often terrified and fascinated by the power hackers now have. They scare us. But the choices they make have dramatic outcomes that influence us all. So I am here today because I think we need hackers, and in fact, they just might be the immune system for the information age. Sometimes they make us sick, but they also find those hidden threats in our world, and they make us fix it. Keren Elazari. Hackers: The Internet’s Immune System Try This — Inspired by TED Master Class After you write your thesis, send it to three people with the question, “Based on what you read here, what do you think my speech will be about?”  

Putting It All Together

At this point, you know you need to have a grabber, a preview, a credibility statement, and a so-what-who-cares statement.  Let’s take a look at one of the top TED talks of all time by Jamie Oliver. This speech is a good illustration of everything we’ve been talking about so far and how all this works together.

A painted sign that says, "stop"

“Everybody close your eyes.”

I don’t want to close my eyes; it makes me feel awkward and exposed to be in a group of people with my eyes closed. Because of that, I keep my eyes open. The problem is  when I keep my eyes open, I feel like some sort of horrible nonconformist rebel. I feel awkward with my eyes closed and I feel guilty if they are open. Either way, I just feel bad. Besides, half of the time when speakers tell audience members to close their eyes, they forget to tell us when we can open them. If you are wanting me to imagine a story, just tell me to imagine it, don’t make me close my eyes (rant over).

“Can everybody hear me?”

You should plan your opening to be intentional and with power. “Can everybody hear me” is a weak and uncertain statement and this is not the first impression you want to leave. Do a microphone check before the audience members arrive and have someone stand in different corners of the room to make sure you can be heard. Don’t waste your valuable speech time with questions that you should already know the answer to.

“How long do I have to speak?”

You should know that before you begin. Even if the presentations for the day are running over and you are the last speaker, you should ask the MC before you begin. Always plan your first words with power.

“Can you read this?”

You should make your slides big, really big. Test out your slides in advance of your speech, walk all around the room and make sure you can read them. Have a friend check them out as well. You should know they are big enough because you planned for it and tested it.

“Turn off your cell phones and laptops.”

People really hate having things taken away, not to mention that your audience may want to take notes on their devices. Chances are you are speaking to adults, let them determine if it is appropriate to have out their technology.

“I’m sorry, I’m losing my voice.” “I’m stopped up.” “I’m under the weather.”

Stop apologizing! Stop making excuses!  While these lines may be true, they just come of as excuses and can make the audience either feel like you don’t want to be there, or they just feel sorry for you.

“I’m so nervous right now.”

Talking about your nervousness will make you more nervous and will make them look for signs of your nervousness. Just start your speech.

“So, Um, Ok.”

Do not start with hesitation. Plan the first words, memorize the first words, practice the first words.  Do not start with “Ok, so um, now I’d like…” Plan strong and start strong.

Do Not Discuss Your Business with People Watching…Really! I Mean It! Many of us are giving and listening to presentations in an online format.  I have attended numerous presentations this year through Zoom where I have to sit and watch while the organizers engage in personal small talk or deal with the details of the presentation. This is how the speech I recently attended began. “Donna, you are going to share your screen, right?” “Yes. I have my PowerPoint ready to go. Will you push “record” when I give the signal?” “Sure. Where did you say that button is again? Do you think we should wait five more minutes, I think we had more who were coming? Dave, what was the total we were expecting?” “Yeah, we had 116 sign up, but the reminders went out late so this may be all we have. We can give them a few more minutes to log on.” “Donna, How is your dog? Is she still struggling with her cone since her spay surgery? My dog never would wear the cone –she tore her stitches out and broke her wound open. It was terrible. Well, it looks like it is about time to begin, thank you everyone for coming.” If you are organizing an event online, hosting a speech online, giving a presentation online–please keep it professional. Most platforms will allow you to keep the audience in a waiting room until it is time to start. If you have a business to deal with, keep the audience out until you have everything ready to go. Once the audience is in the meeting, you should engage the audience in group-type small talk or you should just start the presentation. In professional settings, you should start the meeting on time. Why punish those who showed up on time to wait for those who aren’t there yet?

A Conversation Over Coffee with Bill Rogers

I asked my long-time friend, Bill Rogers, to write an excerpt to add to the book.  I met Bill when he was the Chief Development Officer for a hospital in Northwest Arkansas and I met him again when he was reinventing himself as a college student getting a Master’s Degree in the theater.  He would love to share a symbolic cup of coffee with you and give you advice about public speaking. 

Perfect morning for a walk, isn’t it? Join me for a cup of coffee? Wonderful. Find us a table and I’ll get our coffee.

There you go; just like you like it. There’s nothing like a great cup of coffee on the patio of your neighborhood coffee shop, is there?

Now that you’re settled in your favorite chair, take a sip, and let that glorious caffeine kick in and do its stuff. Okay, let’s talk.

So, you were asking me about public speaking.

Well, let’s see. Where do we begin?

One of the first pieces of advice I ever received was to imagine that every member of your audience is sitting there in their underwear! Yeah, right. That never worked for me. I tried it once with a local civic group of community leaders both male and female. If the intent of that tidbit is to make you relax, it certainly didn’t work for me. It just made me more self-conscious…and more nervous. I not only got distracted, but I also lost my train of thought, I started sweating, and, of course, imagined myself standing there without clothes. Needless to say, that speech was a disaster and I’ve never used it again. I suggest you don’t either.

In the early days, I also relied very heavily on my typed-up speech. Now, there’s nothing wrong with that unless you find yourself reading it word for word as I did. Nothing is more boring nor puts an audience to sleep quicker than a speaker with their nose down reading a speech. There’s no connection and connection with your audience is key.

As you know, I love theatre and I’ve done a bit of acting over the years. Early on, I learned that the quicker I learned my lines, the more I could play, experiment, and shape my character. It relaxed me and gave me enormous freedom. It led me to find a mantra for myself: “With discipline comes freedom.” This freedom will allow you to improvise as your audience or situation dictates while still conveying the core message of your presentation. That discipline and its resulting freedom apply to public speaking of any kind and, I think, will serve you well.

Another old adage we’ve all heard is Aristotle’s advice. You know the one. No? Well, roughly, it’s to tell your audience what you’re going to say, say it, and then tell them what you just said. That’s the basic formula for public speaking. And it works as a good place to start.

However, effective speaking is much more and, to me, it starts with a story or even a simple sentence.

You know the feeling you get when you read the first sentence of a good book and it just reaches out and grabs you? That should be your goal with every presentation. One sentence to capture your audience’s attention. Something that causes them to lean forward. Something that sparks their imagination.

It doesn’t have to be all that profound either. It can be something very simple. A personal story that relates to your topic. A relevant fact or statistic that defines or illustrates the issue or subject matter at hand.

A couple of classics come to mind. The first is Alice Walker’s, “The Color of Purple.”

“You better not tell nobody but God.”

And the second one is from my favorite novel, “To Kill A Mockingbird,” by Harper Lee.

“When he was nearly thirteen, my brother Jem got his arm broken at the elbow.”

Both sentences hook you immediately. A few simple words speak volumes. After reading or hearing those words, you naturally lean in. You want to learn more. You want to find out what happens next. Every effective speech or presentation does the same thing.

Of course, make sure that the first and last thing you say to your audience is both relevant and appropriate. I share this out of an abundance of caution. I once worked for an internationally recognized and well-respected children’s research hospital and I was given the privilege to speak at a national educational convention. The room was filled wall to wall with teachers. I thought I’d be cute and add a little levity. I opened my presentation with this line, “You know, I’ve had nightmares like this…” Instead of the roars of laughter, I was expecting, a wave of silence ensued. Not only was the line not funny, but it was also wholly inappropriate and I immediately lost my audience. Not my best day. Learn from my mistakes.

Finally, let’s touch on the importance of approaching a speech as a conversation. You and I are sitting here enjoying our coffee and having a friendly, relaxed conversation. Strive for that every chance you get. You may not always have that luxury. Some speeches and presentations simply demand formality. But even in those cases, you can usually make it somewhat conversational. I always try to write my speeches in a conversational style. Like I’m talking to a friend…or trying to make a new one.

So, to recap: tell a story, learn your lines, hook your audience with a simple sentence, close with a question or call to action, use repetition, keep it conversational, treat your audience as a friend, and give yourself permission to relax.

Above all, be yourself. Allow yourself to be as relaxed as you are with those closest to you. If you’re relaxed, if you try to think of your audience as a friend, then, in most cases, they too will relax and they will root for you. Even if they disagree with what you are telling them, they will respect you and they will listen.

How about another cup?

Key Takeaways

Remember This!

  • The most important part of your speech is the introduction because if you don’t get their attention, they are not listening to the rest of what you have to say.
  • To get attention, tell a story, use humor, share a quote, tell a startling fact, show a prop, ask a question, reference the occasion.
  • In addition to the grabber, a good introduction should establish rapport and tell the audience why you are credible.
  • An introduction often includes a “so what who cares statement” to tell the audience why this should matter to them.
  • The thesis/preview should be clear enough that someone could read just that sentence or couple of sentences and know what the speech is about.

Please share your feedback, suggestions, corrections, and ideas.

I want to hear from you. 

Do you have an activity to include? Did you notice a typo that I should correct? Are you planning to use this as a resource and do you want me to know about it? Do you want to tell me something that really helped you?

Click here to share your feedback. 

Asch, S. E. (1946). Forming impressions of personality. Journal of Abnormal and Social Psychology, 41, 258-290. https://doi.org/10.1037/h0055756

Anderson, C. (2016). TED talks: The official TED guide to public speaking. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.

Barton, D. (2015). What do top students do differently? TED Talk.[Video] YouTube.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Na8m4GPqA30 Standard YouTube License.

Brooks, R. (2020). SAM Talk: Honesty, courage, and the importance of brushing your teeth. [Video] YouTube.  https://youtu.be/SskgA2hHgFI Standard YouTube License.

Castel, A.D. (2008). Metacognition and learning about primacy and recency effects in free recall: The utilization of intrinsic and extrinsic cues when making judgments of learning. Memory & Cognition, 36, 429–43. https://doi.org/10.3758/MC.36.2.429

Davis, A. (2016). 19 quotes that will inspire you to create an amazing presentation. Inc. https://www.inc.com/alison-davis/19-quotes-that-will-inspire-you-to-create-an-amazing-presentation.html

DeGeneres, E.  (2009). Ellen at Tulane Commencement. [Video] YouTube.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0e8ToRVOtRo Standard YouTube License.

Duarte, N. (n.d.). Be a S.T.A.R. presenter. https://www.duarte.com/be-a-star-presenter/ 

Duarte, N. (n.d.).  Illuminate: Ignite Change Through Speeches, Stories, Ceremonies, and Symbols

Elazari, K. (2014). Hackers: The internet’s immune system. [Video] YouTube.  https://www.ted.com/talks/keren_elazari_hackers_the_internet_s_immune_system?language=en Standard YouTube License.

Elias, R. (2011). Three things I learned while my plane crashed. [Video] YouTube.  https://www.ted.com/talks/ric_elias_3_things_i_learned_while_my_plane_crashed?language=en Standard YouTube License.

Fisher, W.R. (2009). Narration as a human communication paradigm: The case of public moral argument. Communication Monograph s, 51 (1). 1-22. https://doi.org/10.1080/03637758409390180

Gamache, J.A. (2007). Being Mr. G. Toastmasters World Championship. [Video] YouTube.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YoW-T2_6OJo Standard YouTube License.

Goffman, A. (2015). How we are priming some kids for college and others for prison. [Video] YouTube.  https://www.ted.com/talks/alice_goffman_how_we_re_priming_some_kids_for_college_and_others_for_prison/transcript?language=en#t-183504 Standard YouTube License.

Gottman, J. (2018). The science of love.[Video] YouTube.  https://youtu.be/-uazFBCDvVw Standard YouTube License.

Goldacre, B. (2011). Battling bad science. [Video] YouTube.  https://www.ted.com/talks/ben_goldacre_battling_bad_science?language=en Standard YouTube License.

Glaser, E. (1992). Aids address to the 1992 Democratic National Convention.[Video] YouTube.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7z0lbUJWjf4 Standard YouTube License.

Hone, L. (2019). The three secrets of resilient people. [Video] YouTube.  https://youtu.be/NWH8N-BvhAw  Standard YouTube License.

Hoteit, L. (2016). Three lessons on success from an Arab businesswoman. [Video] YouTube.  https://www.ted.com/talks/leila_hoteit_3_lessons_on_success_from_an_arab_businesswoman/transcript?language=en Standard YouTube License.

Karia, A. (2013). How to open and close a TED Talk (or any other speech or presentation). [Video] YouTube.  https://akashkaria.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/01/HowtoOpenandCloseaTEDTalk.pdf Standard YouTube License.

Key, J.  (2016). 2003 World Champion: ‘Never Too Late’ Jim Key, Toastmasters International. [Video] YouTube.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=54Ck5V495dA Standard YouTube License.

King, M.L. (1963).  I have a dream. [Video] YouTube. https://youtu.be/I47Y6VHc3Ms Standard YouTube License.

LaCroix, D. (2001). World champion of public speaking. [Video] YouTube. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FUDCzbmLV-0 Standard YouTube License.

Lieber, D. (2013). The power of storytelling to change the world. [Video] YouTube.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6Bo3dpVb5jw Standard YouTube License.

Lythcott-Haims, J. (2015). How to raise successful kids without overparenting. [Video] YouTube.  https://www.ted.com/talks/julie_lythcott_haims_how_to_raise_successful_kids_without_over_parenting?language=en Standard YouTube License.

Marshall, L. B. (20170. How to hook your audience in 30 seconds: Learn to create catchy speech openings from top contest winners.  https://www.toastmasters.org/magazine/magazine-issues/2017/june2017/hook

Masters, K. (2014). Nipping an education myth in the bud: Poh’s brain activity during lectures. Medical Teacher, 1-4 DOI:  10.3109/014 2159X.2014.916785

McGonigal, K, (2013). How to make stress your friend. Tedtalk. [Video] YouTube.  https://www.ted.com/talks/kelly_mcgonigal_how_to_make_stress_your_friend  Standard YouTube License.

McViker, D. (2015).    Ten phrases that savvy speakers never say.  http://sixminutes.dlugan.com/10-toxic-speech-phrases/

Meade, A. (2013). Your body is my canvas. [Video] YouTube.  https://www.ted.com/talks/alexa_meade_your_body_is_my_canvas?language=en Standard YouTube License.

Medina, J. (2014). Brain rules: 12 principles for surviving and thriving at work, home, and school. Pear Press.

Miller, N. & Campbell, D. T. (1959) Recency and primacy in persuasion as a function of the timing of speeches and measurements. Journal of Abnormal and Social Psychology, 59, 1-9. https://doi.org/10.1037/h0049330

Morgan-Steiner. (2012). Why domestic victims don’t leave. [Video] YouTube.  https://www.ted.com/talks/leslie_morgan_steiner_why_domestic_violence_victims_don_t_leave?language=en Standard YouTube License.

Moth. Storytelling tips and tricks: How to tell a successful story. https://themoth.org/share-your-story/storytelling-tips-tricks

Murdock, B.B., Jr. (1962). The serial position effect of free recall. Journal of Experimental Psychology, 64 (5), 482–488.  https://doi.org/10.1037/h0045106 Neuroskeptic. (2014).  Another education neuromyth debunked . June 29, 2014. https://www.discovermagazine.com/mind/another-education-neuromyth-debunked

Oliver, J. (2010). Teach every child about food. [Video] YouTube.  https://www.ted.com/talks/jamie_oliver_teach_every_child_about_food?language=en Standard YouTube License.

Pease, A. (2013). Body language, the power is in the palm of your hands. [Video] YouTube.  https://youtu.be/ZZZ7k8cMA-4 Standard YouTube License.

Pink, D. (2009). The puzzle of motivation.[Video] YouTube.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rrkrvAUbU9Y&vl=fa Standard YouTube License.

Purdy, A. (2011). Living beyond limits. [Video] YouTube.  https://www.ted.com/talks/amy_purdy_living_beyond_limits?language=en Standard YouTube License.

Qahtani, M. (2015). The power of words.  2015 World Champion, Dhahran, Saudi Arabia. [Video] YouTube.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Iqq1roF4C8s&t=138s Standard YouTube License.

Ratanakul, S. (2017).  A study of problem-solution discourse: Examining TED Talks through the lens of move analysis. LEARN Journal: Language Education and Acquisition Research Network Journal, 10 (2).   https://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/EJ1229624.pdf

Riegel, D. G.  (2019). Stop beginning your speeches with good morning and thank you and start with this instead. Talk Support. [Video] YouTube.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qbq4_Swj0Gg Standard YouTube License.

Rogers, B. (2020). A conversation over coffee. A personal essay was written for this chapter.

Rosling, H. (2014). Don’t panic–the truth about population.[Video] YouTube.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FACK2knC08E Standard YouTube License.

Ross, T. E. (2019). Tracee Ellis Ros is living for herself . [Video] YouTube.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=neU_sum9824. Standard YouTube License.

Sandel, M. (2013). Why we shouldn’t trust markets with our civic life. [Video] YouTube.  https://www.ted.com/talks/michael_sandel_why_we_shouldn_t_trust_markets_with_our_civic_life?language=en Standard YouTube License.

Schulz, K. (2011). Don’t regret, regret. [Video] YouTube.  https://www.ted.com/talks/kathryn_schulz_don_t_regret_regret/details Standard YouTube License.

Siddons, S. (2008).  Chapter 05. how people remember, what they forget . London: Kogan Page Ltd. https://search.proquest.com/books/chapter-05-how-people-remember-what-they-forget/docview/276318853/se-2?accountid=8361

Sinek, S. (2009). How great leaders inspire action. [Video] YouTube.  https://www.ted.com/talks/simon_sinek_how_great_leaders_inspire_action?language=en Standard YouTube License.

Solomon, A. (2013). Depression: The secret we share. [Video] YouTube.  https://www.ted.com/talks/andrew_solomon_depression_the_secret_we_share/up-next?language=en Standard YouTube License.

Stauffer, N. (2019). Moth Grand Slam Story. [Video] YouTube.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BzHZAsyki78 Standard YouTube License.

Toastmasters. (2017). Beginning your speech. The Better Speaker Series.  Toastmasters International -The Better Speaker Series Set

Toastmasters. (2017). Concluding your speech. The Better Speaker Series. Toastmasters International -The Better Speaker Series Set

Toastmasters. (2017).  Creating an introduction.  The Better Speaker Series.  https://www.toastmasters.org/resources/creating-an-introduction.

Tobay, T. (2016). This country isn’t just carbon neutral –it’s carbon negative. [Video] YouTube.  https://www.ted.com/talks/tshering_tobgay_this_country_isn_t_just_carbon_neutral_it_s_carbon_negative/transcript?language=en Standard YouTube License.

Trevino, D. (2020). Guilty. Moth Mainstage.  https://youtu.be/OcHLBkLVoNw

VanEdwards, V. (2020). How to start a speech: The Best (and worst) speech openers. [Video] YouTube.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7tzentBmmUc. Standard YouTube License.

Veitch, J. (2015). This is what happens when you reply to spam email. Ted Talk. [Video] YouTube.  https://www.ted.com/talks/james_veitch_this_is_what_happens_when_you_reply_to_spam_email?language=en Standard YouTube License.

Wilson, E.O. (2012). Advice to a young scientist. [Video] YouTube.  https://www.ted.com/talks/e_o_wilson_advice_to_a_young_scientist?utm_campaign=tedspread&utm_medium=referral&utm_source=tedcomshare Standard YouTube License.

Winston, P. (2019). How to speak by Patrick Winston.[Video] YouTube.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Unzc731iCUY Standard YouTube License.

Yong, E. (2014).  Zombie roaches and other parasite tales. TED Talk  [Video] YouTube.  https://www.ted.com/talks/ed_yong_zombie_roaches_and_other_parasite_tales?language=en Standard YouTube License.

Young, S. (2014). I’m not your inspiration, thank you very much. [Video] YouTube.  https://www.ted.com/talks/stella_young_i_m_not_your_inspiration_thank_you_very_much?language=en Standard YouTube License.

Media Attributions

  • austin-distel-rxpThOwuVgE-unsplash (1) © Austin Distel is licensed under a CC BY (Attribution) license
  • jose-aragones-81QkOoPGahY-unsplash © Jose Aragones is licensed under a CC BY (Attribution) license

Advanced Public Speaking Copyright © 2021 by Lynn Meade is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License , except where otherwise noted.

Share This Book

Blog > Powerful Quotes for your PowerPoint Presentations

Powerful Quotes for your PowerPoint Presentations

07.24.20   •  #powerpointtips.

One of the most powerful ways to begin a presentation is to start by sharing a influential and morable quote that relates to the message of your talk. This can loosen up the beginning, consciously encourage important things while speaking or end the presentation with a meaningful conclusion and underline the main topic again.

This will bring liveliness and power to your presentation and create a more pleasant environment for your audience!

Quotes for presentations. Logic will take you from A to B. Imagination will take you everywhere. Albert Einstein.

Quotes can be funny, inspirational, profound, successful, motivational, meaningless or basically everything! The most important thing is that they fit the today´s topic, correspond to the situation. This means, that they are appropriate and reinforce the actual theme.

If you are looking for great lines you can use in your PowerPoint or other presentations, you are perfectly right here! Read the following article to get inspired and to find a suitable citation you can use for your speech in school, work, business or anywhere and to leave an unforgettable impression on your presentation.

To save time, we have already created PowerPoint Templates below, which you can download for free!

According to time:

Quotes for Beginning

Quotes while presenting, quotes for ending.

According to category:

In case you need more specific citations, have a look at different sections of quotes:

Inspirational / Motivational

With quotations to open your presentation you can represent yourself in a great authentic and relaxed way. The audience gets an exciting insight into the upcoming topic and in the best case can relate with the citation and thus build a sympathetic bond to you as the presenter. And all this is achieved by just one simple sentence.

