It may seem like talking about yourself is easy. After all, who knows you better than you? But, speaking in front of an audience is harder than it looks. If you ever need to introduce yourself in front of an audience, it’s best to be prepared.
You may be preparing an “About Me” speech for a class, or you might need a quick two-minute speech about yourself before beginning a longer presentation. Either way, it’s helpful to include some of the following details:
- Your name
- Where you are from
- Your interests and hobbies
- Your passion in life
- Your role model(s)
- Fun facts that demonstrate your unique personality
- Your relevance or role in the situation
If there is a multimedia component to the speech, consider adding personal photos of yourself. And when in doubt, mention your pets; animals are always a crowd-pleaser!
A great speech about yourself for school should make your classmates feel like they know you better after you finish speaking. Here is an example of a class speech in case you need to introduce yourself in 100 words.
My name is Joshua Rowland, and you may not know that I can break four concrete blocks with one punch. Last month, I received my third-degree black belt in Tae Kwon Do. In my 16 years of life, it’s my greatest accomplishment. I’ve been involved in martial arts since I was three. My younger brother, Marcus, is also a martial artist, as are our parents. Our passions as a family are physical fitness and spending time together, which martial arts allows us to do. After graduation, I hope to become a martial arts instructor by majoring in kinesiology. Thank you.
By focusing on his accomplishment, Joshua was able to naturally bring his passion into the speech. He was also able to continue the thought with a goal for the future.
Your slideshow is ready, the video is queued up – but you’re not ready without an introduction. Business presentations show your colleagues that you are knowledgeable, experienced, and relatable. Check out an example of an introduction to a business presentation.
Hello everyone, and thank you for coming out this morning. My name is Ruhi Mallaya. Before I begin the presentation, let me tell you about myself. I graduated from Yale and I have been working at Commerce Farm for six years. Let me tell you, Commerce Farm has taught me a lot about finance, but a lot more about fantasy football. If you don’t have your team picked yet, I suggest you spend the break trying to beat my picks. Good luck with that! Besides winning the office league every year, I spend my non-work time with my dogs and new baby rabbit. They have been a great audience for my rants about cash flow and liabilities, but somehow I think today is going to go better…
Ruhi has established herself as professional yet funny. Her expertise in the office’s hobby lets people know that she is good at what she does, yet entertaining to be around.
When you’re celebrating a happy occasion, it may be time for a toast. Focus on your relationship to the person, experiences you have had together, and why you are especially glad for their good fortune.
Hello, everyone! I’m Missy, the maid of honor. Here we are, at Ryan and Skylar’s wedding. I’ve known this great couple since college. They were already inseparable at that point, which made me jealous in that I’m-so-happy-for-you way. Still am, actually! Skylar and I love yoga, and I remember the moment during a class she told me that Ryan was the guy she wanted to marry. Even though we were in Uttanasana position, I knew that the love in her heart was what brought her true relaxation. Ryan is officially invited to karaoke night as long as his Bon Jovi can beat Skylar’s, which no one’s can. Skylar is my best friend, so Ryan, you are now my best friend-in-law. Cheers to the happy couple!
Although most of the speech was about the bride, Missy managed to talk about three connections she had with Skylar: college, yoga, and karaoke. Her speech was funny, yet sentimental, which is a good tone for a toast.
If you’re introducing another person, talking about yourself might not seem appropriate. But, it’s possible to introduce both yourself and another speaker if you focus on your connections. How did they influence you? What was your most important interaction?
My name is Oscar Young, and I’m here to introduce my friend and mentor, Dr. Arturo Sandoval. I first met Dr. Sandoval when I began my doctorate in archaeology 20 years ago. He gave me some sound advice that I’ve never forgotten: “Never stop digging.” It works in every part of my job, whether I’m on an actual dig or trying to locate a good picture of an ancient mandible in the library archives. Dr. Sandoval taught me the value of believing in your intuition and using your experience to guide your future. He is a true role model, and like you, I am looking forward to hearing more of his pearls of wisdom. Ladies and gentlemen, Dr. Arturo Sandoval.
Oscar used his relationship with the speaker to introduce himself as a person who shares those values. Both he and Dr. Sandoval sounded impressive to the audience, even though he was only speaking for a short period of time.
You may be getting ready to teach a new course or preparing a TED Talk. Either way, your audience needs to settle in for a long period of time with you. It’s important to be personable but authoritative on your subject.
My name is Erin Stewart, and I am a former bully. It’s taken a long time for me to admit that about myself. I wanted to blame other kids for the ways I used to lash out at them, or my siblings for how angry I used to become. But, one day, I ran into a former victim of mine at college, and I was surprised that she didn’t seem happy to see me. After talking for a few minutes, she told me how my cruel words stuck with her every day since junior high. How my comments started to define the way she saw herself. I ended the conversation in tears. I always thought they were to blame, but it was me. That day I changed my major to Social Work, and I’ve been deeply passionate about making life better for every child – victim and bully – to help end the cycle of anger and hurt. Today, I’m here to talk to you about how social workers can better prepare foster children for transitions without relying on a fragile set of emotions.
By admitting that she used to be a bully, Erin has taken the audience into her confidence. She has shared a vital moment in her personal and professional life that has brought her to the stage. Her passion for social work is evident in just a few short lines about herself.
Ready to write your own short speech about yourself? Keep these pointers in mind when you do.
- Start with a grabber sentence. Your audience wants a reason to keep listening.
- Set the tone. Use a little humor if the occasion calls for it, or stick to a serious tone if humor doesn’t seem appropriate. Roasts are events where self-deprecation is part of the fun.
- Don’t brag. Boastful speakers don’t impress audience members. Find ways to make yourself sound interesting without bragging about your accomplishments.
- Prepare appropriately. Write an outline and a rough draft. Read it out loud to yourself or others. But don’t over-rehearse – speeches about yourself should sound genuine.
- Memorize your speech. Try not to bring notes to the podium when talking about yourself.
- Be concise. You want your audience to know you better, but you don’t need to tell them your life story.