View of a microphone on a stand with a blurred out conference room in the background.
Image: © weerayut/

How to master public speaking and boost your career

1 Mar 2019

Whether it be nailing the delivery of a keynote or dazzling colleagues during a presentation, becoming a pro at public speaking can benefit your career in myriad ways.

Friends, Romans, countrymen, lend me your ears: if you can fine-tune your public speaking skills, you could give your career an incredible boost and take further steps to achieving your loftiest goals and wildest ambitions.

Yet if it were simply as easy as setting your mind to becoming a great orator, everyone would do it. Speaking in front of people is daunting and can strike fear into even the most otherwise self-possessed people.

The best tactic to ward against deep, aching dread in advance of a speaking engagement is to plan. First off, establish what you want to say, and then look at that in comparison to what your audience wants to hear. It is within this crucial cross-section that you will find the things that are the most relevant and therefore the most interesting to whomever you’re addressing.

Take some time to fine-tune your turn of phrase. You should be eloquent and articulate without being verbose. Florid language, beautiful though it may be, can sometimes end up sounding like you threw a thesaurus in the washing machine and rinsed your talking points through it. The language you choose should be vivid and colourful but also, more importantly, should feel natural to you and in line with the level of formality expected.

You should also do dutiful research and compile airtight facts. There’s no point impressing audiences only to be later revealed as totally factually incorrect. If you are struggling to find a definitive answer on something, err on the side of caution and keep it out of your speech. You need to be an authoritative expert on your chosen topic, and falling into inaccuracies will achieve the opposite effect.

Try to avoid memorising your speech, as it will be pretty clear if you are recalling more so than you are engaging. It’s better to ‘visualise’ your speech, if you will. Instead of learning everything word for word, forge a clear idea in your head of each point you want to make in terms of a destination you need to arrive at.

You can pick up even more excellent tips on improving your public speaking by checking out this infographic, brought to you by Davitt Corporate Partners.

Click to enlarge. Infographic: Davitt Corporate Partners

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Eva Short
By Eva Short

Eva Short was a journalist at Silicon Republic, specialising in the areas of tech, data privacy, business, cybersecurity, AI, automation and future of work, among others.

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