How we live is what makes us real. Quotes for PowerPoint

Powerful quotes to start your presentation

  • "The secret of getting ahead is getting started." - Mark Twain
  • "If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough." – Albert Einstein
  • "Words may inspire but action creates change." – Simon Sinek
  • "Some people feel the rain. Others just get wet." - Bob Marley
  • "A successful man is one who can lay a firm foundation with the bricks others have thrown at him." – David Brinkley
  • "Yesterday’s home runs don’t win today’s games." - Babe Ruth | Baseball Legend
  • "Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning." - Bill Gates
  • "It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it. If you think about that, you’ll do things differently." - Warren Buffett
  • "The golden rule for every business man is this: Put yourself in your customer’s place." - Orison Swett Marden
  • "You can't blame gravity for falling in love." - Albert Einstein

Using powerful citations while speaking makes your presentation much more exciting and memorable. A meaningful quotation gives your words much more power and emphasis and can additionally emphasize important things. Furthermore, if a listener hears a mentioned citation of your presentation one more time, he will most likely remember you.

Follow that dream. PowerPoint quotes for presentations

Powerful quotes to reinforce essential topics

  • "Some entrepreneurs think how can I make a lot of money? But a better way is to think how can I make people’s lives a lot better? If you get it right, the money will come." - Richard Branson
  • "When Henry Ford made cheap, reliable cars people said, ‘Nah, what’s wrong with a horse?’ That was a huge bet he made, and it worked." - Elon Musk
  • "Please think about your legacy, because you’re writing it every day." – Gary Vaynerchuck
  • "Everyone is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will spend its whole life believing it is stupid." - Albert Einstein
  • "When you find an idea that you can’t stop thinking about, that’s probably a good one to pursue." – Josh James
  • "Don’t worry about failure, you only have to be right once." – Drew Houston
  • "You just have to pay attention to what people need and what has not been done." - Russel Simmmons
  • "If people like you they’ll listen to you, but if they trust you they’ll do business with you." – Zig Ziglar
  • "Don’t build links. Build relationships." – Rand Fishkin
  • "There is no great genius without some touch of madness." – Seneca

opening speech quotes

With citations you have the opportunity to clarify the topic just dealt with in one sentence and it is highly recommended to use this chance. Your audience will remember the end best, as it is the shortest, so it should be well chosen and memorable. It should also match your personality as well as the theme and be catchy.

It always seems impossible, until it's done. Nelson Mandela. Quote for PowerPoint

Powerful quotes to close your presentation

  • "100 percent of the shots you don’t take, don’t go in." – Wayne Gretzky | Hockey Legend
  • "When I’m old and dying. I plan to look back on my life and say ‘Wow, an adventure’ not, ‘Wow, I sure felt safe.’" – Tom Preston Werner
  • "I skate to where the puck is going to be, not where it has been." – Wayne Gretzy
  • "It isn’t what we say or think that denies us, but what we do." – Jane Austen
  • "Get action. Do things; be sane; don’t fritter away your time; create, act, take a place wherever you are and be someone; get action." – Theodore Roosevelt
  • "Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time. We are the ones we’ve been waiting for. We are the change that we seek." – Barack Obama
  • "You have to go wholeheartedly into anything in order to achieve anything worth having." – Frank Lloyd Wright
  • "It always seems impossible until it’s done." – Nelson Mandela
  • "I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work." – Thomas Edison
  • "If you think you are too small to make an impact try going to bed with a mosquito in the room." - Ekaterina Walter

Best citations by category

Stop chasing the money and start chasing the passion. Tony Hsieh. PPT quote

  • "Try not to become a man of success. Rather become a man of value." - Albert Einstein
  • "Stop chasing the money and start chasing the passion." - Tony Hsieh
  • "The way to get started is to quit talking and begin doing." - Walt Disney
  • "Logic will get you from A to B. Imagination will take you everywhere." - Albert Einstein
  • "He who only does what he can will always remain what he is." - Henry Ford

You can't blame gravity for falling in love. -Albert Einstein. Funny quote

  • "Success is like being pregnant, everybody congratulates you, but nobody knows how many times you got fucked." - Author unknown
  • "If you want your children to listen, try talking softly to someone else." - Ann Landers
  • "The difference between stupidity and genius is that genius has its limits." - Albert Einstein
  • "Anger is a hot coal that you hold in your hand while waiting to throw it at someone else." - Buddha

The only thing, that overcomes hard luck is hard work. Harry Golden. Quotes used in PowerPoints

  • "Either you run the day or the day runs you." - Jim Rohn
  • "It's the will not the skill." - Jim Tunney
  • "Happiness is the real sense of fulfillment that comes from hard work." - Joseph Barbara
  • "I have never done that before so I should definitely be able to do it!" - Pippi Longstocking
  • "The only thing that overcomes hard luck is hard work." - Harry Golden

Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning. Bill Gates. Buisness quote.

  • "Paying attention to simple little things that most men neglect makes a few men rich." - Henry Ford
  • "The prize for success is that it unlocks harder challenges with more at stake for next time." - Author unknown
  • "The opposite to good design is always bad design. There is no such thing as no design." - Adam Judge

If you want to be happy, be happy. -Leo Tolstoy. motivational quote

  • "A man is a success if he gets up in the morning and gets to bed at night, and in between he does what he wants to do." - Bob Dylan
  • "The whole secret of a successful life is to find out what is one’s destiny to do, and then do it." - Henry Ford
  • "If you want to be happy, be happy." - Leo Tolstoy
  • "So far you have survived 100% of your worst days." - Author unknown
  • "Great Lessons are only learned when the stakes are high." - Georgina Hobart

Chinese language quote. When written in chinese, the word crisis is composed of two characters. ONe represents Danger and the other one represents opportunity. John F. Kennedy

  • "When written in Chinese, the word 'crisis' is composed of two characters. One represents danger and the other represents opportunity." - John F. Kennedy
  • "When in doubt, don't." - Benjamin Franklin
  • "The higher we are placed, the more humbly we should walk." - Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • "Easy choises, hard life. Hard choices easy life." - Jerzy Gregorek
  • "What you begrudge others will be withheld from yourself." - Author unknown

Now you have 60 quotes you can incorporate into your presentation to stand out from the everyday, all-too-familiar phrases that everyone knows.

But remember: Under no circumstances should they be discriminatory, racist or offensive, so you need to make yourself known in advance through your audience.

Leave your personal impression and convince your audience with simple but incredibly strong lines!

Free PowerPoint Templates

In addition, we have already created some PowerPoint templates for you, which you can download for free. Simply replace the existing quotes or image if you want and adapt the slides to your presentation!

PowerPoint Quote design ideas

What are good quotes for starting a presentation?

By opening your presentation with a quote you can represent yourself in an authentic way. The audience gets an exciting insight into the upcoming topic and in the best case can relate with the quote and thus build a sympathetic bond to you as the presenter. And all this is achieved by just one simple sentence. Here is a list of good quotes to begin a presentation .

What are good quotes for ending a presentation?

With citations you have the opportunity to clarify the topic just dealt with in one sentence and it is highly recommended to use this chance. Your audience will remember the end best, so it should be well chosen and memorable. It should also match your personality as well as the theme and be catchy. Here is a list of good quotes to finish a presentation .

What are powerful quotes for a PowerPoint presentation?

One of the most powerful ways to begin a presentation is to start by sharing a influential and memorable quote that relates to the message of your talk. This can loosen up the beginning, consciously encourage important things while speaking or end the presentation with a meaningful conclusion and underline the main topic again. We have collected 60 powerful quotes for your PowerPoint presentation .

Related articles

About the author.

opening speech quotes

Philipp Angerer

Philipp is a creative supporter at SlideLizard in marketing and design. There he uses his imagination and provides creative freshness, also in blog articles.

opening speech quotes

Get 1 Month for free!

Do you want to make your presentations more interactive.

With SlideLizard you can engage your audience with live polls, questions and feedback . Directly within your PowerPoint Presentation. Learn more

SlideLizard

Top blog articles More posts

opening speech quotes

Effective Feedback for Presentations - digital with PowerPoint or with printable sheets

opening speech quotes

SlideLizard 1.5 Update

SlideLizard Live Polls

Get started with Live Polls, Q&A and slides

for your PowerPoint Presentations

The big SlideLizard presentation glossary

Open questions.

In contrast to closed questions, the answer to open questions can be more detailed and creative. You can convey more information.

Impromptu Speech

A speech that is given without any preparation, notes, or cards, is called an impromptu speech. It is often delivered at private events (e.g., weddings or birthdays) or for training presentation skills.

Horizontal Communication

Horizontal communication is the exchange of information between people, departments or units within the same level of an organisational hierarchy of a company.

Visual Communication

If there are used images or videos for communication, it is visual communication. Visual Communication is almost used everywhere like on television, posts on social media (Instagram, Facebook), advertisement.

Be the first to know!

The latest SlideLizard news, articles, and resources, sent straight to your inbox.

- or follow us on -

We use cookies to personalize content and analyze traffic to our website. You can choose to accept only cookies that are necessary for the website to function or to also allow tracking cookies. For more information, please see our privacy policy .

Cookie Settings

Necessary cookies are required for the proper functioning of the website. These cookies ensure basic functionalities and security features of the website.

Analytical cookies are used to understand how visitors interact with the website. These cookies help provide information about the number of visitors, etc.

Top 15 Inspirational Quotes for Student Speeches

If you're searching for some wisdom, these pithy sayings may help

  • Homework Tips
  • Learning Styles & Skills
  • Study Methods
  • Time Management
  • Private School
  • College Admissions
  • College Life
  • Graduate School
  • Business School
  • Distance Learning
  • M.Ed., Curriculum and Instruction, University of Florida
  • B.A., History, University of Florida

Most high school students will get to experience giving speeches in front of their fellow students. Typically, a speech component is included in at least one of the English classes that students are required to take.

Many students will also make speeches outside of class. They might be running for a leadership position on the student council or a school club, or they might need to give a speech as part of an extracurricular activity or to try and win a scholarship. The lucky few will stand in front of their own graduating class and deliver a speech meant to inspire and motivate their friends and classmates for the future.

These quotes are meant to inspire you and those around you to achieve to the highest degree. Hopefully, these quotes can form an excellent basis for graduation and other speeches .

Inspirational Quotes

Thomas Edison : "If we did the things we are capable of, we would astound ourselves."

Ralph Waldo Emerson : "Hitch your wagon to a star."

Michelangelo : "If you knew how much work went into it, you wouldn't call it genius."

Mother Teresa : "I know God will not give me anything I can't handle. I just wish that He didn't trust me so much."

Walt Disney: "All our dreams can come true—if we have the courage to pursue them."

Dr. Seuss : "Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind."

Winston Churchill : "Success is never final. Failure is never fatal. It is courage that counts."

Henry David Thoreau : "If you have built castles in the air, your work need not be lost; that is where they should be. Now put the foundations under them."

Eleanor Roosevelt : "The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams."

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe : "Whatever you can do, or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it."

Oliver Wendell Holmes: "What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us."

Eddie Rickenbacker: "Courage is doing what you're afraid to do. There can be no courage unless you're scared."

Albert Einstein : "There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle."

David Zucker: "Quit now, you'll never make it. If you disregard this advice, you'll be halfway there."

Thomas Edison: "Many of life's failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up."

  • Memorable Graduation Speech Themes
  • Inspiring Quotes by Eleanor Roosevelt
  • Effective Speech Writing
  • Mary McLeod Bethune Quotes
  • Franklin D. Roosevelt Quotes
  • 46 Back-to-School Quotes to Help Get You Motivated and Inspired
  • Inspirational Quotations for Adult Students
  • 47 Confucius Quotes That Still Ring True Today
  • Difference Between "Quote" and "Quotation": What Is the Right Word?
  • Gloria Steinem Quotes
  • These 4 Quotes Completely Changed the History of the World
  • Martin Luther King Jr. Quotations
  • Famous Thomas Edison Quotes
  • Polyptoton (Rhetoric)
  • 15 Quotes That Will Help You Identify Flattery and Praise
  • Notable Quotes From Five of Martin Luther King’s Speeches

Presentation Playbook Cover

NOW AVAILABLE! The Presentation Playbook Series

  • Trade Show Presenter
  • Testimonials
  • Trade Show Staffing
  • Sample Videos
  • Seminar Speaker

Spark's Presentation & Public Speaking Blog

Public speaking quotes: funny, inspiring insights for your presentation.

Facebook

June 2, 2014

by Andy Saks

Over many years as a professional presenter and speaker, I’ve accumulated a treasure trove of funny, inspiring, insightful public speaking quotes.

These quotes are near and dear to my heart. They’ve helped me immensely, and helped me help others.

Some date back to biblical times. Others are hot off the Twitter press.

Sometimes I show them in a looping slideshow to warm up an audience before a keynote speech or presentation skills training program.

Other times I peek at them when I need some inspiration myself.

And here they are, for the first time, categorized and alphabetized for your presentation pleasure.

Which quotes make you laugh? Which inspire you? Which rub you the wrong way? Which of your favorites should I add? Which did you use in your presentation? Tell me by sharing your comment at the bottom of the page.

QUOTES FOR PUBLIC SPEAKING ANXIETY / FEAR

“According to most studies, people’s number one fear is public speaking. Number two is death. Death is number two. Does that sound right? This means to the average person, if you go to a funeral, you’re better off in the casket than delivering the eulogy.” – Jerry Seinfeld

“All of us are born with a set of instinctive fears, of falling, of the dark, of lobsters, of falling on lobsters in the dark, or speaking before the Rotary Club, or the words ‘some assembly required.’” – Dave Barry

“…and from the first moment that I ever walked on stage in front of a darkened auditorium with a couple of hundred people sitting there, I was never afraid, I was never fearful, I didn’t suffer from stage fright, because I felt so safe on that stage. I wasn’t Patrick Stewart, I wasn’t in the environment that frightened me, I was pretending to be someone else, and I liked the other people I pretended to be. So I felt nothing but security for being on stage. And I think that’s what drew me to this strange job of playing make-believe.” — Patrick Stewart

“Feel the fear of public speaking and do it anyway.” – Arvee Robinson

“I was dreading winning. I didn’t even prepare an acceptance speech. I was worried that I would slip up or do something horrible. I was shaking in my seat, putting on a posed smile. Inside I was petrified.” – Leonardo DiCaprio (at the 1998 Academy Awards)

“It’s all right to have butterflies in your stomach. Just get them to fly in formation.” – Rob Gilbert

“The human brain starts working the moment you are born and never stops until you stand up to speak in public.” – George Jessel

“There are two types of speakers: Those who get nervous and those who are liars.” – Mark Twain

QUOTES ON ASKING QUESTIONS & LISTENING

“Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak, and to sit down and listen.”  – Winston Churchill

“Knowledge speaks, but wisdom listens.” – Jimi Hendrix

“Listening, not imitation, may be the sincerest form of flattery.” – fortune cookie Andy got (really!)

“Nothing calms a person faster than hearing his own ideas repeated back.” – Sandra DeLozier

“One of the best ways to persuade others is with your ears, by listening to them.” – Dean Rusk

“Open your ears before you open your mouth; it may surprise your eyes!” – Earl Nightingale

“Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn.” – Benjamin Franklin

“The finest art of communication is not learning how to express your thoughts. It is learning how to draw out the thoughts of another.” – Ted Tripp

“Two monologues do not make a dialogue.” – Jeff Daly

“You can tell if a man is clever by his answers. You can tell if a man is wise by his questions.” – unknown

QUOTES ON HAVING A GREAT ATTITUDE

“Our attitude towards others determines their attitude towards us.” -Earl Nightingale

“Say what you mean, mean what you say, just don’t say it mean.” – Nguyen Van Tho

“Speak when you are angry and you will make the best speech you’ll ever regret.” – Laurence Peter

“The words you speak today should be soft and tender, for tomorrow you may have to eat them.” – unknown

“Think lovingly, speak lovingly, act lovingly, and every need shall be supplied.” – James Allen

“You have to smile, if you expect anybody to smile back.” – Jonathan Evison

QUOTES ON THE IMPORTANCE OF YOUR AUDIENCE

“Designing a presentation without an audience in mind is like writing a love letter and addressing it: To Whom It May Concern.” – Ken Haemer

“In the preaching moment, there is a liminal moment in which is dawns on you standing there that yes, there is something more going on here that I did not anticipate…You feed of the congregation, because black preaching is so dialogical. The affirmation in that dialogue is the place where you locate revelation.” – Dale Andrews (professor, Boston University, and occasional preacher)

“People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care!” – @mediatraining

“The goal of effective communication should be for listeners to say ‘Me too!’ versus ‘So what?'” – Jim Rohn

“The royal road to a man’s heart is to talk to him about the things he treasures most.” – Dale Carnegie

“To communicate, we must realize that we are all different in the way we perceive the world, and use this understanding as a guide to our communication with others.” – Tony Robbins

“To sway an audience, you must watch them as you speak.” – C. Kent Wright

“When are you going to understand that if it doesn’t pertain to me, I’m not interested?” – Candace Bergen as Murphy Brown

QUOTES ON CLARITY, SIMPLICITY AND WORD CHOICE IN SPEAKING

“Eloquence is the essential thing in a speech, not information.” – Mark Twain

“I understand a fury in your words, but not your words.” – William Shakespeare, Othello

“If we use common words on a great occasion, they are the more striking because they are felt at once to have a particular meaning, like old banners, or everyday clothes, hung up in a sacred place.” – George Eliot

“If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough.” – Albert Einstein

“If you can’t write your message in a sentence, you can’t say it in an hour.” – Dianna Booher

“If you can’t state your position in eight words, you don’t have a position. “ – Seth Godin

“One day I will find the right words, and they will be simple.” – Jack Kerouac

“Precision of communication is important, more important than ever, in our era of hair-trigger balances, when a false or misunderstood word may create as much disaster as a sudden thoughtless act.” – James Thurber

“Speak clearly, if you speak at all. Carve every word before you let it fall.” – Oliver Wendell Holmes

“The ability to simplify means to eliminate the unnecessary so that the necessary may speak.” – Hans Hoffman

“The difference between the almost-right word and the right word is really a large matter–’tis the difference between the lightning bug and the lightning.” — Mark Twain

“The great enemy of clear language is insincerity. When there is a gap between one’s real and one’s declared aims, one turns as it were instinctively to long words and exhausted idioms, like cuttlefish squirting out ink.” – George Orwell

“The way something is presented will define the way you react to it.” – Neville Brody

“Think like a wise man but communicate in the language of the people.” – William Butler Yeats

“Those who run to long words are mainly the unskillful and tasteless; they confuse pomposity with dignity, flaccidity with ease, and bulk with force.” – H.W. Fowler

QUOTES DEFINING PUBLIC SPEAKING AND PRESENTATIONS

“A presentation is a chance to share, not an oral exam.” – M.F. Fensholt

“All speaking is public speaking, whether it’s to one person or a thousand.” – Roger Love

“Eloquence is the power to translate a truth into language perfectly intelligible to the person to whom you speak.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

“Proper words in proper places make the true definition of a style.” – Jonathan Swift

“Speech is power. Speech is to persuade, to convert, to compel. It is to bring another out of his bad sense into your good sense.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

“Through the picture, I see reality. Through the word, I understand it.” – Sven Lidman

“To speak and to speak well are two things. A fool may talk, but a wise man speaks.” – Ben Jonson

“Words do two major things: they provide food for the mind and create light for understanding and awareness.” – Jim Rohn

“Words. Words, when spoken out loud for the sake of performance, are music. They have rhythm, and pitch, and timbre, and volume. These are the properties of music, and music has the ability to find us and move us and lift us up in ways that literal meaning can’t.” – Martin Sheen as President Bartlet, The West Wing

FUNNY QUOTES ON PUBLIC SPEAKING & PRESENTATIONS

“Don’t be afraid to talk to yourself. It’s the only way you can be sure somebody’s listening.” – F.P. Jones

“Every speaker has a mouth, an arrangement rather neat. Sometimes it’s filled with wisdom, sometimes it’s filled with feet.” – Robert Orben

“Light travels faster than sound. That’s why certain people appear bright until you hear them speak.” – Albert Einstein

“Look your audience straight in the eyes, and begin to talk as if every one of them owed you money.” – Dale Carnegie

“My job is to talk; your job is to listen. If you finish first, please let me know.”  – Harry Herschfield

“Never argue with a fool, onlookers may not be able to tell the difference.” – Mark Twain

“Public speaking is very easy.” – Dan Quayle

“Speak the truth, but leave immediately after.” – Slovenian proverb

“The single biggest problem with communication is the illusion that it’s taken place.” – George Bernard Shaw

QUOTES ON HONESTY IN SPEAKING

“Get your facts first, then you can distort them as you please.” – Mark Twain

“I didn’t lie. I was writing fiction in my mouth.” – Homer Simpson

“Speech is a mirror of the soul. As a man speaks, so is he.” – Publilius Syrus

“Teach the tongue to say ‘I do not know.’” – Maimonides

“When the eyes say one thing, and the tongue another, a practiced man relies on the language of the first.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

QUOTES ON HUMOR IN PRESENTATIONS & PUBLIC SPEAKING

“Humor is a rubber sword – it allows you to make a point without drawing blood.” – Mary Hirsch

“Humor is treacherous. It can charm, coax, and persuade, but it can also distract, baffle or alienate the audience.” – Eugene Finerman

“I learned at an early age that when I made people laugh, they liked me. This is a lesson I never forgot.” – Art Buchwald

“If you want to tell people the truth, make them laugh, otherwise they’ll kill you.” – Oscar Wilde

“Once you get people laughing, they’re listening and you can tell them almost anything.” – Herbert Gardner

“The human race has one really effective weapon, and that is laughter.” -Mark Twain

QUOTES ON THE POWER AND IMPORTANCE OF SPEAKING

“Electric communication will never be a substitute for the face of someone who with their soul encourages another person to be brave and true.” – Charles Dickens

“Half the world is composed of people who have something to say and can’t, and the other half of people who have nothing to say and keep saying it.” – Robert Frost

“I speak for the trees, for the trees have no tongues.” – Dr. Seuss, The Lorax

“If all my talents were to be taken from me by some inscrutable providence, and I had to make a choice of keeping but one, I would unhesitatingly ask to keep the power of speaking, because through it, I would quickly recover all the rest.” – Daniel Webster

