How to write a five minute speech in ten minutes!

Sometimes people say that one of the reasons that they don’t speak in public is because they don’t have the time to write a speech.   So here is the solution.  A simple, foolproof process for writing a short snappy speech that gets results.

Step 1: If you don’t already have a speech topic, then spend 1 minute brainstorming (or mind mapping!) potential topics and capture the results on a  piece of paper.

Step 2: Review all the ideas and pick the one that you feel is most relevant to your audience and then spend a minute brainstorming  a list of possible sub-themes related to this topic.

Step3: Pick the three ideas that you feel comfortable talking about and then outline your speech using the following simple structure.

  • Speech title
  • Strong opening – Don’t start with the traditional “hello my name is…and I am here to talk about….  You need to grab their attention right from the start with either some startling facts,or figures, a challenge, a question, a quote or a short personal story.
  • Body – Use your three themes from the brainstorm and develop each one a little.  NB: don’t forget to include some I statements that explain why this topic matters to you.
  • Conclusion – Don’t let your presentation tail off at the end. Finish it with a strong call to action where you spell out exactly what you want your audience to do as a result of listening to this speech.


  1. Robin on 18/03/2010 at 09:33

    Good blog subject, crisply articulated.

  2. wk on 20/03/2012 at 04:14


  3. Daniel on 24/10/2012 at 07:14

    Galvin, This is just what I was looking for. I’ve been a Toastmaster for several years and and the Education officer in my club. Though I love Toastmasters, there was something missing. In the real world, you need to be able to use your Toastmasters training to craft a speech on a moments notice. This blog was perfect. While giving you credit, I drafted a workshop based on this blog, tweaked it to fit my audience and gave it last week. It was well received and all who participated enjoyed the program. Gotta love the internet sometimes and how you can find almost anything you are looking for, including how to prepare a 5 minute speech in 10 minutes. I like to think of it as Uber Table Topics. Tomorrow I’m giving a speech presenttion on how to write a 5 minute speech in 10 minutes. I know my new audience will love it. Many thanks.

    Thanks for the inspiration. Daniel

    • Gavin Meikle on 24/10/2012 at 09:14

      Thanks Daniel, I am delighted that you found the post useful and were able to create a useful workshop from it. Let me know if you have any other specific topics youd like me to blog about. Best Wishes, Gavin, The Presentation Doctor.

  4. Anonymous on 28/05/2013 at 09:58

    Great text! Thank you very much!

  5. Anonymous on 12/02/2015 at 22:33

    Thank you so much! I used this to write a five minute speech for The American Legion and it helped a lot.

    • Gavin Meikle on 15/03/2015 at 10:35

      Thanks, Brianna, I am delighted to hear that this post was useful. If there are any other topics or questions you’d like me to write about, feel free to get in touch.


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