For many people, public speaking is a daunting and nerve-wracking assignment. In the digital age we currently live in, public speaking may seem like a less valuable skill than in previous decades – but it’s actually more important now than ever before.
Below we’ll dive into the top reasons why honing your public speaking skills are so important, and why it’s worth your time and effort to become a better public speaker.
1. Public speaking leaves positive impressions
Public speaking enables you to create a lasting impression on those around you – it’s your opportunity to make an impact and leave people thinking about what you said long after the presentation has ended. Whether it’s a job interview, a student class presentation or even just introducing yourself to a room full of strangers, public speaking gives you the chance to differentiate yourself from other contenders.
2. Public speaking allows you to showcase your expertise
Public speaking gives you the opportunity to present your ideas and knowledge in a way that showcases your expertise. By taking the stage, you can demonstrate how qualified you are in a certain area of study or industry. This will help establish yourself as an authority and a thought leader in your field, giving your name more credibility and your brand more awareness.
3. Public speaking helps to sharpen your thinking
Having to organize your thoughts into an intelligible and persuasive presentation forces you to take a deeper look at the topics or issues at hand – and even helps you identify areas of improvement in your own knowledge base. It’s also a great way to practice problem-solving and critical thinking skills.
4. Public speaking builds your confidence & communication skills
Public speaking can be daunting, but once you make it through the presentation, you’ll have the confidence that comes with facing your fears head-on – which helps instill a feeling of accomplishment and self-assurance. As a seasoned speaker, when you enter a stage confidently, knowing that you can deliver a speech of impact, it’s an empowering feeling.
Additionally, having the ability to communicate your thoughts clearly and effectively is a valuable asset in any career, and public speaking provides the perfect opportunity to hone this skill. It enables you to express yourself more clearly and concisely. Oral communication is an essential part of having a successful career, and the more confident you become in presenting your ideas, the better equipped you will be to handle difficult conversations or negotiations.
5. Public speaking connects you with others & may enhance your professional development
Public speaking can be a great way to network and make connections with those around you, as it gives everyone in the room an equal platform to share their thoughts and ideas. Even if not everyone agrees, having a healthy debate is oftentimes the best way to create meaningful relationships with others.
Furthermore, it can help enhance professional development by giving people the opportunity to gain exposure in a specific industry or field. It can also help to increase your chances of getting hired, as many employers prefer candidates with strong public speaking abilities and experience.
How can I become a strong public speaker?
Below are some quick speaking tips and tricks, but the truth is, public speaking skills take some time to develop. Working with a public speaking coach or mentor, attending classes or workshops and listening to public speaking podcasts are all great ways to build your public speaking skills over time.
Public speaking tips
- Start off with an attention grabbing opener
- Make sure your speech has an appropriate length for the audience
- Speak slowly and clearly, emphasizing
- Maintain strong eye contact with your audience
- Take note of your nonverbal cues, and avoid body language that is distracting
- Use simple language and maintain a conversational tone
- Be authentic – let your personality shine through!
- Practice, practice, practice – the more comfortable you become with your material, the more confident you’ll be when presenting
Public speaking is an invaluable tool for anyone in the professional world, regardless of their industry. It can lead to countless networking opportunities and provide you with the confidence necessary to tackle other challenges, both in your professional career and personal development.
Tricia Brouk is an award-winning director, writer, producer and public speaking coach. If your goal is to become a seasoned, expert public speaker, she can help you get there.