“The newest computer can merely compound, at speed, the oldest problem in the relations between human beings, and in the end the communicator will be confronted with the old problem, of what to say and how to say it.” – Edward R. Murrow

“The tongue has the power of life and death.” – Solomon

“The tongue is like a sharp knife. It kills without drawing blood.” – Buddha

“When nobody speaks your name, or even knows it, you, knowing it, must be the first to speak it.” – Marlon Riggs

“Improve your communication skills and you will earn fifty percent more money over your lifetime…In my office you’ll not see the degree I got from the University of Nebraska. You’ll not see the master’s degree I got from Columbia. But you’ll see the award certificate I got from the [public] speaking course.” – Warren Buffett

INSPIRING PUBLIC SPEAKING QUOTES

“Between your brain and your mouth (or your fingers) is magic: your power to choose what you say next. Use that magic.” – Chris Brogan

“Oratory should raise your heart rate. Oratory should blow the doors off the place.” – Rob Lowe as Sam Seaborn, The West Wing

“The difference between a good speech and a great speech is the energy with which the audience comes to their feet at the end. Is it polite? Is it a chore? Are they standing up because their boss just stood up? No. You want it to come from their socks.” – Rob Lowe as Sam Seaborn, The West Wing

“The world is made up of words. And if you know the words that the world is made of, you can make of it whatever you wish.” – Terence McKenna

“The world is waiting for your words.” – Arvee Robinson

“Your words can make you rich” – Dr. Donald Moine

QUOTES ON OPENING LINES IN PUBLIC SPEAKING

“He who fails to please in his salutation and address is at once rejected, and never obtains an opportunity of showing his latest excellences or essential qualities.” – Samuel Johnson

“You had me at ‘Hello.’” – Renee Zellweger as Dorothy Boyd in Jerry Maguire

QUOTES ON PASSION IN PUBLIC SPEAKING & PRESENTATIONS

“Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don’t matter, those who matter don’t mind.” – Dr. Seuss

“Effective communication is 20% what you know and 80% how you feel about what you know.” – Jim Rohn 

“I don’t like to hear cut-and-dried sermons. When I hear a man preach, I like to see him act as if he were fighting bees!” – Abraham Lincoln

“It doesn’t matter how elegant the argument or inspiring the prose, a presentation won’t move anyone if the presenter isn’t visibly feeling what they are saying.” – John Neffinger, KNP Communications

“Technique alone is never enough. You have to have passion. Technique alone is just an embroidered pot holder.” – Raymond Chandler

“The best speeches come from the heart and reflect your passion. Speak as if your life depended on it.” – Arvee Robinson

“They may forget what you said, but they will never forget how you made them feel.” – Carol Buchner

“When genuine passion moves you, say what you’ve got to say, and say it hot.” – D.H. Lawrence

“You can speak well if your tongue can deliver the message of your heart.” – John Ford

“You cannot speak that which you do not know. You cannot share that which you do not feel.” – Jim Rohn

QUOTES ON POWERPOINT PRESENTATIONS

“A designer knows he or she has achieved perfection, not when there is nothing left to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.” – Nolan Haims

“If God is in the details, then the Devil is in PowerPoint.” – @AngryPaulRand

“The more strikingly visual your presentation is, the more people will remember it. And more importantly, they will remember you.” – Paul Arden

QUOTES ON PREPARATION IN PUBLIC SPEAKING

“All Abe Lincoln needed was a pencil and paper to make his speech at Gettysburg.” – @TipsForSpeakers

“All the great speakers were bad speakers at first.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

“Communication works for those who work at it.” – John Powell

“Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first four sharpening the axe.” – Abraham Lincoln

“If you wing it when speaking, you’ll get wing it results.” – Arvee Robinson

“It usually takes more than three weeks to prepare a good impromptu speech.” – Mark Twain

“Let he who would be moved to convince others be first moved to convince himself.” – T. Carlyle

“Take advantage of every opportunity to practice your communication skills, so that when important occasions arise, you will have the gift, the style, the sharpness, the clarity, and the emotions to affect other people.” – Jim Rohn

QUOTES ON SALES PRESENTATIONS

“Good listeners generally make more sales than good talkers.” – B.C. Holwick

“He that has no silver in his purse should have silver on his tongue.” – Thomas Fuller

“If you can’t say it, you can’t sell it!” – Arvee Robinson

“Samson killed a thousand men with the jawbone of an ass. That many sales are killed every day with exactly the same weapon.” – unknown

“The single most important tool in selling is being able to communicate effectively.” – Dan Brent Burt

QUOTES ON SILENCE IN PUBLIC SPEAKING

“It’s the space you put between the notes that make the music.” – Massimo Vignelli

“Let thy speech be better than silence, or be silent.” – Dionysius of Halicarnassus

“Remember that silence is sometimes the best answer.” – cowboy saying

“Speak only if you can improve upon silence.” – unknown

“Talking is like playing the harp; there is as much in laying the hand on the strings to stop their vibrations as in twanging them to bring out their music.” – Oliver Wendell Holmes

“The most precious things in speech are pauses.” – Ralph Richardson

“Tis better to be silent and be thought a fool than to speak and remove all doubt.” – Abraham Lincoln

QUOTES ON SMILING IN PUBLIC SPEAKING

“So much is said with the electricity of the eyes, the intensity of a whisper. Less is more.” – Elizabeth Taylor

“Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the  smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around.” – Leo Buscaglia

“Your smile is a messenger of your goodwill.” – Dale Carnegie

QUOTES ON SPEED AND BREVITY IN PUBLIC SPEAKING

“A fool uttereth all his mind.” – Proverbs 29:11

“A sentence should contain no unnecessary words, a paragraph no unnecessary sentences, for the same reason that a drawing should have no unnecessary lines and a machine no unnecessary parts.” – William Strunk, Jr.

“A speech is like a love affair. Any fool can start one, but it requires considerable skill to end it.” – unknown

“Be sincere, be brief, be seated.” – Franklin Roosevelt

“Blessed is the man who, having nothing [more] to say, refrains from giving us wordy evidence of the fact.” – George Eliot

“For effective communication, use brevity. Jesus said, ‘Follow me.’ Now that’s brief!” – Jim Rohn

“He who talks more is sooner exhausted.” – Lao Tzu

“If it takes a lot of words to say what you have in mind, give it more thought.” – Dennis Roth

“If you want me to speak for an hour, I am ready today. If you want me to speak for just a few minutes, it will take me a few weeks to prepare.” – Mark Twain

“It is my ambition to say in ten sentences what other men say in whole books.” – Nietzsche

“It is with words as with sunbeams. The more they are condensed, the deeper they burn.” – Robert Southey

“It’s better to say nothing than spend 1,000 words or an hour speech saying nothing. Get to the point.” – Richard Branson

“It’s quite simple: say what you have to say and when you come to a sentence with a grammatical ending, sit down.” – Winston Churchill

“Make sure you have stopped speaking before your audience has stopped listening.” – Dorothy Sarnoff

“Never write if you can speak; never speak if you can nod; never nod if you can wink.” – Martin Lomasney

“Public speaking is the art of diluting a two-minute idea with a two-hour vocabulary.” – Evan Esar

“The best speech has a good beginning and a good ending – and has them close together.” – unknown

“The best way to make a good speech is to have a good beginning and a good ending – and have them close together.” – unknown

“The most valuable of all talents is that of never using two words when one will do.” – Thomas Jefferson

“The secret of being a bore is to tell everything.” – Voltaire

“Think all you speak, but speak not all you think. Thoughts are your own; your words are so no more.” – Patrick Delany

“To make a speech immortal, you don’t have to make it everlasting.” – unknown

“What is powerful is when what you say is just the tip of the iceberg of what you know.” – Jim Rohn

QUOTES ON STORYTELLING IN PRESENTATIONS

“Every story has its time to be told.” – Sekou Sundiata

“Stories open the hearts of your listeners, and then their wallets.” – Arvee Robinson

QUOTES ON WORDS VERSUS ACTIONS

“Be content to act, and leave the talking to others.” – Baltasa

“One deed is worth a thousand speeches.” – American proverb

“People may doubt what you say, but they will believe what you do.” – unknown

“The way to get started is to quit talking and begin doing.” – Walt Disney

“Words may show a man’s wit, but actions, his meaning. “ – Benjamin Franklin

ABOUT SPARK PRESENTATIONS

Andy Saks, Spark Presentations

Spark owner and speaking quote compiler Andy Saks

Spark Presentations is a private company founded in 1998 that provides presentation skills training and speech coaching for executives, salespeople, marketers and other businesspeople, plus booth staff training for trade show exhibitors.

Spark also books professional presenters and public speakers to represent its clients at high-profile events, in roles like keynote speaker, trade show booth presenter, master of ceremonies (emcee) and auctioneer, as well as on camera talent and voice talent.

Spark’s client list includes large corporations like AT&T, Best Buy, Covidien, FedEx, Hyundai, Intel, Kimberly-Clark, Owens-Corning, Panasonic, Samsung, Sony, and Volvo; high-tech industry players like AMD, Atrion, Citrix, Gigamon, and Symantec; service organizations like Vistage, 1nService and NERCOMP; and New England institutions like Community Rowing and the Boston Jewish Film Festival.

Spark’s owner, Andy Saks, is also the author of The Presentation Playbook Series: Be a Most Valuable Presenter (MVP) , a three-volume series of books that help businesspeople master common presentation situations by building and running speaking “plays” like a coach or player calls a key play in a game. Volume 1 is available now in print and PDF formats on Spark’s website and at these online retailers and formats:  Amazon print , Amazon Kindle , Apple iBooks and Barnes & Noble print and Nook .

For questions, quotes or orders, contact Andy Saks at 781-454-7600, email or Spark’s Contact page .

Posted in: Sparky Says: Presentation & Public Speaking Tips | 1 Comment

Tags: public speaking tips

One comment

by Melissa Johnson | August 2, 2017 at 9:45 am

Good stuff!

Leave a Reply Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment.

Notify me of follow-up comments by email.

Notify me of new posts by email.

Search Spark’s Blog

Spark news: coming (& recent) attractions.

  • Spark booth presenter shines at Las Vegas tech show
  • Navy SEAL fundraiser books charity auctioneer Andy Saks
  • Boston awards event books Spark master of ceremonies
  • Read all Coming (& Recent) Attractions

Sparky Says: Presentation & Public Speaking Tips

  • 10 Tips to Boost Donations at Your Fund the Need / Paddle Raise
  • 7 Tips to Encourage Audience Questions in Your Presentation Q&A
  • 10 PowerPoint Alternatives That Make Your Presentation Memorable
  • Read all Sparky Says (Speaking Tips)

Presentation Frequently Asked Questions

  • Trade show presenter 101: Your guide to booking a booth presenter (Part 1)
  • Sales presentation skills: How much is your pitch actually worth?
  • How do I hire the right trade show presenter?
  • Read all Presentation FAQ

Spark's Client Success Stories

  • Emcee tips: How Spark’s master of ceremonies made AT&T’s awards dinner fun
  • Trade show booth ideas: How to get the most value from your presenter
  • Trade show booth ideas: Recycle your presentation script
  • Read all Spark Success Stories

Spark Presentations

Andy Saks, Owner & Lead Speaker

781-454-7600 | Email | Contact page

Don't miss exclusive Spark deals! Sign up for your Spark e-newsletter today.

opening speech quotes

Big Fish Presentations Designing and delivering experiences through Presentation Design, Presentation Training, and Video Production.

The big fish blog, 25 awesome public speaking quotes.

Preorder our new book, “The Big Fish Experience” to see everything we’ve learned over the years, all the resources we use to do what we do, and our tips on how to present experiences.

Public speaking is the number one fear in America.  Death is number two.

From sweaty palms to cracking voices, speaking publicly can be terrifying, yet it is a crucial skill to have in the business world.  We’d like to alleviate some of this stress by offering up some inspirational, informative quotes.  These quotes are in no particular order, and the speakers range from well-known orators to presentation gurus.  Some are serious, some are classic, and some are short and funny.  Feel free to spread these around, write them in your journals, whatever you want! Enjoy!

“You can speak well if your tongue can deliver the message of your heart.”  -John Ford  

“Be still when you have nothing to say; when genuine passion moves you, say what you’ve got to say, and say it hot.”  -D. H. Lawrence  

“Let thy speech be better than silence, or be silent.”  -Dionysius Of Halicarnassus  

“What we say is important… for in most cases the mouth speaks what the heart is full of.”  -Jim Beggs  

“If you can’t write your message in a sentence, you can’t say it in an hour.”  -Dianna Booher  

“There are always three speeches, for every one you actually gave. The one you practiced, the one you gave, and the one you wish you gave.” – Dale Carnegie

“It usually takes me more than three weeks to prepare a good impromptu speech.”  – Mark Twain

“A good orator is pointed and impassioned.”  -Marcus T. Cicero

“Oratory is the power to talk people out of their sober and natural opinions.”  – Joseph Chatfield

“He who wants to persuade should put his trust not in the right argument, but in the right word. The power of sound has always been greater than the power of sense.”  – Joseph Conrad

“There are three things to aim at in public speaking: first, to get into your subject, then to get your subject into yourself, and lastly, to get your subject into the heart of your audience.”  – Alexander Gregg

“The success of your presentation will be judged not by the knowledge you send but by what the listener receives.”  – Lilly Walters

“If you don’t know what you want to achieve in your presentation your audience never will.”  – Harvey Diamond

“Best way to conquer stage fright is to know what you’re talking about.”  – Michael H Mescon

“There are only two types of speakers in the world. 1. The nervous and 2. Liars.”  – Mark Twain

“No one ever complains about a speech being too short!”  – Ira Hayes

“90% of how well the talk will go is determined before the speaker steps on the platform.”  – Somers White

“It takes one hour of preparation for each minute of presentation time.”  – Wayne Burgraff

“The most precious things in speech are the pauses.”  – Sir Ralph Richardson

“Well-timed silence hath more eloquence than speech.”  – Martin Fraquhar Tupper

“They may forget what you said, but they will never forget how you made them feel.”  – Carl W. Buechner

“The problem with speeches isn’t so much not knowing when to stop, as knowing when not to begin.”  – Frances Rodman

“Words have incredible power. They can make people’s hearts soar, or they can make people’s hearts sore.” -Dr. Mardy Grothe

“Speech is power: speech is to persuade, to convert, to compel.”  -Ralph Waldo Emerson

“The right word may be effective, but no word was ever as effective as a rightly timed pause.”  – Mark Twain

Tags: 25 , art , audience , awesome blog , big fish , big fish presentations , blog , cool blog , emerson , entrepreneur , entrepreneurship , famous quotes , john ford , mark twain , presentation , public speaking , quotes , speakers , speaking , speech

' src=

These are 25 quotes that every writer on oratory as well as every orator need to have in his or her repertory of quotes. The one by Martin Fraquhar Tupper, “Well-timed silence hath more eloquence than speech.” is a special favorite of mine because I’m always telling the new speakers that I mentor to pause when speaking as an alternative to using filler words when they need a moment to gather their thoughts. A well-laced pause can add dramatic impact to a speech while filler words do nothing but detract from the quality of ones speech.

' src=

We completely agree. Pausing adds that special dramatic impact. Filler words like “umm” and “ahh” can get dangerous if used too much…

' src=

Thank you!!!!

No problem, Jon! We’re glad you liked it! Stay tuned for more!

' src=

I just stumbled across this blog, and I love those Mark Twain quotes. What a genius, that man.

' src=

We completely agree, Mike! Make sure to subscribe to our blog for more posts!

Share your opinion. Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment.

Notify me of follow-up comments by email.

Notify me of new posts by email.

Subscribe to Big Fish’s Blog

​Want to stay up-to-date with us? Subscribe and you'll know every time we have a new post. You'll also get our monthly newsletter AND a free copy of our eBook "The Building of Stories," because we're just so nice.

  • Name First Last
  • Phone This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.
  • Big Fish News (21)
  • Casual Fridays (6)
  • Entrepreneurship (13)
  • Guest Posts (5)
  • Presentation Breakdowns (80)
  • Presentation Design (11)
  • Presentation Theory (33)
  • Public Speaking (31)
  • Sample Chapters (5)
  • SlideShare (7)
  • Uncategorized (6)
  • Videos (11)

Follow Big Fish

Subscribe via RSS

WE WROTE A BOOK!

​In it, you’ll find our step-by-step techniques, the best tips on new presentation tools, innovative ways to deliver your ideas, case studies of presentations, as well as ways to recover if things go wrong.

Where's the best place to send your

Free storytelling ebook, yolo design is now, new name, same awesome team.

Five years ago YOLO Design started out as a small passion project between friends. We've come a long way since then - learning, growing, and rising to challenges every step of the way. We've rebranded to celebrate our growth as a company. Read more about it on our new blog , or go straight to the awesome new site .

We are happy to announce that we are now part of the ThreeSixtyEight family. Our shop has joined forces with Hatchit Co to launch a full service digital experience agency that challenges brands to embrace their creative confidence through web, video, and digital brand strategy. Come over and say hello! If you’re just looking for presentation services though, please just exit out this box and continue along. Our team is always happy in helping you deliver an experience.

opening speech quotes

  • Speech Writing
  • Delivery Techniques
  • PowerPoint & Visuals
  • Speaker Habits
  • Speaker Resources

Speech Critiques

  • Book Reviews
  • Browse Articles
  • ALL Articles
  • Learn About Us
  • About Six Minutes
  • Meet Our Authors
  • Write for Us
  • Advertise With Us

How to Use Quotes in Your Speech: 8 Benefits and 21 Tips

In this article, we examine eight benefits of using quotations in your speech, and then discuss twenty-one tips for superpowering your speech with effective quotes.

  • Speech Quotations
  • Rhetorical Questions
  • Triads (the Rule of Three)
  • Parallelism

Benefits of Using Quotations in Your Speech

There are numerous benefits to crafting quotations into your speech, including:

  • The primary reason to quote material in your speech is that it reinforces your ideas . A quotation offers a second voice echoing your claims, but is more powerful than simply repeating yourself in different words.
  • Quotations usually offer a concise, memorable phrasing of an idea. (This is why the quotation gets remembered and repeated, isn’t it?)
  • Using a quotation boosts your credibility because it implies that the person you are quoting agrees with the rest of your argument.
  • Most people do not have the ability to spontaneous offer relevant quotes to support their statements. So, when you deliver a quotation, it demonstrates your domain knowledge and preparation .
  • Quotations are one way to add variety to your logical arguments , along with facts, statistics, stories, metaphors, and other material. Audiences get bored if you offer a one-dimensional string of arguments of the same type.
  • Depending on how you deliver the quotation, you can create anticipation, suspense, or drama . For example, if you begin “Microsoft founder Bill Gates once said…” followed by a pause, then your audience will surely anticipate your next words. What did he say? What did he say?
  • Conversely, you might choose a quotation which adds humor to your presentation , due to the content of the quote or perhaps the person you are quoting.
  • If you are delivering with visuals, you might choose to display the quotation on a slide and let your audience read it. This creates a natural and purposeful pause in your vocal delivery , allowing you to check your notes, take a sip of water, and collect your thoughts.

Tips for Using Quotations in Your Speech

Okay, you are convinced of the benefits of incorporating quotations into your speech. But how do you do it? Who should you quote? When should you give the quotation? Read on to discover numerous tips for using quotes effectively in your presentations.

Do your Research

  • Make sure you get the phrasing correct. A quotation should boost your credibility, but quoting inaccurately weakens your credibility. A sloppy quotation makes you look lazy.
  • Get a reliable source. Wikipedia doesn’t count. Your credibility is on the line.
  • Beware quoting out-of-context. Be careful when quoting material on controversial topics. Make sure you understand the intent of the speaker, not only their words. A quotation taken out of context where you’ve garbled the meaning makes you look like you are deliberately misleading your audience.

Quote People Your Audience Knows

  • Quote a well-known expert in the field. Don’t quote individuals based purely on their fame or success; base your decision on their expertise in the subject area you are talking about. Quote Aristotle on philosophy or Serena Williams on tennis — doing the opposite gets you in trouble.
  • Quote a lesser-known expert in the field, but only with background context. If your desired quote comes from someone who your audience won’t immediately recognize, you’ll need to introduce the speaker and establish their credibility before delivering their quote.
  • Quote an earlier speaker at your event. Suppose you are speaking at an event where an earlier speaker made some statements relevant to your message. Referring back to their words will not only impress your audience, but also capitalize on the earlier speaker’s effectiveness.
  • Quote yourself (playfully). I’ve done this many times, and it always receives a positive audience response. One way I do this is to introduce a particularly important point as “Dlugan’s First Law of ( whatever topic I’m speaking on )”

Use your own words to open and close; quote in the middle.

  • Open your speech with a quote (sparingly). Starting with a quote can be effective, but don’t assume just  any quotation will grab your audience’s attention. I’ve watched speakers open with a quotation that wasn’t very powerful, and even irrelevant to their content. There are usually more powerful ways to grab your audience’s attention.
  • Avoid closing your speech with a quote. I have heard speeches end strong with a quotation, usually when the quote refers back to the beginning. However, I would not advise it generally. Your final words should be your own. Ending with a quote is often a sign that you don’t have confidence in your own words.
  • Quotations work best in the body of your speech. The best time to introduce a quote is when you need more support for one of your arguments. One particularly effective time is near the end of a section. Reinforcing your arguments with a quotation brings good closure to your argument.

Draw attention to the quote through your delivery.

