An Imperative Skill: Public Speaking

In my last post I discussed the importance of developing interpersonal and communication skills. An important part of that is developing the skill to publicly speak. Public speaking is an absolutely imperative skill that is required for success in business and life. Many of us in this generation haven’t had that many opportunities to publicly speak and have depended on technological means of communication for the majority of their lives. Public speaking is the ability to spontaneously speak at any event on demand or deliver a well prepared speech to a large audience. You may have to make a toast after a social dinner, run a meeting at work, give a speech at a friends wedding, or give the keynote speech to introduce a new company product or service. The best way to improve these abilities is to learn about the best speaking techniques, watch and learn from great speakers, and practicing speeches in an environment where you can constantly get constructive criticism.

Some great books on speech and communication are:

  1. How to Win Friends & Influence People (Dale Carnegie)
  2. The Quick and Easy Way to Effective Speaking (Dale Carnegie)
  3. Public Speaking for Success: The Complete Program (Dale Carnegie)
  4. The Art of Public Speaking (Dale Carnegie)
  5. Cicero: On the Ideal Orator (Marcus Tullius Cicero)
  6. Rhetoric (Aristotle)
  7. On Speaking Well: How to Give a Speech With Style, Substance, and Clarity (Peggy Noonan)
  8. Speak Like Churchill, Stand Like Lincoln: 21 Powerful Secret of History’s Greatest Speakers (James C. Humes)


Helpful videos (tips of public speaking and communication, great speeches):


The best way to practice speeches on a regular basis is to join a club or group of people working specifically to improve their speaking skills. One great option is joining your local Toastmasters International club. Toastmasters International is a non-profit organization that is in 142 countries and has over 345,000 members. The group is dedicated to improving public speaking and leadership skill among its members. They have a structured system to progressively improve the skills of their members.


This is Saint Reagan signing off



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