Well, we’ve reached the last installment of this Becoming a Great Public Speaker series. In these blog entries (part 1, part 2 & part 3), I’ve shared my tips on how to get started as a public speaker. I’m very excited for you to see what I have planned for you next!
But first, I want to encourage you to keep growing and applying the skills you’ve learned so far.
I’m confident that as you continue to learn and develop your personal story, you’ll find more and more opportunities to share.
Here are three easy steps you can follow to keep your momentum going:
Step 1: Keep learning
Though having a conversation may seem simple, human interaction is amazingly complex. The art and science of communication is a subject that you could invest years of time studying. If you want to grow as a speaker, keep learning!
Whether you prefer books, podcasts, webinars, or live events, there are resources to help you expand your knowledge about public speaking.
There are many national and international organizations dedicated to training and encouraging amateur and professional public speakers. Groups such as Toastmasters International and the National Speakers Association provide online resources and host events in different cities throughout the year.
Additionally, I’ve found many inspiring and informative presentations about public speaking at TED.com. Also, check out all the great speakers who’ve shared their advice in this infographic.
You can study with some of those speakers, including me, right here in Boston. We regularly host events and seminars for anyone interested in developing their public speaking skills.
Step 2: Apply what you’ve learned
There’s no need to only practice what you’ve learned behind closed doors. Human beings are social creatures. We enjoy working with and learning from the people we know and trust.
Through our conversations and communications, we allow others to discover who we are and build that trust.
Use what you’ve learned about public speaking to better communicate your story and have more enjoyable conversations with your peers. Of course, don’t forget the most important (and my personal favorite) speaking skill, listening!
Whether you are talking to a single client over lunch or an auditorium filled with people, applying your speaking skills will enhance the experience.
Step 3: Tell opportunity where to find you
This can be a tough one. Most of us understand the importance of networking. You probably feel pretty comfortable in situations where you are telling others about what you do. But telling someone that you are available to give a speech about what you do takes things to a whole new level.
However, if you don’t tell people that you are willing to speak about your career or life, they probably aren’t going to guess. This is a situation where waiting for opportunity to knock might not be the best strategy. That’s why you need to tell opportunity where to find you.
Tell your friends and associates that you’re ready to take the stage and tell your story.
If you aren’t ready to speak before a large group, start small. Begin by volunteering to make presentations within your office or company, or volunteer your speaking services to a civic or other organization that could use the help.
I have met many wonderful people and had amazing experiences by agreeing to speak in front of a group. You can, too! If you’d like to join one of our public speaking get-togethers or need help finding volunteer opportunities, get in touch!
I’d love to meet you and your story.