  • The traditional formula is okay. Most quotations are introduced simply: Albert Einstein once said “It’s not that I’m so smart, it’s just that I stay with problems longer.” This simple formula is clear, direct, and acceptable.
  • Reading the quote from notes is okay. When possible, I would advise delivering the quote from memory. But sometimes, reading it can be better. If the quote is lengthy, for example, it’s better to read it to ensure you are accurate. Even a short quote can be read from notes effectively. I once saw a speaker who produced the note paper from his pocket, and was almost reverent as he read it. In this case, it could be argued that not reading it would have been disrespectful.
  • Or, let your audience read the quote. If you are using visuals, you might choose to display the quotation. When you do this, do NOT read it to your audience. Let them read it. (Remember, you should never read material to your audience when they can see the words.) This technique has an added benefit: you can stylize the slide to add impact. For example, you might add a photo of the speaker, or perhaps use a font which conveys mood.
  • Pause before and after. You should pause briefly before the quote (a little suspense, and to grab attention) and then a little longer after the quote (to allow the meaning of the quotation to be absorbed by your audience.) Give the quotation respect, and let its impact be felt.
  • Spice up your vocal delivery. Of course, you should be varying your voice throughout your presentation. Just like other key statements in your speech, a quotation deserves a little extra vocal emphasis. Maybe louder, maybe softer. Maybe happier, maybe sadder. Let the mood of the quote guide your delivery.
  • Set the context when necessary. Some quotations stand on their own, but other quotations won’t be effective unless you establish the context first. A quotation which has your audience guessing is a missed opportunity. Perhaps you need to give the historical context, or explain something about the life of the speaker. Make sure the quotation has maximum impact.

Use trustworthy sources.

  • Quotation compilations keep quotes within arm’s reach. Every serious speaker should own at least one quotation compilation. ( Bartlett’s Familiar Quotations is my personal favorite, ever since I first found a copy of a previous edition on my brother’s bookshelf 30 years ago.) A well-edited compilation provides several sort indices to help you find the perfect quote faster. An added benefit is that these types of sources should be trustworthy.
  • Biographies of famous people in your field are also rich sources. For example, a biography on Steve Jobs is sure to have numerous quotable lines on his business philosophy. Like quotation compilations, biographies are generally trustworthy.
  • Online quotation search engines offer unparalleled breadth. Quotation websites help you find quotations using a given keyword or spoken by a given person. It’s quick and easy, but the sources cannot always be trusted. Whenever I use these sources, I seek out a second source to verify. (Be careful, many quotation websites might use the same flawed source…)

Be selective.

  • Don’t use a quote that everyone knows. If your audience has heard the quote before, you will receive virtually no benefit from repeating it.
  • Don’t overdo it. There’s no rule about how many quotes you should use, but their effectiveness gets diluted if you use too many. Remember that your speech should primarily be told with your words, not someone else’s. Keep just the best quotes you found in your research, and trim the others.

What do you think?

How do you like using quotations in your speeches? Please share with others by adding a comment .

Please share this...

This is one of many public speaking articles featured on Six Minutes . Subscribe to Six Minutes for free to receive future articles.

Add a Comment Cancel reply

E-Mail (hidden)

Subscribe - It's Free!

Similar articles you may like....

  • 15 Tactics to Establish Ethos: Examples for Persuasive Speaking
  • What is Ethos and Why is it Critical for Speakers?
  • Ethos, Pathos, Logos: 3 Pillars of Public Speaking
  • 10 Presentation Bad Habits My College Students – And You – Must UN-Learn (Part 2)
  • How to Research Your Speech Topic
  • Presentation Power: Four Ways to Persuade

Find More Articles Tagged:

16 comments.

Excellent post. Doing your research is vital. In January I blogged about some people who quoted Penn State football coach Joe Paterno after he’d gone from famous to infamous: http://joyfulpublicspeaking.blogspot.com/2012/01/preparation-is-vital-before-using.html

Yesterday I blogged about how two apparently startling statistics weren’t really that impressive: http://joyfulpublicspeaking.blogspot.com/2012/09/is-540-million-minutes-per-day-large.html

Great advice! I appreciate that you tell speakers to use quotations that we DON’T already know. Too often, speakers use tired quotations and it doesn’t add benefit to the presentation.

Andrew, I am trying something a bit different with quotes for one of my advanced Toastmaster speeches,…the speech is about the importance of the words we say as told to me by an elderly friend of mine who is a survivor of Auschwitz. There are two powerful, but simple, quotes during the speech and I’ve decided to imitate my friend’s German accent to make the quotes more meaningful and memorable. I’ve never heard anyone in my club purposely use a different accent to make quotes in their speech stand out more. I’m interested to see how this will work.

Generally, I think delivering the quote using an accent is a great idea. This makes it much more like storytelling and is one way to create a meaningful context for your audience.

A couple things to consider: 1) Practice. Make sure that adding an accent doesn’t prevent you from accurately quoting. 2) Make sure that the quote is still clear with an accent. If your audience cannot understand the words, it will be less effective.

the article is so helpful and clearly understandable.thumbs up.

Great topic to post about Andrew, You make some really good points!

Definitely agree re:using quotes not everyone knows. You see the same quotes repeated to death on the internet – and esp. twitter (“you are what you repeatedly do”, anyone?) that the audience rolls their eyes and thinks ‘you prepared this?’ when they hear one in a talk.

Thanks for the tips. I have just referenced your article in my blog post about using quotes in high-tech presentations.

Thanks Andrew – I really enjoyed this post.

It inspired me to come up with 6 more tips for using quotes: http://remotepossibilities.wordpress.com/2012/10/05/how-to-use-quotes-in-your-presentation-tips-six-minutes/

Hope you find them helpful!

Thanks for extending the discussion, Craig.

Lots of good points here. But I disagree about never using familiar quotes. In some cases, if you using a known quote to say something new or unexpected, it can be very effective, and often funny and memorable. P.S. #11 “stay” with problems longer. 🙂

Yes, if the known quote can be interpreted in a fresh way from a new perspective, then it may have value. Unfortunately, these common quotes are used predictably… and that’s boring.

Thanks for the typo alert, Shelly. It has been fixed.

Andrew: Great advice to not read the quote, but let the audience read the quote and then have the presenter comment on the quote and it’s meaning as it relates to the topic.

Enjoyed this article will be able to direct my speech students to your website for some good presentation tips

I completely disagree with most of this. It’s almost always feeble lazy technique to throw in a ‘famous’ quote into a speech. Why? Does not a speaker have original language of his/her own? Isn’t it annoying or presumptuous to try to dignify one’s own words with language appropriated from other people? Yes, using a quotation shows your ‘preparation’. It also shows that you’re unable to make a case without calling in bigger guns, and that shows weakness.

Sir, I have to give a speech. Should I add quote before my introduction or after my introduction?

Recent Tweets

@6minutes Quotes – 8 Benefits and 21 Tips for adding quotes to your #presentation. http://t.co/e9JTIVlU — Charles Greene III Nov 14th, 2012
How to Use Quotes in Your Speech: 8 Benefits and 21 Tips https://t.co/FfzMucyv4p — Lisa F Kosak (@LisaKosak) Nov 20th, 2015
Add Spice & Mystery! | How to Use Quotes in Your Speech: 8 Benefits and 21 Tips https://t.co/QPKrqjTFQl by @6minutes — @AuntieStress Nov 20th, 2015
Do you enjoy using quotes in your speeches? Here are 8 benefits and 21 tips for using quotes: https://t.co/aHMM9XDjii — @UR_Toastmasters Dec 1st, 2015
How to Use Quotes in Your Speech: 8 Benefits and 21 Tips https://t.co/PzM1XM6RSZ by @6minutes — SparklingSpeech (@SparklingSpeech) Dec 2nd, 2015
Some great advice here about how to use quotes effectively in your speeches – you can quote me on that! https://t.co/MJyhbpm6Ln — Kildare Toastmasters (@kildaretoasties) Dec 3rd, 2015
“A quotation…is more powerful than simply repeating yourself in different words.” https://t.co/PB2vyMDDh0 #presentation #publicspeaking — GoReact (@GoReact) Dec 4th, 2015
How to use quotes in your speeches – 8 tips and 21 benefits. https://t.co/kcFvG78YRt #homeschoolspeech — Diane Lockman (@ClassicaScholar) Mar 3rd, 2016
How to Use Quotes in Your Speech: 8 Benefits and 21 Tips https://t.co/ZHVmp7q8Q1 by @6minutes https://t.co/JY1VpBk8pL — @presentguild Jul 6th, 2016
Good article by #Andrew Dlugan @6minutes – 8 benefits and 21 tips on using #quotes in #presentations #DeborahTPatel https://t.co/cPokh5vii6 — @DeborahTPatel Aug 8th, 2018

3 Blog Links

Do you use quotes in your speech? Here’s how: « Presenter News — Sep 24th, 2012

Wise men say | B2B STORYTELLING — Oct 2nd, 2012

How to use quotes in your presentation – 25+ tips from Six Minutes & me | Remote Possibilities — Oct 4th, 2012

Featured Articles

  • Majora Carter (TED, 2006) Energy, Passion, Speaking Rate
  • Hans Rosling (TED, 2006) 6 Techniques to Present Data
  • J.A. Gamache (Toastmasters, 2007) Gestures, Prop, Writing
  • Steve Jobs (Stanford, 2005) Figures of speech, rule of three
  • Al Gore (TED, 2006) Humor, audience interaction
  • Dick Hardt (OSCON, 2005) Lessig Method of Presentation

Books We Recommend

Six Minutes Copyright © 2007-2019 All Rights Reserved.

Read our permissions policy , privacy policy , or disclosure policy .

Comments? Questions? Contact us .

FPPT

12+ Opening Speech Examples for Presentations & Quick Tips

Last updated on October 17th, 2023

Opening Speech Samples for Presentations

These days, most of the audience prefers an informal approach in presentations, but at the same time, it must sound professional. When people prepare for any type of presentation, they often face this dilemma: how to start a presentation? What should be the opening speech? How much time should we take for the introduction part?

The first three minutes of your presentations are crucial to get to your audience with an engaging message and make the overall presentation effective. With the proper opening speech for your presentation, you can hook your audience, win the audience’s attention and get them audience interested in what you have to say. Check out some speech introduction examples to get familiar with this topic. Undoubtedly, if the beginning of your presentation is solid and exciting, the chances of success of your presentation increase. Opening your persuasive speech entirely depends upon your style and choice because when you are giving a presentation, you are required to be yourself and avoid putting artistic elements. So, choose something with which you are entirely comfortable.

If you are looking on how to start a speech then this article can help you to get some ideas. Here is a list of opening speech examples that you can use to prepare your presentations with a persuasive speech that convinces the audience. Find useful phrases and strategies to make your presentation a success:

1. Opening Speech with Greetings

This is the very basic, common and important step in which you need to greet your audience by wish them good morning/afternoon or evening (as per the time of session in which you are giving presentation). How to start a speech? Check out some of the examples below including a simple but effective speech introduction greeting example.

Example of Opening Greetings

Hello, everyone. I’d like, first of all, to thank the organizers of this meeting for inviting me here today.

Another example of opening Greeting speech.

Good morning, ladies and gentlemen. I am honored to have the opportunity to address such a distinguished audience.

2. Open the Speech by Giving Compliment & Show Gratitude towards your Audience

Secondly, just after wishing greeting to your audience give them compliment and choose some words which show that you are delighted to see them there.

Example: 

It’s great to see you all, Thank you for coming here today.

3. Give your introduction: Introduce Yourself

How you introduce yourself during a presentation is important. There are many ways to introduce yourself. Here we will see some examples on how to introduce yourself in a presentation. First of all, give your introduction start from telling your name. You can show some casual attitude by telling your short name or nick name, and then tell the audience more about your background and what you do.

For example, a good way to start introducing yourself could be:

My name is Louis Taylor, friends call me Lee sometimes.

Then introduce yourself professionally and give quite information about what you do and why are here today. For Example:

I am a software engineer by profession and working in ABC Corp. Today, I am here to provide you some exciting information about new technology, which is going to be very beneficial for you in future.

Another example of self-introduction speech:

For those of you who don’t know me already, my name is Louis Taylor, and I’m responsible for the software department at ABC Corp.

Using a self-introduction template and slide in your presentation, you can support your speech while presenting the information about you in the projection. You can also visit self introduction speech examples to find out some examples on how to introduce yourself and download self-introduction templates for PowerPoint & Google Slides.

4. Opening with the Topic of the Speech

Next is the part where you introduce the topic of your presentation or speech. Here are some examples of good opening speech for presentations examples on a specific topic.

What I’d like to present to you today is…

Or here is a simplified example of a good introduction for presentation in which we try to get the audience’s attention over the screen where you are presenting the content of your PowerPoint or Google Slides presentation.

As you can see on the screen, our topic today is…

5. Signpost

Put all your information in front of them and then put your proposal and its related information and key point by which you can implement and utilize that idea effectively. Now let collect these points to make a summary and concise illustration. Here is an example of presentation starting speech that you can use:

“Good afternoon every one, it’s great to see you all here, thank you for coming. My name is Louis Taylor, friends call me Lee sometimes. I am a software engineer by profession and working with ABC Ltd. Today we are here to know about new software so that we can take most of it. Firstly, we will look how it work, next we will discuss where can we use it, then we will learn what are its advantages and finally we will discuss what precautions are required to kept in mind while implementing it.”

6. Creating an Emotional Connection in Your Opening Speech

An effective opening speech is not just about presenting information or stating facts; it’s about forging an emotional connection with your audience. Building this connection can make your presentation more engaging, relatable, and memorable. Here are some strategies to achieve this:

Storytelling: One of the most powerful ways to establish an emotional connection is through storytelling. Sharing a personal anecdote or a relevant story can evoke emotions and draw your audience into your presentation. Make sure your story aligns with the overall theme of your presentation and adds value to your message.

Example of speech opening:

“Good morning, everyone. When I was a little boy, I used to watch my grandfather work tirelessly on his old typewriter. The clacking of the keys was a lullaby that lulled me into dreams of creating something impactful. Today, I am here to talk about the evolution of technology and its effect on communication, from typewriters of old to the smartphones of today.”

Relatability: Find common ground with your audience. This could be based on shared experiences, values, or aspirations. Doing so helps to humanize you, making it easier for your audience to relate to your message.

“Like many of you, I too struggle with maintaining a work-life balance in this fast-paced digital world. Today, I’ll share some strategies I’ve discovered that have significantly improved my quality of life.”

Utilizing Emotions: Use emotions like humor, surprise, curiosity, or inspiration to engage your audience. Different emotions can be used depending on the tone and purpose of your presentation.

“Did you know that the average person spends two weeks of their life waiting for traffic lights to change? That certainly puts our daily commute in a new light, doesn’t it?”

Remember, authenticity is crucial in building an emotional connection. Be yourself, share your experiences, and speak from the heart. This helps to gain your audience’s trust and keeps them engaged throughout your presentation.

7. Harnessing the Power of Visual Aids in Your Opening Speech

Visual aids are a potent tool in any presentation, particularly in your opening speech. They can grab your audience’s attention with a visually appealing cover slide, support your message, and make a lasting impression. Here are some ways you can utilize visual aids in your opening speech.

Images: An image is worth a thousand words, they say, and it’s true. An impactful or relevant image can pique the curiosity of your audience and set the tone for your presentation. Ensure the image aligns with your topic and contributes to your overall message.

“As you can see on the screen, this is an image of a barren desert. It may surprise you to learn that this was once a thriving forest. Today, I’ll be talking about climate change and its irreversible effects.”

Short Videos: A short video can be a great way to engage your audience. This could be a brief clip that illustrates your topic, a short animation, or even a quick introductory video about you or your organization.

Example of a presentation opening statement:

“Before we start, let’s watch this brief video about the incredible journey of a raindrop.”

Infographics and Charts: If you are sharing statistical data or complex information, infographic slides or charts can simplify and clarify your message. They are visually engaging and can help your audience understand and remember the information.

“Take a look at this chart. It shows the exponential increase in cybercrime over the last five years, a topic that we will delve into further today.”

Slides: A well-designed slide can provide a visual structure for your opening speech. It should be clean, easy to read, and should not distract from your speech. Avoid cluttering your slides with too much text or complex graphics.

“According to the infographic on the screen, we can see the three core areas we’ll be focusing on in today’s presentation.”

Remember, the goal of using visual slides is to enhance your message, not overshadow it. They should complement your speech and provide visual interest for your audience. Always test your visual aids beforehand to ensure they work properly during your presentation.

8. Engaging Your Audience with Rhetorical Questions

A rhetorical question is a powerful tool you can use in your opening speech to provoke thought and engage your audience. By posing a question that doesn’t require an answer, you can pique your audience’s interest, make them think, and steer their focus towards your presentation’s key points. Here’s how to use rhetorical questions effectively in your opening speech:

Spark Curiosity: Use a rhetorical question to spark curiosity about your topic. This question should be thought-provoking and relevant to your presentation.

“Have you ever stopped to wonder how much of your life is influenced by social media?”

Highlight Key Issues: A rhetorical question can help highlight the key issues or problems that your presentation aims to address. This will help your audience understand the importance of your topic.

“What would happen if our natural resources were to run out tomorrow?”

Encourage Reflection: Encourage your audience to reflect on their personal experiences or beliefs. This will make your presentation more relatable and engaging.

“How many of us truly understand the value of our mental health?”

Set the Tone: You can also use a rhetorical question to set the tone of your presentation, whether it’s serious, humorous, or contemplative.

“Is there anyone here who doesn’t love pizza?”

Remember, rhetorical questions are meant to stimulate thought, not to put anyone on the spot. Make sure your questions are relevant to your topic and are appropriate for your audience. With the right questions, you can grab your audience’s attention, keep them engaged, and guide their thinking throughout your presentation.

9. Leveraging Statistical Data in Your Opening Speech

Using statistical data in your opening speech is a powerful way to capture the audience’s attention and lend credibility to your message. Surprising or impactful statistics related to your presentation’s topic can instantly make your audience sit up and take notice. Here’s how you can incorporate statistical data effectively in your opening speech:

Relevant and Interesting Data: Choose statistics that are directly relevant to your topic and are likely to pique your audience’s interest. This data should enhance your message and provide valuable context for your presentation.

“Do you know that according to the World Health Organization, depression is the leading cause of disability worldwide, affecting over 264 million people?”

Simplify Complex Data: If you’re presenting complex or dense data, make sure to simplify it for your audience. Use percentages, comparisons, or visual aids like infographics or charts to make the data easily understandable.

“Look at this chart. It represents the staggering 80% increase in cybercrime incidents over the past five years.”

Credible Sources: Always ensure your data comes from credible and reputable sources. This not only adds legitimacy to your presentation, but it also boosts your credibility as a speaker.

“According to a recent study published in the Journal of Environmental Science, air pollution contributes to 1 in 8 deaths worldwide.”

Shocking or Surprising Data: If you have statistics that are surprising or counter-intuitive, they can be an excellent way to grab your audience’s attention and spark curiosity about your presentation.

“Can you believe that, according to the United Nations, we waste approximately 1.3 billion tons of food every year, while one in nine people worldwide go hungry?”

Using statistical data in your opening speech can help to highlight the significance of your topic, draw your audience in, and lay a solid foundation for the rest of your presentation. Remember to present your data in a clear, accessible way, and always cite your sources to maintain credibility.

10. Creating a Powerful Hook with Anecdotes and Quotations

Anecdotes and quotations can be a powerful tool in your opening speech, serving as hooks that draw your audience into your presentation. They can provide a human element to your topic, connect with your audience on an emotional level, and add depth to your message. Here’s how you can effectively incorporate anecdotes and quotations in your opening speech:

Relevant Anecdotes: Sharing a relevant anecdote, whether personal or related to your topic, can make your presentation more relatable and engaging. Your anecdote should be brief, interesting, and serve to illustrate a point related to your topic.

“When I was a teenager, my family’s home was destroyed by a fire. That experience ignited in me a passion for safety measures and awareness, which brings us to today’s topic: fire safety in residential areas.”

Inspiring Quotations: A well-chosen quote can add depth and perspective to your topic. It can inspire, provoke thought, or set the tone for your presentation. Presenting it with a visually appealing quote slide increases the chances to make a lasting impression. Make sure the quote is relevant to your topic and from a credible source.

“Albert Einstein once said, ‘The world as we have created it is a process of our thinking. It cannot be changed without changing our thinking.’ This leads us into our discussion today on the importance of mindset in personal development.”

Humorous Anecdotes or Quotations: Depending on the formality of the setting and the topic of your presentation, a funny anecdote or quote can help to relax the audience, making them more receptive to your message.

“Mark Twain once said, ‘I didn’t have time to write a short letter, so I wrote a long one instead.’ As a fellow writer, I can relate to this sentiment, which brings us to our topic today: the art of concise writing.”

Remember, your anecdote or quote should serve to enhance your message, not distract from it. It should be interesting, relevant, and appropriately timed. With the right anecdote or quote, you can create a powerful hook that engages your audience from the outset.

11. Integrating Storytelling in your Opening Speech

Storytelling is a compelling method to make your opening speech memorable and engaging. A well-told story can create a strong emotional connection with your audience, making your presentation more impactful. Here’s how to effectively weave storytelling into your opening speech:

Choosing the Right Story: The story you tell should be relevant to your topic and capable of illustrating the point you’re trying to make. It could be a personal experience, a case study, or a historical event.

“Years ago, I worked on a project that, at the outset, seemed destined for success. But due to a lack of clear communication within the team, the project failed. Today, we will be discussing the importance of effective communication within teams.”

Creating Suspense: Build suspense in your story to hold your audience’s attention. You can do this by posing a problem or a conflict at the beginning of your story, which gets resolved by the end of your presentation.

“One day, as I was walking through a remote village in Africa, I came across a scene that profoundly changed my perspective. But before I reveal what it was, let’s discuss the issue of clean drinking water in underdeveloped countries.”

Showing, Not Telling: Make your story more vivid and engaging by showing, not telling. Use descriptive language and paint a picture with your words to make your audience feel like they’re part of the story.

“As the sun rose over the bustling city of Tokyo, I found myself in a small sushi shop tucked away in a quiet alley, experiencing what would become a pivotal moment in my culinary journey.”

Relatable Characters: If your story involves characters, make them relatable. Your audience should be able to see themselves in your characters, or at least understand their motivations and challenges.

“Meet Sarah, a single mother of two, working two jobs just to make ends meet. Her struggle is the reason we’re here today, to discuss the issue of minimum wage in our country.”

Storytelling is a powerful tool that can bring your presentation to life. A well-told story can captivate your audience, making your message more memorable and impactful. Be sure to select a story that aligns with your overall message and is appropriate for your audience.

