Public speaking ethics will help speakers to develop guidelines that are useful know. How can we know what is ethical and what is not? Practicing ethical speaking and presentation is not just a matter of of common sense. Words are power. Ethics in public speaking are important because of the tremendous influence one can exert with words alone. There are numerous breakdowns of the ethics in public speaking. There are three main areas of ethics in public speaking.
These ethical foundations are:The Ethics of What You Say: What you say would include the words you use, how you explicate an idea, how you expound, illustrations you use and use of humor. The Ethics of How You Say It: Intonation, pace, pitch, power, sarcasm, and even your preparation. The Ethics of How You Present: Accurate, honest (to your self and the audience), original or attributed, plagiarized, avoiding language abuse, avoiding abusive language, avoiding degrading or derogatory speech, avoiding divisive speech. Included is plagiarism. There is a unique set of mores when it comes to using other peoples material.
If you do and fail to give attribution, it is simply considered stealing. Considering the ethical foundations and their applications will help in any speech making process. Is this important? Consider how many times politicians, athletes, or the famous are forced to apologize because of unethical conduct. Common sense is not so common, even among the experienced. Ethics (according to the American Heritage Dictionary) are a set of moral principles. They especially are principles relating to or affirming a specified group, field, or form of conduct.
Public speaking and those who attain mastery of public speaking have both mores and ethics they must follow. Failure to follow these could cost their credibility and future ability to speak. The damage a speaker can do because of not having their ethics in check means that the standards need to be even higher What are the most Important Ethics in Public Speaking? Be truthful, honest and accurate when presenting your speech. Be ethical and professional in actions and business practice. You never would want to do anything that would discredit yourself, the profession of public speaking or or other public speakers.
This requires consequential thinking… (“if I do this, what will the consequences be”). Try to understand the organization you will represent and the audience needs. You will need to know the approaches, goals and cultures of the those you will be speaking for and using speaker skills and expertise to meet those specific needs. Be original, both in speech and writing or, if using material from another speaker or writer, have approval (in writing) and give credit. Using the material of another is usually limited to stories, illustrations and anecdotes.
Have and maintain a relationship of shared responsibility and respect, dignity and professional courtesy, and the highest ethical standards with other speakers. You should never say anything bad about another in your social or professional conversation unless asked by the speaker to critique their speaking. Even then, treat them respectfully. Maintain the highest ethical standards and practices and to help protect audiences from fraud or unfair practices from the speaking profession. Additionally, great speakers try to eliminate practices that bring discredit to the speaking profession.
Consider these 7 ethical points in preparing your speeches. Don’t plagiarize. If someone else said it, tell your audience that they said it. Give credit where credit is due. Never mislead. Misrepresenting statistics is an obvious twist of the truth, but what about not mentioning minor product defects? You’ll always have to use your judgment, but never, ever intentionally mislead an audience. Prepare well. Not only will preparing well improve your speech, good preparation is also an ethical necessity. Without adequate research, it’s easy to unintentionally distort the truth.
Look into all facts and statistics; assess all claims for their validity. Prepare so that you can adequately answer any questions that your audience may have. Record your sources and be ready to give them if asked. Use sound reasoning. It’s easy to make illogical and unsound things sound good with pretty turns-of-phrase. Don’t do it. Support your claims with evidence and clear logic. Tell the whole story. Consider the consequence. What will the consequences of your speech be? Even if everything you say is complete and true, consequences still matter.
Telling one person that they could get an extra line of credit might open up new business opportunities; telling another might lead to his bankruptcy. Respect yourself. Don’t try to defend something you don’t believe in. Be consistent with your own beliefs. Respect your audience. Don’t try to fool them. Don’t ever speak down to them. Avoid racial slurs, ethnic jokes, and other potentially offensive content. Above all, do what feels right. If you don’t feel comfortable with something, don’t do it. If it doesn’t pass ethical guidelines, don’t do it. Understanding ethics in public speaking isn’t hard: if it’s right, do it; if it’s wrong, don’t.