According to some statistics, the fear of public speaking is quite common. In fact, out of every 100 people, 75 experience the fear of public speaking, also known as Glossophobia or PSA [Public Speaking Anxiety].
So, if you are one of those 75 percent of people, do not feel bad. You will meet many people with PSA. Now, you can not change your anxiety, but there is something that can help you with your PSA: public speaking courses !
But before we dive into those, let us understand what public speaking is and how and why it has become an important part of our lives
What is Public Speaking?
In the simplest words, public speaking is the process of communicating information to a live audience. It could be a business meeting, a conference, a speech in your high school auditorium, an introductory speech at your college or anything involving an audience and a speaker.
Public speaking is aimed at one or more of the following:
- Informing the audience
- Persuading the audience
- Entertaining the audience
Most successful speeches are a mix of all three aims. Often slideshows and presentations are accompanied with public speaking to add another dimension to your speech by making it appealing to the eyes of the audience.
The following are the three major components of great public speaking:
Style refers to the way you have designed your speech. Your speech should be strung together in a tasteful way that makes it fascinating to hear and read.
Your speech must not be a bit of everything. It should have a well-marked theme that is followed throughout the content.
And lastly, the content should influence the listener to take some action, benefitting you. For example, if your speech was designed for your high school election, the audience must feel motivated by your speech to vote for you.
Now that you know the main aims and components of impeccable public speaking let us move on to the history of public speaking and how it has gotten to where it is today.
History of Public Speaking
Public speaking is not a thing of today’s world. It is a tale as old as time. Well, not as old as time, but definitely as old as the existence of languages. Some experts link the history of public speaking back to ancient Rome and Greece.
Public speaking was then used to praise or persuade other people. Almost 2500 years ago, men in Greece were required to give speeches at assemblies and courts. Citizens would meet in the marketplace and discuss the laws, economics, politics and issues of the state. Under such circumstances, public speaking became an essential part of their lives.
Soon after, scholars and philosophers such as Aristotle wrote about the rules and regulations of public speaking, which was then known as ‘rhetoric.’ And ever since, public speaking has grown along with the ages and technology.
Importance of learning Public Speaking
Public speaking is one of the most important soft skills that any individual can learn with the help of public speaking courses. Words, as simple as they may sound, have the power to move and influence the whole world. Public speaking plays a vital role in the working of the world.
Think about what would have happened had Adolf Hitler been poor at public speaking.
And spoken words gain more power than written words in the hands of a compelling speaker.
Importance of public speaking in business
Public speaking in business can be divided into three major categories:
These include speeches made within the business. Internal speeches are delivered to employees to direct them or motivate them.
These are speeches made to personnel outside of your business. External speeches are delivered to investors, dealers and such.
Presentation and meeting
These are speeches made during a presentation or a meeting with the motive to promote your business or your product or services.
Learning public speaking with online courses
There is no magic solution to perfecting the art of public speaking overnight. Instead, it’s a process to help you overcome your fears and learn this art bit by bit. In public speaking courses, you will be given tips to improve your confidence and let go of your fear. You need to implement these tips thoughtfully and see the results yourself.
Following are some of the tips to get better at public speaking:
More than half of the upcoming problems can be broken down with an effective plan. So you need to plan what your speech will be, how you will deliver it, how long it will be, do you need to engage with the audience and more.
Find the answers to these smaller questions before you draft your speech. Edit and re-edit your draft until you are satisfied with the results. And remember, great speeches are not born in a day. It takes days, if not weeks, to have the best output.
Practice makes a person perfect. Well, if not perfect, at least better. Practicing your speech not only familiarizes the concept of it in your brain but also helps overcome the fear of public speaking.
We recommend you practice out loud in front of a mirror to work on your expressions along with the words. Or better yet, practice in front of your friends or family so they can point at your errors.
Engaging with the audience does not mean asking them questions or taking their opinions. It also includes forming your speech and presenting it to make the audience feel your presence and power. An example of this can be seen in the pauses people take while delivering a powerful speech.
These pauses give you a breather every now and then and give the audience time to think and reflect on what you just said.
The last tip you need to follow is consistency. Your speech should be consistent throughout its duration. No highs and lows. What most people would do is start off very strong and end up depleting their energy by the end of their speech.
So, instead, you should have the same level of energy and enthusiasm all through your speech to keep your audience engaged.
Jobs in Public Speaking
If you have a communications degree or certificates from public speaking courses, you are eligible to apply to thousands of jobs. There are over one million jobs in the field of public speaking out there. You can work in the areas of public relations, journalism, social media, event planning, marketing, advertising, human resources, sales and a lot more.
That was everything you had to know about how to learn public speaking with the help of online public speaking courses. These courses help you face your PSA and overcome it.
Orator Academy offers such courses that help you get better at public speaking and meet your end goals. The courses at Orator Academy are curated by experts that will guide you through the process with the help of guidance from mentors.