12. Incorporating Interactive Elements in Your Opening Speech

Involving your audience from the get-go can make your presentation more engaging and memorable. By integrating interactive elements into your opening speech, you can foster a sense of participation and connection among your listeners. Here’s how you can do it:

Audience Polling: Modern presentation software often includes real-time polling features. You can ask your audience a question related to your topic and display the results instantly.

“To start, I’d like to ask you all a question. (Show poll on screen) How many of you think that Artificial Intelligence will significantly change our lives in the next ten years?”

Questions for Thought: Pose a thought-provoking question to your audience at the beginning of your speech. It can stimulate curiosity and get your listeners thinking about your topic.

“Before we delve into today’s topic, I want you to ponder this: what would you do if you had only 24 hours left to live? Keep that in mind as we discuss the importance of time management.”

Physical Engagement: Depending on the formality and size of your audience, you can incorporate physical engagement. This can range from a simple show of hands to engaging activities.

“By a show of hands, how many of you have ever felt overwhelmed by the amount of information available on the internet? That’s what we’ll be discussing today: information overload in the digital age.”

Interactive Quizzes: Quizzes can be a fun and interactive way to engage your audience and test their knowledge on your topic. It can also serve as a hook to introduce your topic. You can use a free Quiz PowerPoint template to ease the job of creating a quiz for your presentation.

“I have a quick quiz for you all (show quiz on screen). Let’s see who can guess the most common fear among adults. The answer will lead us into our topic of discussion today: overcoming fear.”

Remember, the goal of incorporating interactive elements is to engage your audience, so it should be relevant and add value to your presentation. Tailor your interactive elements to suit the needs and preferences of your audience, and you’ll have a winning opening speech.

What are the Objectives of Preparing a Good Introduction and Opening Speech?

As we mentioned earlier, the first minutes of your presentation are crucial to hook the audience and let them pay attention to the message you want to convey. This will depend on the type of presentation (if it is persuasive presentation, informative presentation or a presentation for entertaining the audience), but in general terms, when presenting we need to:

  • Capture the audience’s attention
  • Present information, opinions, ideas to the audience.
  • Present important details about a specific topic.
  • Sell an idea.
  • Make the information memorable so it can persist over the time.
  • Get your audience to take action, a Call to Action. E.g. purchase a product, enroll to something, fundraise, etc.

Real-Life Examples of Effective Opening Speeches

Barack Obama started his speech in the White House Correspondents’ Dinner saying: “You can’t say it, but you know it’s true.”

In same cases, humour can be a great companion for your speech. If you can use humour in a positive way, then getting a laugh in the first seconds of a presentation can get your audience hooked. It is a great way to open your speech.

Final Thoughts

Try to make habit of starting your presentation this way, it will sound great. You may come across several more opening speech examples for presentation but, once you implement this you yourself will realize that this is the best one. Alternatively you can learn more on quotes for presentations & speech topics  to use during your presentation in PowerPoint, learn how to close your presentation , or find other relevant speech introduction greeting examples.

49 comments on “ 12+ Opening Speech Examples for Presentations & Quick Tips ”

thank you very much

Hi Kavishki, we hope the article was useful for you. Will be great to learn more about how you have used the speech examples. If you need more speech ideas, I’d recommend you free Persuasive Speech topics .

hi,good morning all of you.i’m shadi.now i’m going to do a panel discussion.we want some informations from you we believe all will support us.

Hi Kavishki, good morning. Can please provide more information about the Panel Discussion needs and if it involves a PowerPoint presentation? We’d be happy to be of help!

This was very useful to me! But i need more speech ideas!

Being a content person myself,i’ve gotta be honest.Now this was assisting,you bet…great stuffow.

Thank you so much. It’s very helpful. Keep it up.. Good luck <3

plesae i would like u my pleasure to help me with some opening celebration word,s specially greeting to the audience

It would be appreciable if you share more speech about this.thank you.

thanks a lot for dis.. really its very helpful

I do thank you for the tips you provided me with on how to make speeches/presentations.

a very gud thanks for such tips

Thank you for the information. Very good tips.

thanks you for the great ideas. this can help me to improve my presentation skill.

this information very nice to me.i get many new thing after i read this article.this information can help me to make a good presentation later.thank you.

I think this article is very useful for me to make presentations. Thank.

I think it is true.Keep it up.

What a good infomation.It very useful thank u

Thank you for the information. Its very helpful

It is helpful for my presentations.

i hope someone could teach me present more effectively. i would appreciate it

Thank you for the information.i can learn about the article/speech with simple and easy to understand..

this is useful tips

Good tips on how to start a presentation.

Thankyou for this. This really helped me a lot.

This tips makes me more confident . Thank you very much and break a leg guys !

Hi, I’m Gayathiri. I would like to thank you for giving such a helpful tips. I will defenitely use this tips in my speech/presentation.So, I hope my friends also use this tips for their presentation.

it was a good tip for us newbie on how to make a speech without any worries.

Thank you for your note and tip… It can change me to be a good student..

This article really helped me a lot for preparing a presentation.

this all very useful tips…can boost my confident during the presentation.thank you so much….

it’s very use helpful..thank you!

I need to view ths document

This was a good read. Thank you for the information.

Thank you for the information about the introduction during pesentation.Truely,i really need to study lot about how to start my presentation so that the audience are interesting to hear what i want to talk about and do not feel bored.

it’s is very usefull article that can use as our revision in upcoming for the next presentation.Thank you..

Thank you miss because of this article, it can help me on my next presentation.

thank you for this article,it’s useful to improve my presentation tasks.

this article has many tips for prepare to our presentation.thank you for sharing this article.

Thanks for the useful information. Can I ask how can I improve my self-confidence so as not to be embarrassed when presenting? Any idea? Thank you.

thank you..i’ll try to use those information for my presentation so i’ll be the best presenter in my class

this information very nice and useful to me.i get many new thing and tips after i read this article.this information can help me to make a good and better presentation later.thank you for useful information and meaningful for me

first of all, thank you for the help. there are a lot of great idea for me to use for my next presentation

Hi please i would like you to help me write an introduction for a speech about myself to my teacher

It’s help my presentation

Thank you so so much I will tell this at the UNIVERSITY presentation

please i really love your speech but can you please throw more light on the introduction

Hi every body I have entretien to USA Ambassi.

I need good presentation.

thank you so much for such a beneficial tips.

Leave a Comment Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment.

Sign up to our newsletter

We will send you our curated collections to your email weekly. No spam, promise!

opening speech quotes

  • Delivery Techniques →

15 Funny Quotes to Start a Speech With a Bang

opening speech quotes

Are you struggling to find that perfect line to start your speech off right?

Whether you are delivering a speech for work, school, or a special occasion, opening with a funny quote can help you captivate your audience and get your point across.

So, if you’re looking for a little inspiration, here are 15 funny quotes to kick off your speech with a bang:

Quick Definition

There are countless funny quotes that can be used to begin a speech. Consider using an inspirational quote from a famous person, or one that is humorous and light-hearted that will draw in your audience.

Why Use a Funny Quote to Start a Speech?

When it comes to starting a speech, why not open with some laughter?

A funny quote can help grab the attention of an audience as well as ease any anxious energy in the room.

Not only is this approach amusing, but it also demonstrates confidence and puts your audience at ease.

Plus, you'll be setting a light-hearted tone for the remainder of your remarks, signaling to your audience that this won't just be a mundane affair. However, it’s important to remember that opening with humor isn’t always suitable.

Some presentations may call for more sobriety and when in doubt, skip the joke and stick to something that will get people’s ears perked up without offending anybody in the process.

Depending on the dynamic of the group and the content you’re delivering, going too far could backfire and ruin your credibility before you even get into your key points. So consider carefully whether opening with a funny quote is right for the occasion - and make sure it's genuinely witty or entertaining !

If used correctly, a humorous quote can spark interest from your audience and provide them with the incentive to stay focused until the end of your speech . Now that we've discussed why using a funny quote to start a speech can be beneficial, let's delve into how to gain attention from the audience when utilizing this approach in our next section.

Main Points to Remember

Starting a speech with a funny quote can help grab the audience's attention and ease any anxious energy in the room. It also signals to your audience that it won't be a mundane affair.

However, this approach isn't always suitable and should be used cautiously. If done correctly, a humorous quote can spark interest in your audience and provide them with the incentive to stay focused until the end of your speech.

funny quotes to start a speech

Gaining Attention From the Audience

Getting attention from the audience is key when starting a presentation or speech. Depending on the size and type of audience, engaging the crowd and warming them up to what you have to say can be an effective way of ensuring they are interested and attentive. Adding humor to your start can be one way to get the audience’s attention right away. This can range from a joke , a lighthearted anecdote, or even quoting someone in the room (with their permission).

By adding a little bit of levity, you can break up the formal atmosphere that may exist in your audience. On the other hand, breaking the ice may backfire if delivered incorrectly - it can be juvenile or off-putting in certain contexts. Tying into something familiar or relevant in the room is another way to gain attention. This could be referring to a news story or current event that is related to your topic.

Finding something relatable for your audience will help create initial interest and give them a reason to listen . However, relying too heavily on this approach may lead to superficial interactions with topics that are not fully fleshed out. The next step in discussing any type of speech is adding impact to ensure your remarks have staying power with your listener.

Adding Impact to the Speech

Beginning a speech with an attention-grabbing quote can set the tone for an enjoyable and engaging delivery.

Quotes that are humorous or that playfully challenge conventional wisdom can help stimulate interest and discussion amongst your audience.

Lighthearted jokes or anecdotes can pique curiosity and show off your wit, while thought-provoking philosophies can provide food for thought. The only catch: Make sure to use a quote that fits the subject matter of your speech! Humorous quotes often make for some of the best kick-off points for a speech.

A funny joke or quip may lighten up the atmosphere and provide an infusing dose of energy to your audience. That said, it’s important to strike a balance; using humor to launch a serious presentation risks minimizing its importance or distracting from its main points—plus, it may detract from what you’re actually trying to say!

In most cases, it may be best to avoid humor altogether in order to ensure your message is seen as credible and valuable by the audience. On the other hand, if you’re giving an upbeat talk on a positive topic such as creative problem-solving, making insightful observations through edgy commentary may go down well with listeners!

Humorous quotes carefully chosen to complement the topic of your speech can prove entertaining while also adding depth and visual impact. In any case, try not to throw too many jokes into one presentation—oversaturation is also not recommended when it comes working humour into a speech. Moving on from discussing the impact of adding quotes to your speech, let us now look at different types of quotes which can be used to start a speech with a bang!

Types of Funny Quotes to Start a Speech

When crafting a discussion or speech, introducing the topic with a humorous quote can lighten up the atmosphere and set a positive tone.

But not all quotes are created equal, so depending on the situation it may be beneficial to choose an appropriate quote. There is an argument that using a quote from a famous person may have more impact to start off the discussion; however, there are also points to be made for using commonly known sayings or tongue-in-cheek quips. Many people believe that a quote from a distinguished person—whether historical figures, politicians, scientists, and so forth—can immediately draw attention and establish credibility.

It adds weight to the speaker’s ideas if they can reference legends who have come before them. However, it can backfire if the audience cannot understand or relate to whom the speaker is quoting, as well as their context.

Moreover, some might find certain quotes from prominent people cringe-worthy or too outdated for contemporary use. On the other hand, witty one-liners and popular phrases may prove to be more effective in connecting with an audience .

Since many of these jokes have been widely circulated over time, they are usually understood by all listeners. Certain regional or specialized acts require an audience familiar with particular terms; in this case you can use local sayings or inside jokes as long as you make sure it’s widely understood by everybody in the room.

Also, this type of humor is often seen as being more organic rather than forced because it sticks close to common knowledge. Finally, catered humor can elevate your performance tenfold when you take into account your particular audience’s interests and preferences.

If you’re having trouble deciding whether to use a famous person's quote or commonplace joke, consider asking yourself which will make your specific crowd laugh the most? That could be the deciding factor before beginning your speech with a bang. Turning now to quotes from famous people: successful speakers incorporate examples from historically esteemed individuals into their speeches to strike a chord with their crowd while also demonstrating intelligence and depth of knowledge.

Quotes From Famous People

Quotes from famous people can be a great way to start a speech. Not only are these quotes entertaining, but they can help create a bond between the speaker and the audience by referring to someone everyone knows and admires.

As a bonus, even raising the possibility of being taken seriously through association makes for an attention grabbing opening. On the other hand, with this comes the danger of misquoting or taking a famous quote out of context. Even if meant innocently, this could easily cause offense and cast doubt on the credibility of what follows afterwards in the speech. The use of quotes from famous people should then be treated with care and given due consideration before being used in a speech. For inspiration, here are 15 funny quotes from famous people that can kickstart any speech with a bang:

Quotes From Historical Figures

Quotes from historical figures have a lot of potential when it comes to beginning a speech.

Such inspiring words can provide insight about particular topics and become sources of motivation for listeners. Historical quotes can be used to set a serious tone or include some humor in an otherwise dry topic. However, depending on the situation, it is important to consider both sides of the argument when selecting these kinds of quotes. On the one hand, a quote from a historic leader can provide inspiration for the audience and bring attention to the importance of certain ideas.

Being a source of uplifting words, memorable lines taken from famous speeches can be especially effective in emotionally charged situations such as times of struggle or moments of hope. By quoting influential figures and making use of movements that changed lives, speakers can make their conversations meaningful and powerful. On the other hand, while quotations from history offer many benefits, they might fail to promote laughter or lightness at the start of a presentation. This could lead to monotonous public speaking engagements that could put people off instead of captivating their attention.

Furthermore, in some cases, controversial statements made by certain figures could have negative implications in an audience. Therefore, choosing an appropriate quote should involve careful selection and consideration before broadcasting it to an audience. In any case, having an impressive and catchy introduction with powerful words from inspiring leaders gives you an opportunity to capture your listeners’ imagination and successfully draw their attention towards your message.

Now that we discussed the pros and cons of using quotes from historical figures, let us turn our attention to finding relevant funny quotes which could be used to produce different results such as getting audiences laughing and energizing your speech right away.

Finding Relevant Funny Quotes

Finding relevant funny quotes to kick off a speech can be a great way to warm up the crowd and energize your audience.

When choosing a quote for this purpose, it's important to make sure that the content of the quote is both relatable and relevant to the message or topic of your speech . However, you want to ensure that it’s not something your audience has heard before or too risky that it could come across as offensive. Another factor when selecting a quote is how well known the author of the quote is. For example, quoting Will Rogers or Mark Twain will generally be better received than someone who may not have widespread recognition.

Generally, if you select a lesser-known author you should include some background information about them so people understand the context of their humour. Finally, another factor in finding good quotes for a speech is the relevance of the message within the quote itself. Selecting something broad can work but if possible it’s best to find something more tailored to your desired outcome.

Some good ways to research funny quotes are online collections from authors, comedians, or other sources that have come from people that specialize in creating humourous content. Finding relevant funny quotes can be challenging but can also be an effective way to grab an audiences attention and set the tone for an entertaining speech.

Before deciding on one though, it’s important to consider all factors such as the author, relevancy and risk-level associated with the content of what’s being said. With these pointers in mind, you can begin your search to figure out which humorous quote will give your speech the excellent start it deserves! With that process complete, now it’s time to move onto analyzing the situation and making sure each element lines up accordingly.

Analyzing the Situation

When choosing a funny quote to open a speech, it is important to carefully assess the situation.

Considering your audience and the occasion are two key elements to take into account for any successful speech. Joking around in a professional setting may be off-putting to some whereas in more light-hearted environments, it may go over well.

For example, while delivering a wedding toast at a lavish event it may be more appropriate to opt for a slapstick joke than if you’re talking at an academic conference. To ensure that your chosen quote won’t offend anyone or derail the tone of the event, consider searching for a mild joke that may still make people laugh without being too out of place. Likewise, researching jokes relevant to the topics discussed will make sure that you earn more laughter and appreciation from your audience. Overall, picking an appropriate funny quote is not always easy but analyzing the situation is an essential step for having a successful presentation. With thorough research and consideration of your audience and occasion, you can select a quote that will start your speech off with a bang. Now that you’ve gained insight into how to analyze the situation when selecting funny quotes, let’s move on to some tips and tricks for using them effectively when delivering your speech.

Tips and Tricks While Using Funny Quotes

Using funny quotes to begin a speech can be an effective way to grab the audience's attention. However, there are certain tips and tricks speakers need to remember if they wish to make the best of their funny quote. One of these tips is to choose the right quote. It’s important to pick one that is actually humorous and will be able to make your audience laugh or smile. Choose a quote that is relevant and contemporary – one that your audience will immediately relate and understand. In addition, it's also important to know how far your funny quote should go. Don’t choose a quote that may be considered offensive to any particular group of people. Make sure you find one that is lighthearted instead of overly edgy or inappropriate. When delivering your funny quote, don’t forget about using body language and facial expressions. A funny joke or punch line would sound flat without enough expression on the speaker’s face or in their delivery.

Try and exaggerate for comedic effect by varying the rate you say each word or maybe even add exaggerated hand gestures with each phrase for extra emphasis. These tips and tricks for using funny quotes can help speakers start their speech with a bang and make sure their humor gets across effectively to their audience - but these are not all of the rules when it comes to using humor while speaking!

The next section of this article will discuss our conclusion and final thoughts on how best to use funny quotes in speeches .

Conclusion and Final Thoughts

The conclusion of this article is that adding some humor to your speech can be a great way to engage and connect with your audience.

Using a few carefully chosen funny quotes can be the perfect way to open up a speech and get your audience's attention. Not only will it make them smile, it will also help break the ice, making it easier for you to warm up to speaking in front of an audience. There are pros and cons when deciding whether or not you should use humor in your speech.

On one hand, jokes and humorous quotes can be effective at engaging the audience , getting everyone laughing which can help create a relaxed atmosphere.

However, one must exercise caution as jokes that involve stereotypes or offensive topics might have unintended consequences. If a joke falls flat or people find the punchline inappropriate, then more than likely your presentation will not go as planned. So before using humor in your speech, make sure that it's appropriate and won't be taken the wrong way by your audience. Ultimately, if used correctly and tastefully, funny quotes can help increase engagement in any given speech.

Whether you're giving an inspirational talk or simply delivering facts to an audience, sprinkling in humor is always a nice touch that can be used to hit home a point or two while keeping the crowd entertained at the same time.

Here are 15 Funny Quote You Can Use to Start a Speech

  • Whoever said nothing is impossible is a liar. I’ve been doing nothing for years.
  • I really lack the words to compliment myself today.
  • Don’t underestimate me, that’s my mother’s job.
  • I am a nobody, nobody is perfect, therefore I am perfect.
  • At the very start, let me say that we both have something in common. You don’t know what I’m going to say… and neither do I.
  • You are not completely useless you can always serve as a bad example.
  • It’s good to learn from other’s mistakes, I wish people learn something from me.
  • The human brain starts working the moment you are born and never stops until you stand up to speak in public.
  • I’ve only been wrong once, and that’s when I thought I was wrong.
  • Regular naps prevent old age, especially if you take them while driving.
  • Sorry, I’m late. I got here as soon as I felt like it.
  • You know God gave us brain to work out our problems. However we used it to create more!
  • Sometimes the best helping hand you can give is a good, firm push.
  • Whatever you do always give 100 %. Unless you are donating blood.
  • Don’t be afraid to talk to yourself. It’s the only way you can be sure somebody’s listening.

How do I determine which funny quotes to use in my speech?

When determining which funny quotes to use in your speech, it is important to consider the audience. Ask yourself if the quote is appropriate for the particular environment and crowd.

Additionally, you should consider the topics of your speech and choose quotes that are relevant to them. Furthermore, when selecting quotes make sure that they are short, concise and witty. You want the audience to get the joke so having simple delivery with a punchline helps with this.

Lastly, remember to have fun with it! Your sense of humor will help you pick out the best funny quote for your speech.

What are the best ways to structure a speech using funny quotes?

The best way to structure a speech using funny quotes is by mixing a few humorous statements in throughout the entirety of your presentation.

Begin with a funny opener quote to get everyone laughing, but don’t rely solely on jokes to carry your speech. Instead, use humor to set the tone and provide an entertaining break between informative points throughout your presentation.

It’s important not to overuse humor as too many jokes within a speech can take away from the main point of your presentation and also start to feel stale after a while.

Additionally, it’s good to check quotes you plan on using for accuracy and make sure that they fit the context of your message. If done well, humorous quotes can be great tools for engaging an audience in a stimulating way.

How can I use funny quotes to grab the attention of the audience?

Using funny quotes to grab the audience’s attention is a great way to start off your speech. Not only will it break the ice and get everyone laughing, it can also serve to introduce an important topic that you plan to discuss in your speech.

If the quote is clever and relevant to your subject matter, it can open up a meaningful dialogue about the main points of your speech and show your audience that you understand their perspective. To be effective, it’s important to pick out one or two funny quotes from your chosen source and use them strategically throughout the course of your speech. Avoid quoting too many jokes as this can lose its impact quickly.

Also make sure that any humorous words or phrases you use accurately reflect the tone and mood of the event so you don’t come across as overly jokey or inappropriate. 

Finally, it’s good practice to acknowledge the original author or source of any funny quotes you use; this adds gravitas and ensures that proper credits are given where due.

Frantically Speaking

50 Speech Closing Lines (& How to Create Your Own) | The Ultimate Guide

Hrideep barot.

  • Public Speaking , Speech Writing

speech closing lines

While speech openings are definitely one of the most important components of a speech, something that is equally as important is the way you conclude your speech.

There are few worse ways to end your speech than with a terse ‘thank you’–no elaboration or addition whatsoever.

Speech endings are just as crucial to the success of your speech as speech openings, and you must spend just as much time picking the perfect ending as you do to determine your best possible speech opening.

The words you speak at the beginning and end of your speech are words that your audience will pay the most attention to, and remember longer than any other part of your speech.

Speech endings can put even the most experienced speaker in flux, and increase their anxiousness manifold as they sit there attempting to figure out the perfect way to end your speech.

If you’re someone who’s in flux about your speech ending too, don’t worry. We’ve got some amazing ways to conclude your speech with a bang!

