You’ve Got the Right
When we have a problem we tend to believe we’re the only person with that problem.
Or that no-one else has our problem to the degree that we experience it.
So it may surprise you to know that most of the people who come to me for public speaking coaching have a variation of the same common problem:
They don’t believe they have a right to be heard.
“Everyone else is cleverer that me“, is the usual cry.
“I’m worried I don’t know enough.”
“If I mess this talk up it will ruin my career so it’s safer if I say nothing.”
What if I were to tell you that you possess something of great value that other people long to have?
Something no-one can benefit from unless you find the courage to share it?
That thing is your unique perspective.
We’re all very quick to credit others with more intelligence or more experience than ourselves.
But in any field there is not one single person who knows absolutely everything.
When you allow yourself to accept that your unique perspective on the world is of value to other people sharing it via the medium of public speaking will become something you long to do.
When you share what we know with an educated audience you do five truly valuable things:
1. You confirm what they already believed to be correct.
Don’t underestimate the value of this. There are very few people in any field who experience complete and unwavering faith in their own knowledge. Confirmation from an up-and-coming professional (i.e. YOU) is of great value to the long-in-the-tooth expert, even though he or she may choose not to show their own self-doubt to you!
2. You help them to consolidate what they already knew.
All professionals pick up facts about their area of expertise across the course of their career. But they don’t always manage to put two-and-two together without a bit of help. I call this a ‘Eureka moment’. Your talk may result in someone discovering the cure for cancer or the solution for world peace. Don’t underestimate your power (and don’t hide it from the rest of us!).
3. You bring them up-to-date.
When the information revolution merged into the digital revolution the people of the world began to produce far more literature than any single human could possibly read. This is why people go to conferences… so they can update their knowledge and fill in any gaps by listening to people who have read the literature they didn’t have time to. The information you know is valuable. When you organise information into a slick presentation its value increases manifold.
4. People create ‘experts’.
It’s an obvious thing to say, but people forget it. Leaders and experts are created by other people. You may feel that you’ve got a lot to learn but I guarantee that there are people in your industry with less experience than you who would love to learn at your feet. I don’t believe it’s ever too soon to start sharing what you’ve learnt through public speaking.
5. You are unique, and that’s invaluable.
Your professional and personal perspectives are gold bullion to the people who need them. You can put this to the test by addressing groups of super-smart scientists or mathematicians (or indeed any kind of academic). You bring to the party real world experience that text books and test tubes don’t contain. Learn to value your experience and do all you can to nurture and grow its worth.
Above all else, believe you’ve got the right to be heard, because it’s true. As Dr Seuss powerfully said, no-one is youer than you.