Public speaking and speaking in front of an audience is an important core skill. No matter what your position is, you will benefit from improving your public speaking skills, both personally and professionally.
Especially for women, speaking regularly at events, workshops, etc. is important and has more benefits than you might think:
- You'll improve your speaking skills and reduce your fear of speaking at the same time.
- You'll increase your visibility and serve as a role model to inspire the next generation of #WomeninTech.
- Your self-confidence will increase and through many new encounters you can expand your network and increase your market opportunities.
- Especially if you are aiming for a career as a manager, good public speaking skills are an important prerequisite.
Are you hesitant when it comes to public speaking? Maybe you gave a speech once and it didn't go well. Maybe you are afraid of public speaking. Or maybe you think you just don't have the talent to give speeches.
The truth is: public speaking is a skill that can be acquired. Even though some people are naturally better speakers than others, have a more pleasant voice, or are more charismatic, anyone can still learn to take their speaking skills to the next level. All it takes is some training as well as the necessary know-how.
And how exactly can you improve your speaking skills?
Improving your speaking skills takes practice and effort, but there are several ways to make progress:
Practice speaking: The more you speak, the more comfortable you will become with expressing yourself. Try to find opportunities to speak in front of others, whether it's in a formal setting like a presentation or a more casual situation like a conversation with friends.
Record yourself: Recording yourself speaking can help you identify areas where you need improvement, such as pacing, clarity, and tone. You can also listen to your recordings to hear how you sound to others.
Listen to others: Pay attention to how others speak, both in terms of what they say and how they say it. Observe their tone, inflection, and pacing, and try to incorporate those elements into your own speaking.
Read aloud: Reading aloud can help you practice your pronunciation and intonation. You can also use this as an opportunity to practice your public speaking skills by reading to a group of people.
Get feedback: Ask others for feedback on your speaking skills. This can be from a teacher, mentor, or friend who can provide constructive criticism and help you improve.
Take classes or workshops: Consider taking a public speaking class or workshop to learn techniques and get more practice. You can also join a group like Toastmasters International, where members work on their speaking skills in a supportive environment.
Remember, improving your speaking skills is a process that takes time and effort. Be patient with yourself and keep practicing!