1. Circling Back To The Beginning

The idea behind circling back to the beginning of your speech is to reinforce the idea of your speech being a complete whole. By circling back to the beginning and connecting it to your ending, you let the audience understand that the idea of your speech is complete & standalone.

Circling back to the beginning of your speech also acts as an excellent way of reinforcing the central idea of your speech in the audience’s mind, and makes it more likely that they will remember it after the speech ends.

Need more inspiration for speech opening lines? Check out our article on 15 Powerful Speech Opening Lines & Tips To Create Your Own.

How To Circle Back To The Beginning

The easiest way to do this is to set up your beginning for the conclusion of your speech. That is, if you’re saying something like, say, a story or joke in the beginning, then you can leave your audience in a cliffhanger until the ending arrives.

Another great way to circle back to the beginning is by simply restating something you said at the start. The added knowledge from attending the rest of your speech will help the audience see this piece of information in a new–and better–light.

1. Will Stephen

Ending Line: “I’d like you to think about what you heard in the beginning, and I want you to think about what you hear now. Because it was nothing & it’s still nothing.”

2. Canwen Xu

Speech Ending: My name is Canwen, my favorite color is purple and I play the piano but not so much the violin…

Think of a memorable moment from your life, and chances are you’ll realize that it involved a feeling of happiness–something that we can associate with smiling or laughter. And what better way to generate laughter than by incorporating the age-old strategy of good humor.

The happy and lighthearted feeling you associate with good memories is the kind of emotional reaction you want to create in your audience too. That’s what will make your speech stick in their memory.

Done incorrectly, humor can be a disaster. Done right, however, it can entirely transform a speech.

Humor doesn’t only mean slapstick comedy (although there’s nothing wrong with slapstick, either). Humor can come in many forms, including puns, jokes, a funny story…the list is endless.

How To Incorporate Humor In Your Speech Ending

The simplest way to incorporate humor into your speech ending is by telling a plain old joke–something that’s relevant to your topic, of course.

You can also tell them a short, funny anecdote–may be an unexpected conclusion to a story you set up in the beginning.

Another way would be by employing the power of repetition. You can do this by associating something funny with a word, and then repeating the word throughout your speech. During the end, simply say the word or phrase one last time, and it’s likely you’ll leave off your audience with a good chuckle.

1. Woody Roseland

Ending Line: “Why are balloons so expensive? Inflation.”

2. Andras Arato

Ending Line: “There are three rules to becoming famous. Unfortunately, nobody knows what they are.”

3. Hasan Minhaj

Ending Line: “And you want to know the scariest part? Pretty soon every country on the earth is going to have its own TLC show.”

4. Sophie Scott

Speech Ending: In other words, when it comes to laughter, you and me baby, ain’t nothing but mammals.

5. Tim Urban

Speech Ending: We need to stay away from the Instant Gratification Monkey. That’s a job for all of us. And because there’s not that many boxes on there. It’s a job that should probably start today. Well, maybe not today, but, you know, sometime soon.

6. Hasan Minhaj

Speech Ending: Showing my legs on TV is probably the scariest thing I’ve ever done. And keep in mind last week I went after the Prince of Saudi Arabia.

3. Question

The idea behind posing a question at the end of your speech is to get the wheels in your audience’s minds turning and to get them thinking of your speech long after it has ended. A question, if posed correctly, will make your audience re-think about crucial aspects of your speech, and is a great way to prompt discussion after your speech has ended.

How To Add Questions To Your Speech Ending

The best type of questions to add to your speech ending is rhetorical questions. That’s because, unlike a literal question, a rhetorical question will get the audience thinking and make them delve deeper into the topic at hand.

Make sure your question is central to the idea of your speech, and not something frivolous or extra. After all, the point of a question is to reinforce the central idea of your topic.

1. Lexie Alford

Speech Ending: Ask yourself: How uncomfortable are you willing to become in order to reach your fullest potential?

2. Apollo Robbins

Speech Ending: If you could control somebody’s attention, what would you do with it?

Quotes are concise, catchy phrases or sentences that are generally easy to remember and repeat.

Quotes are an age-old way to start–and conclude–a speech. And for good reason.

Quotes can reinforce your own ideas by providing a second voice to back them up. They can also provoke an audience’s mind & get them thinking. So, if you add your quote to the end of your speech, the audience will most likely be thinking about it for long after you have finished speaking.

How To Use Quotes In Your Speech Ending

While adding quotes to your speech ending, make sure that it’s relevant to your topic. Preferably, you want to pick a quote that summarizes your entire idea in a concise & memorable manner.

Make sure that your quote isn’t too long or complicated. Your audience should be able to repeat it as well as feel its impact themselves. They shouldn’t be puzzling over the semantics of your quote, but its intended meaning.

1. Edouard Jacqmin

Speech Ending: “Life is either a daring adventure or nothing at all.”

2. Chris Crowe

Speech Ending: “It’s more certain than death and taxes.”

3. Olivia Remes

Speech Ending: I’d like to leave you with a quote by Martin Luther King: “You don’ have to see the whole staircase. Just take the first step.”

4. Tomislav Perko

Speech Ending: Like that famous quote says, “In twenty years from now on, you’ll be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the things you did do.

5. Diana Nyad

Speech Ending: To paraphrase the poet, Mary Oliver, she says, “So, what is it? What is it you’re doing with this one wild and precious life of yours?”

5. Piece Of Advice

The point of giving a piece of advice at the end of your speech is not to pull your audience down or to make them feel bad/inferior about themselves. Rather, the advice is added to motivate your audience to take steps to do something–something related to the topic at hand.

The key point to remember is that your advice is included to help your audience, not to discourage them.

How To Add Piece Of Advice To Your Speech Ending

To truly make your audience follow the advice you’re sharing, you must make sure it resonates with them. To do so, you need to inject emotions into your advice, and to present it in such a manner that your audience’s emotions are aroused when they hear it.

Your advice shouldn’t be something extra-complicated or seemingly impossible to achieve. This will act as a counter-agent. Remember that you want your audience to follow your advice, not to chuck it away as something impossible.

Our article, 15 Powerful Speech Ending Lines And Tips To Create Your Own , is another great repository for some inspiration.

1. Ricardo Lieuw On

Speech Ending: “Learn something new, or a new way of approaching something old because there are a few skills are valuable as the art of learning.”

2. Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic

Speech Ending: “If we want to improve the competence level of our leaders, then we should first improve our own competence for judging and selecting leaders.”

3. Sharique Samsudheen

Speech Ending: “Some people love money, some people hate money, some people crave money, some people even kill for money. But what they miss is they just need to learn how to manage money well, and that will give them financial freedom.”

4. Kate Simonds

Speech Ending: Teens, you need to believe in your voices and adults, you need to listen.

5. Melissa Butler

Speech Ending: When you go home today, see yourself in the mirror, see all of you, look at all your greatness that you embody, accept it, love it and finally, when you leave the house tomorrow, try to extend that same love and acceptance to someone who doesn’t look like you.

6. Iskra Lawrence

Speech Ending: Speak to your body in a loving way. It’s the only one you got, it’s your home, and it deserves your respect. If you see anyone tearing themselves down, build them back up And watch your life positively grow when you give up the pursuit of perfection.

6. Contemplative Remark

As the name itself suggests, contemplative remarks are intended to make your audience contemplate or mull over something. The ‘something’ in question should be the idea central to your speech, or a key takeaway that you want them to return home with.

The idea is to get your audience thinking and to keep them thinking for a long, long time.

How To Add A Contemplative Remark To Your Speech Ending

To add a contemplative remark to your speech ending, you first need to figure out your key takeaway or main theme. Then, you want to arrange that as a question, and propose it to your audience at the end of your speech.

Remember that your question shouldn’t be something too wordy or complicated to understand. As with the quotes, you don’t want your audience stuck on the semantics. Rather, you want them to focus on the matter at hand.

1. Lisa Penney

Speech Ending: “So I invite you to pay more attention to your thoughts & consider the legacy you leave behind.”

2. Grant Sanderson

Speech Ending: “Some of the most useful math that you can find or teach has its origin in someone who was just looking for a good story.”

3. Greta Thunberg

Speech Ending: “We will not let you get away with this. Right here, right now is where we draw the line. The world is waking up & change is coming whether you like it or not.”

4. Bill Eckstrom

Speech Ending: Now, think about this: it’s not the complexity-triggering individuals or events you should fear the most, but it’s your own willingness to accept or seek discomfort that will dictate the growth of not just you, but our entire world.

5. Robert Hoge

Speech Ending: Choose to accept your face, choose to appreciate your face, don’t look away from the mirror so quickly; understand all the love, and the life, and the pain that is the part of your face, that is the art of your face. Tomorrow when you wake up, what will your choice be?

7. Personal Anecdote

Personal anecdotes, as the name suggests, are anecdotes that are personal to the speaker or instances from their life. Personal anecdotes are a great way to incorporate the magical powers of storytelling in your speech, as well as to make a personal connection with the audience. Using personal anecdotes, you can hit two birds with one stone!

How To Add Personal Anecdotes To Your Speech Ending

To add personal anecdotes to your speech ending, you need to filter through your life experiences to find out ones that directly relate to your topic at hand. You don’t want to include an anecdote, no matter how compelling it is, if it doesn’t relate to your topic.

Remember to not keep your anecdote too long. Your audience will most likely lose their attention if you do so.

1. Sheila Humphries

Speech Ending: “Why do you go work for these people?” My answer to them was, “If I could help one child make it in this world, it’ll be worth it all.”

8. Call To Action

A call-to-action is one of the absolute best ways to conclude a speech with a bang. A well-written speech should aim to alter the audience’s mind or belief system in some way and to make them take an action in that direction. One crucial way to assure your audience does this is by using a call to action.

How To Add A Call To Action To Your Speech Ending

A call to action comes right before the ending of your speech to provide your audience with a clear idea or set of instructions about what they’re supposed to do after your talk ends.

A call to action should provide a roadmap to the audience for their future steps, and to outline clearly what those future steps are going to be.

1. Armin Hamrah

Speech Ending: “So tonight, after you finish your Math homework & before you lay your head down on that fluffy pillow, bring a piece of paper and pen by your bedside…”

2. Graham Shaw

Speech Ending: “So I invite you to get your drawings out there & spread the word that when we draw, we remember more!”

3. Andy Puddicombe

Speech Ending: You don’t have to burn any incense, and you definitely don’t have to sit on the floor. All you need to do is to take out 10 minutes out a day to step back, familiarize yourself with the present moment so that you get to experience a greater sense of focus, calm, and clarity in your life.

4. Amy Cuddy

Speech Ending: Before you go into the next stressful evaluative situation, for two minutes, try doing this in the elevator…

5. Jia Jiang

Speech Ending: When you are facing the next obstacle or the next failure, consider the possibilities. Don’t run! If you just embrace them, they might become your gifts as well.

9. Motivational Remark

As the name clearly explains, a motivational remark motivates your audience to carry out a plan of action. It ruffles the audience’s mind and emotions and has a powerful impact on the steps that your audience will take after you’ve finished speaking.

How To Add A Motivational Remark To Your Speech Ending

The key to a good motivational remark is to inspire your audience. Your motivational remark should act as a ray of hope to your audience and positively inspire them to take a desired course of action.

Your motivational remark should not be negative in any way. You don’t want to guilt or coerce your audience into doing something or feeling a certain way. You want to leave them on a positive note to move forward with their life.

1. Khanh Vy Tran

Speech Ending: “No matter what you’re going through right now & no matter what the future holds for you, please don’t change yourself. Love yourself, accept yourself & then transform yourself.”

2. Mithila Palkar

Speech Ending: “Get a job, leave a job, dance, sing, fall in love. Carve your own niche. But most importantly: learn to love your own randomness.”

3. Andrew Tarvin

Speech Ending: “Anyone can learn to be funnier. And it all starts with a choice. A choice to try to find ways to use humor. A choice to be like my grandmother, to look at the world around you and say WTF–wow, that’s fun.”

4. Laura Vanderkam

Speech Ending: There is time. Even if we are busy, we have time for what matters. And when we focus on what matters, we can build the lives we want in the time we’ve got.

5. Julian Treasure

Speech Ending: Let’s get listening taught in schools, and transform the world in one generation into a conscious listening world, a world of connection, a world of understanding, and a world of peace.

6. Mariana Atencio

Speech Ending: Let’s celebrate those imperfections that make us special. I hope that it teaches you that nobody has a claim on the word ‘normal’. We are all different. We are all quirky and unique and that is what makes us wonderfully human.

10. Challenge

Much like a call to action, the aim of proposing a challenge at the end of your speech is to instigate your audience to take some desired course of action. A challenge should make an appeal to your audience’s emotion, and motivate them to meet it.

How To Add A Challenge To Your Speech Ending

To apply a challenge effectively to your speech ending, you need to make sure that it’s something relevant to your topic. Your challenge should drive the central topic of your speech forward, and make your audience engage in real-life steps to apply your idea in the real world.

While its always a good idea to set a high bar for your challenge, make sure its an achievable one too.

1. Jamak Golshani

Speech Ending: “I challenge you to open your heart to new possibilities, choose a career path that excites you & one that’s aligned to who you truly are.”

2. Ashley Clift-Jennings

Speech Ending: So, my challenge to you today is, “Do you know, would you even know how to recognize your soulmate?” If you are going out in the world right now, would you know what you are looking for?

11. Metaphor

Metaphors are commonly used as a short phrase that draws a comparison between two ideas in a non-literal sense. People use metaphors quite commonly in daily life to explain ideas that might be too difficult or confusing to understand otherwise. Metaphors are also great tools to be used in speech, as they can present your main idea in a simple and memorable way.

How To Add Metaphors To Your Speech Ending

To add a metaphor to your speech ending, you need to first decide on the main idea or takeaway of your speech. Your metaphor should then be organized in such a way that it simplifies your main idea and makes it easier for your audience to understand & remember it.

The key is to not make your metaphor overly complicated or difficult to retain and share. Remember that you’re trying to simplify your idea for the audience–not make them even more confused.

1. Ramona J. Smith

Speech Ending: “Stay in that ring. And even after you take a few hits, use what you learned from those previous fights, and at the end of the round, you’ll still remain standing.”

2. Shi Heng YI

Speech Ending: “If any of you chooses to climb that path to clarity, I will be very happy to meet you at the peak.”

3. Zifang “Sherrie” Su

Speech Ending: “Are you turning your back on your fear? Our life is like this stage, but what scares are now may bring you the most beautiful thing. Give it a chance.”

12. Storytelling

The idea behind using stories to end your speech is to leave your audience with a good memory to take away with them.

Stories are catchy, resonating & memorable ways to end any speech.

Human beings can easily relate to stories. This is because most people have grown up listening to stories of some kind or another, and thus a good story tends to evoke fond feelings in us.

How To Incorporate Stories In Your Speech Ending

A great way to incorporate stories in your speech ending is by setting up a story in the beginning and then concluding it during the end of your speech.

Another great way would be to tell a short & funny anecdote related to a personal experience or simply something related to the topic at hand.

However, remember that it’s the ending of your speech. Your audience is most likely at the end of their attention span. So, keep your story short & sweet.

1. Sameer Al Jaberi

Speech Ending: “I can still see that day when I came back from my honeymoon…”

2. Josephine Lee

Speech Ending: “At the end of dinner, Jenna turned to me and said…”

Facts are another excellent speech ending, and they are used quite often as openings as well. The point of adding a fact as your speech ending is to add shock value to your speech, and to get your audience thinking & discussing the fact even after your speech has ended.

How To Add Facts To Your Speech Ending

The key to adding facts to your speech ending is to pick a fact that thrusts forward your main idea in the most concise form possible. Your fact should also be something that adds shock value to the speech, and it should ideally be something that the audience hasn’t heard before.

Make sure that your fact is relevant to the topic at hand. No matter how interesting, a fact that doesn’t relate to your topic is going to be redundant.

1. David JP Phillips

Speech Ending: 3500 years ago, we started transfering knowledge from generation to generation through text. 28 years ago, PowerPoint was born. Which one do you think our brain is mostly adapted to?

14. Rhethoric Remark

Rhetoric remarks are another excellent way to get the wheels of your audience’s minds turning. Rhetoric remarks make your audience think of an imagined scenario, and to delve deeper into your topic. Rhetoric remarks or questioned don’t necessarily need to have a ‘right’ or one-shot answer, which means you can be as creative with them as possible!

How To Add Rhethoric Remarks To Your Speech Ending

Since rhetorical questions don’t need to have a definite answer, you have much freedom in determining the type of question or statement you wish to make. However, as with all other speech endings, a rhetorical question shouldn’t be asked just for the sake of it.

A rhetorical question should make your audience think about your topic in a new or more creative manner. It should get them thinking about the topic and maybe see it from an angle that they hadn’t before.

Rhetorical questions shouldn’t be too confusing. Use simple language & make sure it’s something that the audience can easily comprehend.

1. Mona Patel

Speech Ending: Pick your problem, ask “What if?” Come up with ideas. Bring them down. Then execute on them. Maybe you’re thinking, “What if we can’t?” I say to you, “What if we don’t?”

2. Lizzie Velasquez

Speech Ending: I want you to leave here and ask yourself what defines you. But remember: Brave starts here.

Another great way to end your speech with a literal bang is by using music! After all, if there’s something that can impact the human mind with just as much force as a few well-placed words, it’s the correct music.

How To Add Music To Your Speech Ending

To add music to your speech ending, you must make sure that the music has something to do with your speech theme. Remember that you’re not playing music in your concert. The piece of music that you choose must be relevant to your topic & work to have a contribution in your overall speech.

1. Tom Thum

Speech Ending: *ends the TED Talk with beat boxing*

16. Reitirate The Title

The title of your speech is its most important component. That’s why you need to pay careful attention to how you pick it, as it is something that your viewers will most likely remember the longest about your speech.

Your title will also act as a guiding hand towards how your audience forms an initial idea about your speech and is what they will associate your entire speech with.

By repeating your title at the end of your speech, you increase the chances that your audience will remember it–and your speech–for a long time.

How To Retierate The Title In Your Speech Ending

Your title is something that your audience associates your entire speech with. However, you don’t want to simply add the title in your speech end for the sake of adding it. Instead, make it flow naturally into your speech ending. This will make it seem less forced, and will also increase the chances of your audience remembering your entire speech ending and not just the title of your speech.

1. Ruairi Robertson

Speech Ending: I feel we can all contribute to this fight worth fighting for our own health, but more importantly, our future generations’ health by restoring the relationship between microbe and man. There is SOME FOOD FOR THOUGHT!

Need more inspiration for speech closing lines? Check out our article on 10 Of The Best Things To Say In Closing Remarks.

Level up your public speaking in 15 minutes!

Get the exclusive Masterclass video delivered to your inbox to see immediate speaking results.

You have successfully joined our subscriber list.

To sum up, speech endings are just as imperative to the success of your speech as speech openings, and you must spend just as much time picking the perfect ending as you do to determine your best possible speech opening. The words you speak at the beginning and end of your speech are words that your audience will pay the most attention to, and remember longer than any other part of your speech.

Still looking for inspiration? Check out this video we made on closing remarks:

Hrideep Barot

Enroll in our transformative 1:1 Coaching Program

Schedule a call with our expert communication coach to know if this program would be the right fit for you

opening speech quotes

8 Strategies for Productive Hybrid Meetings: Best of Both Worlds

oratory skills

Speak with Impact: A Guide to Mastering Oratory Skills

lasswell communication model

Lasswell’s Model of Communication Re-Explained

opening speech quotes

Get our latest tips and tricks in your inbox always

Copyright © 2023 Frantically Speaking All rights reserved

Kindly drop your contact details so that we can arrange call back

Select Country Afghanistan Albania Algeria AmericanSamoa Andorra Angola Anguilla Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Colombia Comoros Congo Cook Islands Costa Rica Croatia Cuba Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guam Guatemala Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iraq Ireland Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Marshall Islands Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands Netherlands Antilles New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Northern Mariana Islands Norway Oman Pakistan Palau Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Poland Portugal Puerto Rico Qatar Romania Rwanda Samoa San Marino Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Tajikistan Thailand Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Wallis and Futuna Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe land Islands Antarctica Bolivia, Plurinational State of Brunei Darussalam Cocos (Keeling) Islands Congo, The Democratic Republic of the Cote d'Ivoire Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Guernsey Holy See (Vatican City State) Hong Kong Iran, Islamic Republic of Isle of Man Jersey Korea, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Republic of Lao People's Democratic Republic Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Macao Macedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic of Micronesia, Federated States of Moldova, Republic of Mozambique Palestinian Territory, Occupied Pitcairn Réunion Russia Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan Da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Sao Tome and Principe Somalia Svalbard and Jan Mayen Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan, Province of China Tanzania, United Republic of Timor-Leste Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Viet Nam Virgin Islands, British Virgin Islands, U.S.

Fearless Presentations Logo

  • Public Speaking Classes
  • Corporate Presentation Training
  • Online Public Speaking Course
  • Northeast Region
  • Midwest Region
  • Southeast Region
  • Central Region
  • Western Region
  • Presentation Skills
  • 101 Public Speaking Tips
  • Fear of Public Speaking

100 Public-Speaking Jokes to Add Humor to Your Next Speech

100 Public-Speaking Jokes to Add Humor to Your Next Speech

So, if you are looking to add humor to your presentation, one of the best ways is to insert self-deprecating humor in the form of funny stories. A good story from your own personal experience will be easier to insert into your speech. The story will also create more of a shared experience with your audience. For details about how to use stories to add humor to your speech , click here.

With that being said, though, sometimes, you just need to get a quick laugh out of your audience. And good jokes can be a great way to lighten the mood. We’ve organized the post into four categories of public-speaking jokes.

100 Public Speaking Jokes to Add Humor to Your Next Speech.

  • Public-Speaking Jokes .
  • One-Liners about Public Speaking and Presenting .
  • Funny Public Speaking Quotes .
  • Dad Jokes that You Can Use as Presentation Icebreakers .

Public-Speaking Jokes for Your Next Presentation to Add a Little Fun.

Between you and I, telling jokes in front of an audience is pretty risky. But sometimes, just getting the audience to laugh right from the start can lighten the mood. Here are a few jokes about public speaking that you can use when you are public speaking.

