Both introverts and extroverts can make great public speakers. It is not so much whether you are an introvert or an extrovert that makes a difference but whether you deliver your message to the audience in such a way that creates value for your audience.
In this blog I am going to bust some myths about introverts and extroverts and show you how to embrace your type to make you a great public speaker.
What is an introvert? And what is an extrovert? There is some misconception about the definitions of introverts and extroverts. Often people think that an extrovert is a big, gregarious bubbly over-the-top life- of –the- party person. And they think that introverts are the shy, retiring wallflowers that are up against the wall at any party.
Here is the true definition of an introvert and extrovert.
An introvert is somebody who gets their energy replenished internally. An extrovert is somebody who gets their energy replaced and replenished externally. Introverts need some time to themselves, away from noise and people. This is how they get their energy back. Extroverts can have a busy, tiring day and still want to hang out with their friends at the end of the day. This is how extroverts get their energy replenished.
What does this mean for me as a speaker?
People often think that an introvert is going to have a hard time presenting because of the shyness factor. Similarly it is often assumed that for extroverts it’s just going to be a natural, easy process as they embrace the limelight already.
This is simply a myth.
Quite often, introverts make excellent presenters because of their reflective nature. They need time to take things in. They pause and they think about what’s going to work and what’s not going to work. The challenge for introverts is they can get stuck if their space is being taken up too much by other people.
On the other side, extroverts can sometimes make poor presenters. Yes, extroverts can be big and bubbly and engaging but they can actually take that way too far and actually be the centre of the whole show. It may be entertaining but actually overwhelming. An extrovert can forget about their audience unless they are getting the laughs or engagement.
How to deliver your message effectively as an introvert or an extrovert
- Engage and focus on the audience
Deliver on your promise on whatever it is that you were there to speak about. You need to engage and connect with the audience and both introverts and extroverts can do that really well. Get out of your own head. Your presentation is about your audience, not you.
2. Energy management
If you are an introvert, what is the self-care and energy management that you can do for yourself before and after your presentation? It takes a lot of energy to be on stage and you are there to put that energy and connection out to your audience. Don’t exhaust yourself by booking your appointments back-to-back. Give yourself some breathing space.
If you are an extrovert what do you need before and after your presentation? Perhaps beforehand it’s having a coffee with some people and/or a catch up with a friend or colleague afterwards.
3. Content delivery
For both introverts and extroverts, content delivery is key. Make sure you follow through on the promise of what you are there to deliver to your audience.
So whether you are introvert or an extrovert you can be a great speaker. It is about identifying what you are and utilising your strengths and being aware of your weaknesses to deliver great content to your audience in a meaningful way.
Here is my YouTube video on this topic
I’d love to hear from you on how you are managing your energy. How are you connecting with your audience?
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