Nervous about Public Speaking?

Focus on Serving Your Audience

Public speaking can be nerve wracking. If you dread it, you’re not alone. The good news is that you can take actions to shift your mindset and assuage your anxiety. Think about being a “giver,” not a “taker.” This means focusing on your audience, not yourself. What do your listeners need from you? Your job as a presenter is to help the people in the room (or on Zoom) grow and meet their goals. Think of your presentation as an act of service as opposed to a talent show or self-promotional opportunity. To get into this mindset, choose three to five influential leaders or stakeholders who will be in your audience and meet with them beforehand to ask about their concerns and goals surrounding the topic of your presentation. Then, adjust your message accordingly, with the intention of making sure you’re serving them. This will help you shift your focus outwards, from yourself to the audience, and as a result, ease some of your nerves.


This tip is adapted from Don’t Let Anxiety Sabotage Your Next Presentation,” by Riaz Meghji

source:  Harvard Business Review



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