Jokes about Being Nervous and the Fear of Public Speaking

7 Presentation Habits that Make Your Nervous Speaker

  • Why did the public speaker hire a pitching coach? Because he needed to improve his delivery!
  • I used to think I was afraid of public speaking, but just now, I realized I was actually afraid of audiences.
  • A public speaker asked the audience, “How many of you are afraid of public speaking?” About half the audience raised their hands. The speaker replied, “Don’t worry, I used to be too. In fact, there was a 50/50 chance that I’d canceled today’s talk!”
  • My wife was nervous about public speaking. So, I told her she should embrace her mistake to add a little humor to her delivery. She gave me a hug. Then she laughed.
  • Public speaking tip: Imagine the audience naked. But not if you’re giving a eulogy.

Funny Jokes about Presentation Challenges.

Okay, funny may be a little overexaggerated, but corny can work too. Here are a few jokes about challenges that can come up in a presentation.

  • Why did the PowerPoint presentation go to therapy? It had too many issues with transitions.
  • I was going to tell a time-traveling joke during my speech, but you didn’t like it.
  • I asked the librarian if there were any books on how to overcome the fear of public speaking. She whispered, “They’re in the self-help section, but you might have to speak up to find them.”
  • I used to be a baker before I became a public speaker. I kneaded the dough, and now I need the audience!
  • Why did the public speaker become a gardener? Because he knew how to plant ideas and watch them grow!

These Jokes Are about Audience Interaction.

Jokes Are about Audience Interaction

  • I asked the audience if anyone had experience with public speaking. A cricket in the corner started chirping.
  • The best way to become a confident public speaker is to imagine the audience in their underwear. Unless you’re speaking at a nudist colony.
  • I told my wife I was going to give a speech on procrastination. She said, “Maybe next time.”
  • How do you make a tissue dance during a speech? You put a little boogie in it!
  • Why did the extroverted computer become a public speaker? Because it had great social networking skills!

Public Speaking Jokes about Presentation Themes.

These funny (or corny) jokes are about the process of public speaking. You can easily use one of these if you start with… “Before I actually start my presentation…” then add the joke.

  • I asked my friend if he had any advice for public speaking. He said, “Yes, just imagine the audience is full of cats. They don’t care what you’re saying, but they’ll pay attention if you have treats.”
  • How do you organize a fantastic space-themed presentation? You planet!
  • Why did the public speaker bring a ladder to the presentation? To reach new heights in communication!
  • My friend tried to give a speech on patience, but the audience left before he finished. It seems they didn’t have the patience for it.
  • Why did the microphone apply for a job in public speaking? Because it wanted to be heard at work!

A Few Random Public Speaking Jokes (Use with Caution.)

These last few public speaking jokes are a little more tricky. You’d want to save these only for the right type of crowd.

  • I used to be afraid of public speaking, but then I realized it’s just talking in front of people. Now I’m terrified of public listening.
  • What’s a public speaker’s favorite kind of fish? The articulate!
  • I told my friend I was giving a speech about a famous chicken. He asked, “Is it poultry in motion?”
  • I was going to make a joke about public speaking, but I figured it would be better in front of a live audience.
  • Why did the scarecrow become a great public speaker? He was outstanding in his field!

Remember, just adding a joke or two to a speech won’t win over every audience. For help becoming a confident and effective presenter, we invite you to attend one of our 2-Day Fearless Presentations ® Classes . Click here for details.

Here Are a Few Public Speaking One-Liners to Get Your Audience Laughing.

You’ll have a much easier time just adding a funny one-liner every now and then. When you tell a joke, you typically have to get your audience to respond. And, in some cases, the audience will finish your joke.

So a well-placed one-liner will often get you a quick chuckle without as much risk. Here are a few that we organized into five different categories.

These One-Liners Are Related to Audience Interaction (Or Audience Reactions.)

Public Speaking One-Liners

  • “I’m not saying I’m a great public speaker, but I did once get a standing ovation… because I tripped over the microphone cord.”
  • “I asked my audience if they had any questions after my speech. One person raised their hand and asked, ‘When does the torture end?'”
  • “Public speaking is easy. It’s like riding a bike. Except the bike is on fire, you’re on fire, everything is on fire, and you’re in hell.”
  • “I used to be afraid of public speaking until I realized every audience is just a bunch of people hoping you don’t notice them.”
  • “I gave a speech on procrastination. The audience is still waiting for the punchline.”

Here Are a Few about Speech Techniques and Styles.

  • “I asked the audience if they knew the definition of a will. Apparently, ‘a dead giveaway’ wasn’t the right answer.”
  • “I don’t have a fear of public speaking; I have a fear of public not listening.”
  • “Why don’t public speakers ever get lost? Because they always find their way to the lectern.”
  • “I used to be a mime, but I couldn’t stay silent about it. Now I’m a public speaker.”
  • “I told the audience I’d be speaking off the cuff. Turns out, my cuff was more interesting than my speech.”

That’s Ironic! One Liners about Humor and Irony in Speech

That's Ironic! One Liners about Humor and Irony in Speech

  • “I used to be a public speaker at a mime convention. Needless to say, my speeches were a big hit.”
  • “I asked the audience if they could define irony. They said, ‘Sure, it’s like goldy and bronzy, but made of iron.'”
  • “Public speaking is a lot like a roller coaster. It’s terrifying, and I always feel like I’m going to lose my lunch.”
  • “I used to be a motivational speaker, but then I lost my train of thought. Now I’m just a ‘meh’-tivational speaker.”
  • “Why did the public speaker bring a ladder to the speech? To reach the high points, of course!”

These One-Liners Are about Speech Topics and Delivery.

  • “I told the audience I’m going to talk about time travel. They’re still waiting for my future self to arrive.”
  • “I tried to give a speech on humility, but everyone said I was the best at it.”
  • “Why did the public speaker get an award? Because he was outstanding in his field of expertise – corn farming.”
  • “I asked the crowd if they liked my tie. They said, ‘It’s not the tie, it’s what you’re saying that’s knot working.'”
  • “I tried to make a speech about sleep, but I dozed off during my own presentation.”

Funny One-Liners Related to the Challenges of Public Speaking.

  • “I asked the audience for silence during my speech. Apparently, their laughter didn’t get the memo.”
  • (If your audience won’t give you feedback.) “Dialogue is like a parachute – it only works when it’s open.”
  • (If you happen to break wind because of nervousness.) “I’m not a nervous public speaker. I just have a very expressive colon.”
  • “I told my wife I’m writing a book on public speaking. She told me to speak louder.”
  • “Why did the PowerPoint file go to therapy? It had too many issues with transitions.”

Funny Motivational Quotes Related to Public Speaking.

A really good way to add humor to any speech is to insert a funny quote from a famous person. These funny motivational quotes are very easy to insert. In fact, you can add them to your speech introduction right at the start. That will lighten the tension in the room and get your audience laughing.

Here are a few that always hit home!

Funny Quotes About Preparation and Delivery of Speech.

Funny Quotes About Preparation and Delivery of Speech

  • “The human brain starts working the moment you are born and never stops until you stand up to speak in public.” – George Jessel
  • “It usually takes more than three weeks to prepare a good impromptu speech.” – Mark Twain
  • “Speak clearly, if you speak at all; carve every word before you let it fall.” – Oliver Wendell Holmes Sr.
  • “A good speech should be like a woman’s skirt; long enough to cover the subject and short enough to create interest.” – Winston Churchill
  • “The best way to sound like you know what you’re talking about is to know what you’re talking about.” – Author Unknown

Quotes Related to Adding Humor to Your Speech.

If you are looking for a famous quote specifically about adding humor to a speech, try one of these.

  • “The first time I spoke in the West, the agents and organizers looked at me and said, ‘Oh, my God, she’s funny.’ And I thought, ‘Oh, my God, I’ve been funny all my life, but I never knew it.'” – Maya Angelou
  • “If you can’t make it good, at least make it look good.” – Bill Gates
  • “I have as much authority as the Pope. I just don’t have as many people who believe it.” – George Carlin
  • “The trouble with talking too fast is you may say something you haven’t thought of yet.” – Ann Landers
  • “I used to be a good communicator, but then I realized I was talking to myself.” – Author Unknown

Here Are a Few Quotes About Creativity and Writing.

Here Are a Few Quotes About Creativity and Writing

  • “I’m writing a book. I’ve got the page numbers done.” – Steven Wright
  • “I used to play piano by ear, but now I use my hands.” – Steven Wright
  • “I love deadlines. I like the whooshing sound they make as they fly by.” – Douglas Adams
  • “I don’t need time. What I need is a deadline.” – Duke Ellington
  • “I can’t understand why I flunked American history. When I was a kid, my father took me to all the historic spots. Every time I refused to get out of the car.” – W.C. Fields

The Funny Quotes Can Help You Make Your Point Better.

Like the last group, these funny quotes aren’t about public speaking. But you will likely be able to use them if you are delivering an informative speech.

  • “The only thing to do with good advice is to pass it on. It is never of any use to oneself.” – Oscar Wilde
  • “I have never been in a situation where having a sense of humor and a giving spirit didn’t lead to a better result.” – Ed Catmull
  • “The best way to convince a fool that he is wrong is to let him have his way.” – Josh Billings
  • “I like to talk about my obsession with food. I love to eat. I’m not a ‘foodie,’ but I do love to eat.” – Miranda Kerr
  • “I failed public speaking in college the first time and made a ‘D’ in the second class. It was horrible.” – John Grisham

These Last Funny Quotes Didn’t Fit the Other Categories. (LOL!)

These last quotes didn’t really fit in any of the other categories. But they are pretty funny. If you can find a way to insert them into your speech, you’re sure to get a laugh or two.

  • “It’s hard to be serious when you’re surrounded by balloons.” – Jerry Seinfeld
  • “I have six locks on my door, all in a row. When I go out, I lock every other one. I figure no matter how long somebody stands there picking the locks, they are always locking three.” – Elayne Boosler
  • “The early bird might get the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese.” – Willie Nelson
  • “I used to be a heavy gambler. But now I just make mental bets. That’s how I lost my mind.” – Steve Allen

Dad Jokes that You Can Use as Presentation Icebreakers.

Dad Jokes that You Can Use as Presentation Icebreakers

Years ago, I taught a leadership class for his team. And at the start of every session, he stood up in front of the group and told a corny Dad joke. The jokes were cringy. But whether the audience laughed or turned up their nose, they all smiled. Over the next few years, I noticed that Ron’s employee turnover was almost zero. It was unheard of in his industry.

It turns out that his team absolutely loved him. He made a tough job much more fun to come to. So, I changed my tune about Dad jokes. Here are a few that you can use to start your next speech or meeting.

Food Public Speaking Jokes

  • What do you call fake spaghetti? An impasta.
  • Did you hear about the cheese factory explosion? There was nothing left but de-brie.
  • What do you call a fish wearing a crown? A kingfish.
  • Why did the chicken go to the seance? To talk to the other side.
  • What did the grape say when it got stepped on? Nothing, it just let out a little wine.

Science and Technology Jokes.

  • Why don’t scientists trust atoms? Because they make up everything.
  • I told my computer I needed a break, and now it won’t stop sending me vacation ads.
  • Did you hear about the guy who invented Lifesavers? He made a mint.
  • How does a penguin build its house? Igloos it together!
  • What did one wall say to the other wall? I’ll meet you at the corner!

Academic Jokes for a Presentation.

Academic Jokes for a Presentation

  • Why did the math book look sad? Because it had too many problems.
  • Did you hear about the mathematician who’s afraid of negative numbers? He’ll stop at nothing to avoid them.
  • What do you call a factory that makes good products? A satisfactory.
  • I only know 25 letters of the alphabet. I don’t know y.
  • I used to have a job at a calendar factory, but I got fired because I took a couple of days off.

Spooky Jokes

  • Why did the skeleton go to the seance? To talk to the other side.
  • Why don’t skeletons fight each other? They don’t have the guts.
  • What did the big flower say to the little flower? “Hi, bud!”
  • I went to buy some camouflage pants, but I couldn’t find any.
  • What did one hat say to the other hat? Stay here, I’m going on ahead.

Miscellaneous Jokes

  • I only know how to make holy water. I boil the hell out of it.
  • Why did the golfer bring two pairs of pants? In case he got a hole in one.
  • Why did the bicycle fall over? It was two-tired.
  • What did the janitor say when he jumped out of the closet? Supplies!
  • What did the snowman with a six-pack say? An abdominal snowman!

by Doug Staneart | presentation skills | humor , jokes

View More Posts By Category: Free Public Speaking Tips | leadership tips | Online Courses | Past Fearless Presentations ® Classes | Podcasts | presentation skills | Uncategorized

Yardbarker

The best opening lines from movies

Posted: November 20, 2023 | Last updated: November 20, 2023

<p>People often talk about the best final lines in movies. They also talk about the best opening lines in books. Ah, but what about the best opening lines in movies? It’s great when a film can grab you right out of the gate from the very first line. These are the best opening lines from movies, all admittedly catchier than “People often talk about the best final lines in movies.” They aren’t all necessarily a single sentence, but we aren’t doing extended monologues or dialogue exchanges. These exist, in our minds, as an “opening line.”</p>

The best opening lines in movies

People often talk about the best final lines in movies. They also talk about the best opening lines in books. Ah, but what about the best opening lines in movies? It’s great when a film can grab you right out of the gate from the very first line. These are the best opening lines from movies, all admittedly catchier than “People often talk about the best final lines in movies.” They aren’t all necessarily a single sentence, but we aren’t doing extended monologues or dialogue exchanges. These exist, in our minds, as an “opening line.”

<p>It’s an iconic line, even if it is completely ominous. When audiences first went to see <em>Citizen Kane</em>, and a man they don’t even know as Charles Foster Kane said the word “Rosebud,” how did it register? These days, we are reflecting on the film’s legacy as one of the best movies ever made, Orson Welles’ masterpiece. It all begins with “Rosebud.” That sets the table for the story with the perfect hint of mystery.</p><p>You may also like: <a href='https://www.yardbarker.com/entertainment/articles/20_celebrity_deaths_that_were_written_into_their_tv_shows_102623/s1__39140412'>20 celebrity deaths that were written into their TV shows</a></p>

'Citizen Kane' (1941)

It’s an iconic line, even if it is completely ominous. When audiences first went to see Citizen Kane , and a man they don’t even know as Charles Foster Kane said the word “Rosebud,” how did it register? These days, we are reflecting on the film’s legacy as one of the best movies ever made, Orson Welles’ masterpiece. It all begins with “Rosebud.” That sets the table for the story with the perfect hint of mystery.

You may also like: The top 25 greatest hits albums of all time

<p>The first line of <em>The Prestige</em> is almost a call to action. “Are you watching closely?” says Christian Bale’s character. He’s not talking to us, the audience, but in a way, he could be. In a way, he’s speaking for director Christopher Nolan. <em>The Prestige</em> is about magicians, revenge, and obsession. It’s also about things not being what they seem. Better watch closely.</p><p><a href='https://www.msn.com/en-us/community/channel/vid-cj9pqbr0vn9in2b6ddcd8sfgpfq6x6utp44fssrv6mc2gtybw0us'>Follow us on MSN to see more of our exclusive entertainment content.</a></p>

'The Prestige' (2006)

The first line of The Prestige is almost a call to action. “Are you watching closely?” says Christian Bale’s character. He’s not talking to us, the audience, but in a way, he could be. In a way, he’s speaking for director Christopher Nolan. The Prestige is about magicians, revenge, and obsession. It’s also about things not being what they seem. Better watch closely.

Follow us on MSN to see more of our exclusive entertainment content.

<p>Disney’s <em>Tangled</em> was a fraught production, leading to worries it would end up a disaster and a box-office fiasco. It ended up being a big hit that spawned multiple TV shows. The film begins not with Rapunzel but with Flynn Rider giving a voiceover that starts with, “This is the story of how I died.” He follows that with, “Don’t worry, this is actually a very fun story,” but that still grabs you.</p><p>You may also like: <a href='https://www.yardbarker.com/entertainment/articles/the_20_best_bad_movies_of_all_time_112023/s1__30206336'>The 20 best bad movies of all time</a></p>

'Tangled' (2010)

Disney’s Tangled was a fraught production, leading to worries it would end up a disaster and a box-office fiasco. It ended up being a big hit that spawned multiple TV shows. The film begins not with Rapunzel but with Flynn Rider giving a voiceover that starts with, “This is the story of how I died.” He follows that with, “Don’t worry, this is actually a very fun story,” but that still grabs you.

You may also like: The 20 best bad movies of all time

<p>A lot of old horror movies start with lengthy monologues. Sometimes William Castle would appear to begin his own films to warn people of just how scary they were. <em>The Haunting</em> is not one of his. It’s directed by the prestige filmmaker Robert Wise, and it is what some might call “elevated horror” (and others would bristle at that terminology). The film is a literary adaptation, which may have helped with lending it an evocative opening line: “An evil old house, the kind some people call haunted, is like an undiscovered country waiting to be explored.”</p><p><a href='https://www.msn.com/en-us/community/channel/vid-cj9pqbr0vn9in2b6ddcd8sfgpfq6x6utp44fssrv6mc2gtybw0us'>Follow us on MSN to see more of our exclusive entertainment content.</a></p>

'The Haunting' (1963)

A lot of old horror movies start with lengthy monologues. Sometimes William Castle would appear to begin his own films to warn people of just how scary they were. The Haunting is not one of his. It’s directed by the prestige filmmaker Robert Wise, and it is what some might call “elevated horror” (and others would bristle at that terminology). The film is a literary adaptation, which may have helped with lending it an evocative opening line: “An evil old house, the kind some people call haunted, is like an undiscovered country waiting to be explored.”

<p>Francis Ford Coppola’s war epic is full of memorable moments and iconic lines, which is probably a relief to him, given that the film almost killed him. That includes the opening of the film, when a distraught Captain Willard laments, “Saigon. Shıt. I’m still only in Saigon.”</p><p>You may also like: <a href='https://www.yardbarker.com/entertainment/articles/the_25_greatest_westerns_of_all_time_112023/s1__37259443'>The 25 greatest westerns of all time</a></p>

'Apocalypse Now' (1979)

Francis Ford Coppola’s war epic is full of memorable moments and iconic lines, which is probably a relief to him, given that the film almost killed him. That includes the opening of the film, when a distraught Captain Willard laments, “Saigon. Shıt. I’m still only in Saigon.”

You may also like: The 25 greatest westerns of all time

<p>Let’s not unpack the many discussions that have been had about David Fincher’s <em>Fight Club</em> over the years. In terms of setting the stage for a movie, Edward Norton’s opening line of “People are always asking me if I know Tyler Durden” definitely does that memorably. Of course, the imagery it is paired with helps as well.</p><p><a href='https://www.msn.com/en-us/community/channel/vid-cj9pqbr0vn9in2b6ddcd8sfgpfq6x6utp44fssrv6mc2gtybw0us'>Follow us on MSN to see more of our exclusive entertainment content.</a></p>

'Fight Club' (1999)

Let’s not unpack the many discussions that have been had about David Fincher’s Fight Club over the years. In terms of setting the stage for a movie, Edward Norton’s opening line of “People are always asking me if I know Tyler Durden” definitely does that memorably. Of course, the imagery it is paired with helps as well.

<p><em>Rebecca</em> is a classic novel that spawned a classic film, the only film directed by Alfred Hitchcock to win Best Picture. The opening line has been riffed on, spoofed, and referenced many times over. “Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again,” says the character known only as the second Mrs. de Winter, which speaks primarily to the looming specter of the first Mrs. de Winter, the titular Rebecca.</p><p>You may also like: <a href='https://www.yardbarker.com/entertainment/articles/horror_ble_21_terrible_scary_movies_we_still_love_to_watch_110223/s1__38499797'>Horror-ble: 21 terrible scary movies we still love to watch</a></p>

'Rebecca' (1940)

Rebecca is a classic novel that spawned a classic film, the only film directed by Alfred Hitchcock to win Best Picture. The opening line has been riffed on, spoofed, and referenced many times over. “Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again,” says the character known only as the second Mrs. de Winter, which speaks primarily to the looming specter of the first Mrs. de Winter, the titular Rebecca.

You may also like: Notable actors we mostly recognize by their faces, not names

<p>Now, the opening monologue from <em>The Fellowship of the Ring</em> has Galadriel saying, “The world has changed. I feel it in the water. I feel it in the earth. I smell it in the air.” However, frankly, just opening a film by saying, “The world has changed” is enough to grab us and open up one of the most successful film trilogies ever.</p><p><a href='https://www.msn.com/en-us/community/channel/vid-cj9pqbr0vn9in2b6ddcd8sfgpfq6x6utp44fssrv6mc2gtybw0us'>Follow us on MSN to see more of our exclusive entertainment content.</a></p>

'Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring' (2001)

Now, the opening monologue from The Fellowship of the Ring has Galadriel saying, “The world has changed. I feel it in the water. I feel it in the earth. I smell it in the air.” However, frankly, just opening a film by saying, “The world has changed” is enough to grab us and open up one of the most successful film trilogies ever.

<p>George C. Scott may have refused his Oscar for <em>Patton</em>, which also won Best Picture, but you can understand why he won it. The film opens with a famed monologue in front of a giant American flag. That monologue is full of significant lines, beginning with Patton addressing his troops by declaring, “Now I want you to remember that no bastärd ever won a war by dying for his country. He won it by making the other poor dumb bastärd die for his country.”</p><p>You may also like: <a href='https://www.yardbarker.com/entertainment/articles/25_great_albums_from_bad_artists_112023/s1__31275875'>25 great albums from bad artists</a></p>

'Patton' (1970)

George C. Scott may have refused his Oscar for Patton , which also won Best Picture, but you can understand why he won it. The film opens with a famed monologue in front of a giant American flag. That monologue is full of significant lines, beginning with Patton addressing his troops by declaring, “Now I want you to remember that no bastärd ever won a war by dying for his country. He won it by making the other poor dumb bastärd die for his country.”

