Many people are naturally terrified of getting up in public and giving any kind of presentation. Indeed, merely standing in front of an office with a few people in it can send shivers down the spine of even the most level headed manager. And yet, people do manage to do it every day.

For some, getting up in front of a huge crowd is no problem. They speak clearly; they motivate, and they can keep a room captivated. Of course, this isn’t something that people are born to.  Good presenters are created not born. It would be tough to find a natural reason why a few are genetically predisposed to being able to speak in front of a group, when you see someone looking as if it comes naturally you can be sure they didn’t always find it such a breeze.

For all the apparently natural confidence that many people have, it’s probably true to say that when they first started, they struggled. The first time on stage was undoubtedly full of trips and stutters, and they doubtless didn’t sleep the night before. But they powered on through, and they tried again.

And again, and again.

And then they reaped their reward.

Take a look at the people in your organisation and notice that those that are doing the best are often the ones that are happy to stand in front of the rest of you and speak openly and loudly and with assurance. They seem to be able to give both good and bad news without stumbling. They can chair a meeting, present to the board and make information palatable and enjoyable. And because of this, they do well.

People who speak tend to get on well because confidence is an asset in business and those at the top are on the look out for it. Having confidence and being able to show confidence, however, are two different things. The self-assured speaker can do well because he or she overcomes that barrier, they show to their peers and their bosses that they can do what others can’t. They are, for want of a better word, ‘brave’ and don’t mind standing up and telling people what has to be said. And this is noticed.

Not many meek or timid people make it to the top of the pile. Yes, some do, and yes, some get there by being overbearing and brash, but you don’t have to be like that. Being bold, self-assured and courageous doesn’t mean you have to step on others, you can be compassionate and kind at the same time. Indeed, some of the best public speakers I know are exactly like this. These are people that inspire others to do great things, and because of that, they earn more.

So, if you’re looking for a career boost, you might not need to study books, you might not need to go to college, you might not need a lengthy training programme . No, you might find you can progress further than you ever have before by getting some simple practical advice and just taking the plunge and speaking.

Speak often, speak with passion, speak with composure and your career will open up before you.

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