Warren Buffet, known as the “Oracle of Omaha,” is deemed one of the most successful investors of all time; he runs Berkshire Hathaway, which owns over 60 companies diversified across different markets.
Given his stature, it wouldn’t do you harm to heed to what he has to say about the most relevant skill required in your career.
In 2009, Warren Buffet delivered a talk to the students at Columbia University. In his speech, Inc. Magazine quoted him saying:
“Now, you can improve your value by 50 percent just by learning communication skills – public speaking.”
And, if you think about it, Buffet does make a strong point here.
Why Should You Work on Your Public Speaking Skills?
What is the first thing that comes to your mind when thinking about successful people? It is likely to be an image of a person that resonates passion, grit, and persistence. However, all these traits can lose value unless you effectively communicate your ideas and thoughts.
In fact, public speaking can be a well-trodden path for your career growth. For instance, if you are searching for a job or looking for a promotion, you might start to check out professional resume writing services near me or how to write a cover letter to compile your job application. However, a top-notch resume alone wouldn’t suffice unless you are able to demonstrate your competence and confidence during your interview.
Not only that, public speaking is not merely about getting on a stage and addressing a crowd. But this skill is essential for you to speak confidently in front of your colleagues, friends, and even on occasions when you have to give a presentation. In other words, with good public speaking skills, you will be demonstrating your leadership characteristics.
How to Improve Your Public Speaking Skills?
When thinking of how to put skills on a resume, you might be tempted to add public speaking to the list even when you are not entirely confident. But what happens when your supervisor assigns you a presentation to wow the clients for the next day?
If you wonder how you can work on your public speaking skills, here are tips that can help you out.
1. Learn How to Tell a Story
One of the best ways to catch an audience’s attention is to tell a story. However, there is a knack to it, and you need to mix up a few tools such as emotional contrast, open loops, and more.
In effect, you want the audience to be wondering, “What happened then.” Learning how to tell the story in the right way is a skill that can be practiced and acquired. Studies suggest that sharing personal and emotional experiences with a stranger can make them 30% more connected to you. And this can be your key when trying to get the audience’s attention.
2. Work With Your Audience
Most people mistake the concept of public speaking as an opportunity to explain everything you know about the topic. However, when you dig into the details, you might lose your audience. As you can imagine, the last thing you want is to drag out your speech as something boring.
Therefore, for every public speaking opportunity, you will need to know and understand who the audience is and how informed they are likely to be about the topic. It is then up to you to work your speech around the information they want to learn about.
3. Know your Time Constraints
Another point to bear in mind is that you should clearly know the time you have and how much you can fit in the slot. For instance, if you have only 10-15 minutes, you cannot effectively discuss ten points in the time. So, it is best to prepare a framework to think of what to say and the time allocated for that.
This structured approach will help to keep the audience connected and engaged. It can be hard to retain the attention of an audience when you talk about the same thing for more than three minutes. So it would be best to switch things up in between. You can do this by asking questions.
4. Practice on Video
When in doubt about your public speaking skills, the best way is to take a video. When you see yourself on screen, you will get a better idea of the way you move, how you deliver the speech, and nervous ticks, if you have any.
Your body language plays a critical role in your delivery, and your audience perceives you. You also have to work on your cadence when you practice your speech. Silence and pauses can significantly impact maintaining rapport with the audience.
You can notice all this better on a video recording of yourself. It is also the best way to see how you interact and how confident you come across to the audience.
5. Turn Your Nerves into Excitement
Finally, the most common attribute that steals away the confidence of many is the nervousness of addressing an audience. One way to address this is to shift your focus from how you will perform to how you are connecting with the audience.
Think of your audience as a single person you are talking to, someone you are very comfortable with. It won’t be that daunting to take up public speaking when you focus on this.
Speaking skills can get you visibility as an individual, inside and outside your company. In fact, you will even find that many organizations offer public speaking training as a part of their employee development programs like velvetjobs resume. It would be best to take advantage of these offerings – and work on a skill that can boost your personality and help you grow professionally!