You may also like: 25 great albums from bad artists

<p>It speaks to the incredible filmmaking of Coppola on <em>The Godfather</em> that the opening line can be so iconic but also spoken by a character who is truly tertiary to the story. He is a man who has come to Vito Corleone on the day of his daughter’s wedding, looking for a favor. This man, Amerigo Bonasara, is a sliver of this all-time film, but he arguably speaks as thematically resonant a line as anybody: “I believe in America. America has made my fortune.”</p><p><a href='https://www.msn.com/en-us/community/channel/vid-cj9pqbr0vn9in2b6ddcd8sfgpfq6x6utp44fssrv6mc2gtybw0us'>Follow us on MSN to see more of our exclusive entertainment content.</a></p>

'The Godfather' (1971)

It speaks to the incredible filmmaking of Coppola on The Godfather that the opening line can be so iconic but also spoken by a character who is truly tertiary to the story. He is a man who has come to Vito Corleone on the day of his daughter’s wedding, looking for a favor. This man, Amerigo Bonasara, is a sliver of this all-time film, but he arguably speaks as thematically resonant a line as anybody: “I believe in America. America has made my fortune.”

<p>Stephen King is not known for concise or subtle writing. That hasn’t been an impediment to him being as highly adapted as any novelist. Plus, he occasionally provides exactly the right fodder for a film and an opening line. Take, for example, <em>Stand by Me</em>, which certainly grabs you by opening with, “I was 12 going on 13 the first time I saw a dead human being.”</p><p>You may also like: <a href='https://www.yardbarker.com/entertainment/articles/the_25_highest_all_time_grossing_films_in_the_us_102623/s1__31973549'>The 25 highest all-time grossing films in the U.S.</a></p>

'Stand By Me' (1986)

Stephen King is not known for concise or subtle writing. That hasn’t been an impediment to him being as highly adapted as any novelist. Plus, he occasionally provides exactly the right fodder for a film and an opening line. Take, for example, Stand by Me , which certainly grabs you by opening with, “I was 12 going on 13 the first time I saw a dead human being.”

You may also like: The essential Woodstock playlist

<p><em>The Sound of Music</em> isn’t just a musical; it’s a musical that opens with a song. Oh, and it doesn’t just open with a song but with the title song. The film's first line is, “The hills are alive with the sound of music.”</p><p><a href='https://www.msn.com/en-us/community/channel/vid-cj9pqbr0vn9in2b6ddcd8sfgpfq6x6utp44fssrv6mc2gtybw0us'>Follow us on MSN to see more of our exclusive entertainment content.</a></p>

'The Sound of Music' (1964)

The Sound of Music isn’t just a musical; it’s a musical that opens with a song. Oh, and it doesn’t just open with a song but with the title song. The film's first line is, “The hills are alive with the sound of music.”

<p>In these modern times, a film starring Johnny Depp and directed by Terry Gilliam is perhaps not going to be remembered as fondly, and <em>Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas</em> has always been more of a cult movie anyway. It hooks you in with the first line, effectively a statement of purpose: “We were somewhere around Barstow, on the edge of the desert, when the drugs began to take hold.”</p><p>You may also like: <a href='https://www.yardbarker.com/entertainment/articles/20_facts_you_might_not_know_about_the_hunt_for_red_october_112023/s1__37662044'>20 facts you might not know about 'The Hunt for Red October'</a></p>

'Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas' (1998)

In these modern times, a film starring Johnny Depp and directed by Terry Gilliam is perhaps not going to be remembered as fondly, and Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas has always been more of a cult movie anyway. It hooks you in with the first line, effectively a statement of purpose: “We were somewhere around Barstow, on the edge of the desert, when the drugs began to take hold.”

You may also like: 20 facts you might not know about 'The Hunt for Red October'

<p>When a movie begins with a character talking about the main character, before we even meet them, and they say, “He was the most extraordinary man I ever knew,” immediately you’re going to be like, “I’ve got to know more about this dude!” This opening line really set the stakes high for <em>Lawrence of Arabia</em>, but the Best Picture-winning epic cleared the bar.</p><p><a href='https://www.msn.com/en-us/community/channel/vid-cj9pqbr0vn9in2b6ddcd8sfgpfq6x6utp44fssrv6mc2gtybw0us'>Follow us on MSN to see more of our exclusive entertainment content.</a></p>

'Lawrence of Arabia' (1961)

When a movie begins with a character talking about the main character, before we even meet them, and they say, “He was the most extraordinary man I ever knew,” immediately you’re going to be like, “I’ve got to know more about this dude!” This opening line really set the stakes high for Lawrence of Arabia , but the Best Picture-winning epic cleared the bar.

<p>Even though this was the first of the many movies starring Spider-Man, when Peter Parker’s voiceover says, “Who am I? You sure you wanna know?” most people in the audience probably were already quite acquainted with their friendly neighborhood Spider-Man. That said, it’s still a nice enticement to keep you watching and a smart way to lead you into the superhero story. Let’s all find out who Peter Parker is together!</p><p>You may also like: <a href='https://www.yardbarker.com/entertainment/articles/21st_century_tv_shows_canceled_too_soon_110223/s1__38890714'>21st-century TV shows canceled too soon</a></p>

'Spider-Man' (2002)

Even though this was the first of the many movies starring Spider-Man, when Peter Parker’s voiceover says, “Who am I? You sure you wanna know?” most people in the audience probably were already quite acquainted with their friendly neighborhood Spider-Man. That said, it’s still a nice enticement to keep you watching and a smart way to lead you into the superhero story. Let’s all find out who Peter Parker is together!

You may also like: The 18 most controversial songs in country music history

<p><em>Rounders</em> went from underrated to overrated to an artifact of poker’s time in the spotlight (which it presaged, to be fair) since its release. Through it all, it had an opening line that sticks with you. Matt Damon’s Mike McDermott delivers plenty of tips and bon mots in his narration, but he begins with this crucial bit of advice: “Listen, here's the thing. If you can't spot the sucker in your first half-hour at the table, then you are the sucker.”</p><p><a href='https://www.msn.com/en-us/community/channel/vid-cj9pqbr0vn9in2b6ddcd8sfgpfq6x6utp44fssrv6mc2gtybw0us'>Follow us on MSN to see more of our exclusive entertainment content.</a></p>

'Rounders' (1998)

Rounders went from underrated to overrated to an artifact of poker’s time in the spotlight (which it presaged, to be fair) since its release. Through it all, it had an opening line that sticks with you. Matt Damon’s Mike McDermott delivers plenty of tips and bon mots in his narration, but he begins with this crucial bit of advice: “Listen, here's the thing. If you can't spot the sucker in your first half-hour at the table, then you are the sucker.”

<p>One of the first films in Tom Cruise’s rise to superstardom, <em>Risky Business</em> sees Cruise playing the kind of character he would eventually eschew: sleazy, sketchy, and mostly unlikeable. Back then, he was totally cool with playing somebody like Joel Goodson. Joel opens the film by saying, “The dream is always the same.” Now, he goes on to discuss a specific dream, but honestly, at the moment, that line can be taken broadly, it really is evocative.</p><p>You may also like: <a href='https://www.yardbarker.com/entertainment/articles/the_worst_tv_series_finales_of_all_time_092523/s1__29630108'>The worst TV series finales of all time</a></p>

'Risky Business' (1983)

One of the first films in Tom Cruise’s rise to superstardom, Risky Business sees Cruise playing the kind of character he would eventually eschew: sleazy, sketchy, and mostly unlikeable. Back then, he was totally cool with playing somebody like Joel Goodson. Joel opens the film by saying, “The dream is always the same.” Now, he goes on to discuss a specific dream, but honestly, at the moment, that line can be taken broadly, it really is evocative.

You may also like: One and done: 20 great films we never want to watch again

<p>When the American Film Institute made their list of the 100 best movie quotes of all time, at No. 81 was “Hello, gorgeous.” It is one of the rare opening lines on that list. When Barbra Streisand won the Oscar for starring in <em>Funny Girl</em>, she dropped the line in her speech. Even if you have never seen <em>Funny Girl</em>, you know the line “Hello, gorgeous.”</p><p><a href='https://www.msn.com/en-us/community/channel/vid-cj9pqbr0vn9in2b6ddcd8sfgpfq6x6utp44fssrv6mc2gtybw0us'>Follow us on MSN to see more of our exclusive entertainment content.</a></p>

'Funny Girl' (1968)

When the American Film Institute made their list of the 100 best movie quotes of all time, at No. 81 was “Hello, gorgeous.” It is one of the rare opening lines on that list. When Barbra Streisand won the Oscar for starring in Funny Girl , she dropped the line in her speech. Even if you have never seen Funny Girl , you know the line “Hello, gorgeous.”

<p>Spike Lee’s indelible film begins with a radio DJ speaking to his listeners, but effectively, to the audience. “Wake up!” he exclaims. He then exclaims it a few more times. It’s a call to arms, an imploring to be attentive. Not just to the film but to the world around you. It helps that this DJ is voiced by none other than Samuel L. Jackson, of course.</p><p>You may also like: <a href='https://www.yardbarker.com/entertainment/articles/20_facts_you_might_not_know_about_hulk_112023/s1__37710892'>20 facts you might not know about 'Hulk'</a></p>

'Do the Right Thing' (1989)

Spike Lee’s indelible film begins with a radio DJ speaking to his listeners, but effectively, to the audience. “Wake up!” he exclaims. He then exclaims it a few more times. It’s a call to arms, an imploring to be attentive. Not just to the film but to the world around you. It helps that this DJ is voiced by none other than Samuel L. Jackson, of course.

You may also like: 20 facts you might not know about 'Hulk'

<p>The iconic opening line of the modern era of film. It’s the perfect introduction to a character, world, and film. We’ve already seen Ray Liotta’s Henry Hill awash in a world of violence and chaos. Then, we hear his first line of voiceover: “As far back as I can remember, I wanted to be a gangster.” Indeed.</p><p><a href='https://www.msn.com/en-us/community/channel/vid-cj9pqbr0vn9in2b6ddcd8sfgpfq6x6utp44fssrv6mc2gtybw0us'>Did you enjoy this slideshow? Follow us on MSN to see more of our exclusive entertainment content.</a></p>

'Goodfellas' (1990)

The iconic opening line of the modern era of film. It’s the perfect introduction to a character, world, and film. We’ve already seen Ray Liotta’s Henry Hill awash in a world of violence and chaos. Then, we hear his first line of voiceover: “As far back as I can remember, I wanted to be a gangster.” Indeed.

Did you enjoy this slideshow? Follow us on MSN to see more of our exclusive entertainment content.

More for You

Republican deals blow to Trump supporting PAC

Republican Deals Major Blow to Donald Trump PAC

Politico's Heidi Przybyla with Declaration of Independence

Reporter lashes out after blowback for claiming 'Christian nationalists' believe rights 'come from God'

Supreme Court Justices Amy Coney Barrett, left, and Sonia Sotomayor speak during a panel discussion at the winter meeting of the National Governors Association, Friday, Feb. 23, 2024 in Washington.

Same black robe: Sotomayor and Barrett on why SCOTUS isn't as polarized as you may think

opening speech quotes

"The NBA was too black, a bunch of thugs and druggies" - Charles Barkley on the state of the NBA before Magic Johnson and Larry Bird saved it

Hair Discrimination Education

Texas school did not discriminate against Black teen by punishing him over dreadlocks, judge rules

Afghanistan's 'Angel of Death' is retiring from Air Force special ops

Afghanistan's 'Angel of Death' is retiring from Air Force special ops

Ex-Trump Aide Fires Back With Photo After GOP Impeachment Witness Calls Her a ‘Liar’

Ex-Trump Aide Fires Back With Photo After GOP Impeachment Witness Calls Her a ‘Liar’

Putin caught off guard Armenia CSTO

Putin Caught Off Guard as His 'Mini-NATO' Falls Apart

National Identity

18 Things Americans Are Absolutely Fed up With Hearing Over and Over Again

Buffett's 'best investment' to battle inflation

'It's not taxed at all': Warren Buffett shares the 'best investment' you can make when battling inflation

Opinion: Supreme Court can hold local officials accountable for outrageous rights violations

Opinion: Supreme Court can hold local officials accountable for outrageous rights violations

According to the researchers, the rate at which U.S. patients who underwent total knee replacement required follow-up surgery is expected to rise by up to 182% by 2030.

More patients need follow-up surgeries after knee replacement

Donald Trump gave a weary speech to conservative Christians on 22 February - AP

Trump struggles to say ‘evangelical’ and muddles up Israel in wild, incoherent speech at Christian event

Cowboys Mourn Death of 'Golden' Richards

Cowboys Mourn Death of 'Golden' Richards

drinking_2_kl_120122

Beloved beer brand liquidated after Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing

Sam Waterston on His ‘Law & Order' Goodbye and Getting to

Sam Waterston on His ‘Law & Order' Goodbye and Getting to "Kill the Bull" One Last Time

Speaker Mike Johnson

Discharge Petition Against Mike Johnson Moves Closer: 'Votes Are There'

Northern green anaconda on a riverbank.

New anaconda species said to be largest ever found during filming of Will Smith docuseries

Douglas competes on the uneven bars during the 2016 US Olympic team trials. - Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

Three-time Olympic champion Gabby Douglas ‘crushed’ after gymnastics return halted by positive Covid-19 test

Trump Claims He's ‘Being Indicted for the Black Population'

Trump Claims He's ‘Being Indicted for the Black Population'

French prime minister tries to appease farmers before farm show

New price law.

French farmers block an Edouard Leclerc distribution center near Nantes

Reporting by Sybille de La Hamaide, Dominique Vidalon, Piotr Lipinski and Elizabeth Pineau, editing by Ingrid Melander and Timothy Heritage

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles. , opens new tab

Ukrainian servicemen fire a self-propelled howitzer toward Russian troops near the frontline town of Bakhmut

Senegalese President Sall's opposition rivals reject talks

Senegalese opposition presidential candidates on Friday rejected an invitation to join talks that President Macky Sall says are necessary before a delayed presidential election can be scheduled.

Sri Lanka's President Wickremesinghe attends an interview with Reuters at his office in Colombo

IMAGES

  1. Best Opening Lines For A Welcome Speech

    opening speech quotes

  2. best speech opening lines

    opening speech quotes

  3. Catchy Opening Lines For Speech

    opening speech quotes

  4. 5 Powerful Quotes From Opening Remarks by Russell M. Nelson

    opening speech quotes

  5. 20 Famous Quotes To Start A Speech

    opening speech quotes

  6. Best Opening Lines For A Welcome Speech

    opening speech quotes

VIDEO

  1. Best speech ever

  2. Commemorative Speech

  3. Best speech ever

  4. Best Speech Ever

  5. Speech One The intro sequence

  6. Personal speech

COMMENTS

  1. Best Opening Quotes For Speeches & Presentations

    An opening quote is an articulate quote that sets the scene for the speech, presentation or writing that is to follow. Usually a deep, famous, poignant and/or funny quote, it helps the presenter (or writer) begin by immediately connecting their audience with the upcoming subject matter.

  2. 20 Great Quotes To Help You Deliver A Killer Speech

    Here Are 20 of the Best Quotations for Your Next Speech Use One of These Great Quotes When You Want to… Create LAUGHTER Quoting a comedian, famous wit, ancient proverb, or even a child's wisdom can generate an instant laugh during your presentation. And trust me, your audience wants to laugh!

  3. 15 Powerful Speech Opening Lines (And How to Create Your Own)

    Opening: "Imagine a big explosion as you climb through 3,000 ft. Imagine a plane full of smoke. Imagine an engine going clack, clack, clack. It sounds scary. Well I had a unique seat that day. I was sitting in 1D." How to use the power of imagination to open your speech?

  4. 50 Powerful Quotes To Start Your Presentation

    50 Powerful Quotes To Start Your Presentation: 1) "The secret of getting ahead is getting started." - Mark Twain 2) "Yesterday's home runs don't win today's games." - Babe Ruth 3) "If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough." - Albert Einstein 4) "If you're too comfortable, it's time to move on. Terrified of what's next?

  5. 50 Speech Opening Lines (& How to Create Your Own) l The Ultimate Guide

    1. Don't just "Say!" Sing A Song 2. Uniqueness of An Unpopular Opinion 3. The Power of A Prop 4. Quest of A Question 5. Hint of Humor 6. Share A Story 7. Surprise, Surprise, Surprise! 8. Foster Interest with Facts 9. Let's Visualize with "Visuals"

  6. 55 Powerful and Inspiring Quotes to Start Your Presentation

    Opening your presentation with a relevant quote can help set the whole tone for the rest of your speech. However, when making the quote, you need to remember two essential things: a) Quote the source of the sentence and b) "Tie it" to the central theme of the presentation.

  7. How to Start a Speech: Tips and Examples for a Captivating Opening

    1. Start with a question Engage your audience from the very beginning by asking them a thought-provoking question related to your topic. This approach encourages them to think, and it can create a sense of anticipation about what's coming next. Example: "Have you ever wondered how much time we spend on our phones every day?" 2.

  8. 101 Quotes to inspire speakers

    "People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel." - Maya Angelou ( Tweet this) "Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, concerned citizens can change world. Indeed it is the only thing that ever has." - Margaret Mead ( Tweet this)

  9. 120 Inspiring Quotes to Start A Speech with Impact

    Spread the love Contents 1 Inspiring Quotes to Start A Speech with Impact 2 Good Quotes To Start A Speech About Yourself 3 Good Quotes To Start A Speech 4 Funny Quotes To Start A Speech 5 Great Quotes To Start A Speech 6 Motivational Quotes To Start A Speech 7 Quotes To Start A Speech on Relationship 8 Quotes To Start A Speech on fashion designing

  10. 50 Inspiring Public Speaking Quotes to Help You ...

    As with all matters of the heart, you'll know when you find it.". - Steve Jobs. "If you hear a voice within you say 'you cannot paint,' then by all means paint and that voice will be silenced.". - Vincent Van Gogh. "Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.".

  11. 8 Opening a Speech: Get Their Attention from the Start!

    Typical Patterns for Speech Openings. Get the audience's attention-called a hook or a grabber. Establish rapport and tell the audience why you care about the topic of why you are credible to speak on the topic. Introduce the speech thesis/preview/good idea. Tell the audience why they should care about this topic.

  12. 60 Quotes for PowerPoint Presentations (2022)

    "The secret of getting ahead is getting started." - Mark Twain "If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough." - Albert Einstein "Words may inspire but action creates change." - Simon Sinek "Some people feel the rain. Others just get wet." - Bob Marley

  13. Top 20 Public Speaking Quotes

    "Be sincere; be brief; be seated." -Franklin D. Roosevelt "If you have an important point to make, don't try to be subtle or clever. Use a pile driver. Hit the point once. Then come back and hit it again. Then hit it a third time - a tremendous whack." -Winston Churchill

  14. How to Start a Speech: The Best (and Worst) Speech Openers

    #1: Socrates - "Apology" "How you, men of Athens, have been affected by my accusers. I do not know." #2: Patrick Henry - "Give Me Liberty or Give Me Death" "Mr. President, it is natural to man to indulge in the illusions of hope." #3: Frederick Douglass - "The Hypocrisy of American Slavery"

  15. Inspirational Quotes for Student Speeches

    Mother Teresa: "I know God will not give me anything I can't handle. I just wish that He didn't trust me so much." Walt Disney: "All our dreams can come true—if we have the courage to pursue them." Dr. Seuss: "Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind."

  16. Public speaking quotes: Funny, inspiring presentation insights

    "Feel the fear of public speaking and do it anyway." - Arvee Robinson "I was dreading winning. I didn't even prepare an acceptance speech. I was worried that I would slip up or do something horrible. I was shaking in my seat, putting on a posed smile.

  17. 25 Awesome Public Speaking Quotes

    1. The nervous and 2. Liars.". - Mark Twain. "No one ever complains about a speech being too short!". - Ira Hayes. "90% of how well the talk will go is determined before the speaker steps on the platform.". - Somers White. "It takes one hour of preparation for each minute of presentation time.".

  18. 25 Quotes From Motivational Speeches To Inspire You

    "Don't ever let somebody tell you that you can't do something. Not even me, alright? You got a dream, you gotta protect it. People can't do something themselves, they want to tell you you can't do it. If you want something, go get it. Period." — "The Pursuit of Happyness"

  19. How to Use Quotes in Your Speech: 8 Benefits and 21 Tips

    Pause before and after. You should pause briefly before the quote (a little suspense, and to grab attention) and then a little longer after the quote (to allow the meaning of the quotation to be absorbed by your audience.) Give the quotation respect, and let its impact be felt. Spice up your vocal delivery.

  20. 12+ Opening Speech Examples for Presentations & Quick Tips

    2. Open the Speech by Giving Compliment & Show Gratitude towards your Audience. Secondly, just after wishing greeting to your audience give them compliment and choose some words which show that you are delighted to see them there. Example: It's great to see you all, Thank you for coming here today.

  21. 15 Funny Quotes to Start a Speech With a Bang

    Starting a speech with a funny quote can help grab the audience's attention and ease any anxious energy in the room. It also signals to your audience that it won't be a mundane affair. However, this approach isn't always suitable and should be used cautiously.

  22. 50 Speech Closing Lines (& How to Create Your Own)

    5. Melissa Butler. Speech Ending: When you go home today, see yourself in the mirror, see all of you, look at all your greatness that you embody, accept it, love it and finally, when you leave the house tomorrow, try to extend that same love and acceptance to someone who doesn't look like you. 6.

  23. 100 Public-Speaking Jokes to Add Humor to Your Next Speech

    Here are a few funny quote you can use if you had trouble creating or designing your speech. "The human brain starts working the moment you are born and never stops until you stand up to speak in public.". - George Jessel. "It usually takes more than three weeks to prepare a good impromptu speech.". - Mark Twain.

  24. The best opening lines from movies

    The opening line has been riffed on, spoofed, and referenced many times over. ... When the American Film Institute made their list of the 100 best movie quotes of all time, at No. 81 was "Hello ...

  25. French prime minister tries to appease farmers before farm show

    French Prime Minister Gabriel Attal tried to ease tensions with farmers on Wednesday by outlining the implementation of measures announced this month and promising a new law to better safeguard ...