10 Things You Should Know About Public Speaking

My first “Ten things you should know about…” post is on (big surprise) Public Speaking. It’s the number one social fear and many people fear it more than death. Yet, there are people out there that you’ve probably never heard of that are getting paid over $10,000 to give a two hour presentation.

So here are ten things that you should know about Public Speaking:

  1. The only way to overcome your fear of public speaking is to actually get up and speak.
  2. There’s a lot of bad advice out there related to public speaking – and some of it even makes it into best selling books.
  3. Toastmasters can be an excellent resource for improving your speaking skills -just make sure you choose the right club.
  4. Public speaking is NOT like riding a bike – you need to keep at it to remain good at it.
  5. Your speech is should be focused on the audience – it’s not all about you.
  6. Content and style are both important – but in the real world, your content is more important that your style (provided your style isn’t extremely bad).
  7. It is an absolute must to practice your talk – even if you’re an experienced speaker.
  8. When you overdo it with vocal variety and gestures, your audience is less likely to take you seriously.
  9. What works best for someone else might not work best for you – try new things, but don’t be discouraged if you don’t get the same result as others.
  10. PowerPoint is an excellent tool for presenting – just make sure you use the right way and in the right situations.
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