Introverts make great public speakers.
Public speaking introverts, are that a thing?!
I am a self-proclaimed introvert and proud to be so. In my younger days, I would work hard at putting on an extroverted show as that is how I thought others expected me to behave.
It was exhausting. I couldn’t keep it up and I became much more content when I stopped trying and embraced the personality type that I am.
I no longer try to be anything else. We are often labelled as shy or lonely! Introversion is simply a preferred style of behaviour and the way that we choose to recharge our energy.
but you are quiet, you must be shy and afraid of public speaking!
When I tell people that I am an introvert I often get puzzled looks. They assume I am extrovert because I love speaking in front of an audience, but I’m not! They are applying the stereotype that as an introvert I must be afraid, anxious or shy. They seem really surprised that I am a confident and capable speaker.
The ability to engage an audience so they sit up and listen has little to do with whether you are introverted or not. Public speaking skills can be learned and with planning, preparation and practice, anyone can become a good public speaker.
In fact, introverts often apply themselves with commitment and dedication when it comes to learning the skills and applying the practice – and it pays off.
Introverts can be loud, confident and charismatic. We do enjoy socialising, being with friends and going out and about. We also like time alone to recharge, refresh and think, many introverts are great planners.
Public speaking introverts: Why do introverts make great public speakers?
Here are 5 things that public speaking introverts do differently when it comes to public speaking.
1. Speech writing is a solitary activity
Introverts enjoy spending time alone. We are quite happy putting in the time to draft, write and refine a speech. Introverts tend to enjoy writing and will delve within to come up with the right message.
2. Preparation is the key to a successful speech
Introverts don’t mind spending time alone to get the speech right, maybe seeking feedback but not usually until a significant amount of work is done. Introverts will pay attention to self-care to make sure they are at peak performance for the speech.
3. Introverts do their research
Knowing your audience is essential if you want to deliver a successful speech. You need to find out as much about your audience as you possibly can. Who are they? What do they need to know? What is their knowledge of your subject matter? Introverts will take time to research, ask questions and think through what the audience needs to know and how to shape the message.
You see introverts totally understand that a speech is never about the speaker. Focus on your audience and think about meeting their needs and you will not only deliver a better speech you will feel more relaxed.
An introvert won’t put themselves at the centre of a speech. Remember it’s not about you.
4. Introverts will ensure their speech is audience-centric
Not only during the planning stage but also during the delivery, an introvert will remain focused on the audience and this is an important part of getting instant audience feedback. If you are able to gain valuable non-verbal cues from your audience whilst you are speaking, you can make subtle changes.
5. Introverts never “wing it”
Being able to nail a speech in a confident and engaging way depends upon adequate preparation. A good speech is not dependent upon a particular set of social skills but a good speech is very dependent on the time you take to prepare. You can’t rely on people skills alone!
Public speaking introverts have many qualities and strengths. Susan Cain’s book Quiet is a fantastic read. Watch her TED talk The Power of Introverts below.
For too long, introverts have been misunderstood, labelled and undervalued. If you are an introvert, be proud. If you are a public speaking introvert I look forward to hearing you speak!
As a storytelling expert, known as The Story Midwife, I help leaders to create compelling presentations through business storytelling. Yes, public speaking introverts too!
Before becoming a Professional Speaker, I worked for over twenty years as a midwife.
As a World Class Speaking & Storytelling Coach, I’ll help you mine, refine and deliver a captivating story for your business or brand. Whether it is the boardroom, podium or stage; I can show you how to develop a persuasive presentation with a compelling story that will be hard to forget by anyone who gets to experience it.
If you would like to find out about training for your team, I’d love to hear from you. Contact me firstname.lastname@example.org or call +61 (0)438 902042.