I encounter it all the time. The look of concern and apprehension as my client confesses to me that they are an introvert. Their eyes tell me – “I’m sorry. This isn’t going to be easy. I sure hope you are up for the challenge.” They go on to express all their fears regarding speaking to groups and how they’ve been avoiding the traumatic experience that is sure to ensue. They are afraid they won’t be any good, but their gut is telling them that if they don’t take action, they will regret it.
While inclined to speak less on average, I am pleased to dispel the myth that introverts can’t be good at speaking to audiences. I have been witness to incredible speakers who captivate me from the beginning, engage me throughout and leave me inspired to act. In talking with these amazing speakers, they openly admit their introverted status. (Usually with the caveat that they will need to retire to their hotel room as soon as possible after their gig to recharge.)
Here are the Top 5 Reasons Introverts Are Great Public Speakers
1.They won’t speak to an audience unless they have something of value to pass along.
What an introvert has to say must be more important or more valuable than the discomfort they will have to go through to share it. This means they spend the time to contemplate why their message matters. By the time they take the stage there is a damn good reason for it.
2.They enjoy the thoughtful, quiet space and time needed to prepare for a presentation.
Let’s face it. Introverts like being alone because it refuels them. The process of preparing a great presentation requires alone time. The writing, researching, and organizing are all providing them with energy. It’s fun for them and the audience benefits.
3.They are succinct and purposeful with their word choice.
When an introvert is ready to deliver a presentation, they have completely contemplated every which way the topic could be communicated. They’ve thought of the pitfalls, the advantages and everything in between. They are deliberate and have thought through the talk from start to finish leaving nothing to chance.
4.Their passion comes from a deep meaningful place.
Introverts don’t speak for the lime light or the attention. They are driven by passion, responsibility, or purpose. They are reflective and work hard to create a great presentation. They are open to feedback and interested in the audience’s experience. They are not speaking for themselves. They are sharing a message the audience needs to hear.
5.The audience trusts them because they know their shit.
Introverts loath small talk. They are great listeners and observers. When they communicate, they like to communicate truth. They have evidence to back up their claims and they can site the source. They don’t make assumptions. They test theories and measure outcomes. They take their status of expert seriously. They won’t let something they say lead you astray.
So, if you are inclined to recharge in solitude be assured you have what it takes to be great at public speaking. You are uniquely qualified to make a powerful impact at the front of the room.