17 July 2009

Glossophobia is the fear of speaking in public. The word derives from the Greek γλῶσσα glōssa, language, and φόβος phobos, fear.

A good PowerPoint presentation is not sufficient to eliminate glossophobia, even though it a the speaker’s confidence. A method that helps is to make many rehearsals, at least 7-8 full run-through’s speaking as if one was in front of a real audience, meaning standing up and using the remote control to advance the slide presentation on the pc.

It is not sufficient to watch the slides one by one and thinking in one’s head what one would say. A “true” rehearsal is different, and I suggest you do it.  Another product of the rehearsal is that you get to know exactly how long it takes you to go through your presentations, so you are sure not to go over the time you have been allotted.  Going over time is very annoying for the audience.

It is also very helpful to rehearse in front of a colleague, friend or family member, and obtain useful feedback on the clarity and persuasiveness of the presentation. The important thing is that the listener should not interrupt us and only give the comments at the end.  Providing a notepad to write down comments as the rehearsal progresses is a good way to remember everything.

You might also be interested in my “web rehearsal” service.

One Response to “Glossophobia?”

  1. Engaging information. Presenting and public speaking is such a challenging issue for some that any specific assistance to enable people today just how to cure their anxiety will be greatly appreciated. I would want to make use of this posting on the new public speaking website I’m constructing. Can you please let me know if this is doable. Thank you, Jane.