Though it might not seem obvious at first glance, public speaking continues to be an important skill for many professions. In fact, many employers place a premium value on public speaking skills. Candidates who possess those skills are often placed into prominent roles within a company. Many find themselves on a fast-track to leadership. But how do you include public speaking skills on a resume? We have the tips you need to make employers aware of your valuable communications skills.
It’s important to understand why these skills are in such high demand. For someone who feels comfortable with communicating ideas, public speaking skills may seem like something everyone should possess. After all, don’t we all communicate with others every day?
Unfortunately, most people are not really that comfortable speaking in a public setting. Many shrink from being called upon in class, business meetings, or other large-group settings. Many more are leery of being asked to make presentations, train other employees, or otherwise take on any role that puts them under the harsh glare of the spotlight.
Call it stage-fright, if you will. The average person just isn’t all that excited about being the center of attention in any training session or discussion. And employers understand that fact all too well. Most have dealt with employees who struggle to communicate ideas when they’re put in those types of settings. As a result, those employers recognize just how rare and important public speaking skills truly are – and value job candidates who possess them.
(We wrote a good article here on skills to include on a resume)
Unlike some types of skills, public speaking is not a single skill that you can simply list on a resume. Instead, public speaking skills encompass a variety of skills that combine to make you an effective public communicator. Moreover, you are unlikely to find too many job postings that ask for public speaking skills.
Instead, many of these postings will mention key skills that might make you an effective public speaker. By learning to recognize these skills, you can more effectively convey your public speaking ability to any potential employer. They include:
One of the most important public speaking skills is the ability to read an audience. You should be able to determine what they need to hear and adjust your communication during the speech to accommodate their reaction. Do they seem engaged? Are they visibly bored or maybe confused? A speaker who can read his audience knows how to stay on the right communication path.
Are you an articulate speaker? In this case, articulate doesn’t just mean the ability to speak clearly. It also means being able to convey complex ideas in an easily-understood manner. If your public speaking skills include being articulate, be sure to mention that in your resume.
Do you command presence when you’re on a stage or in a meeting? The best public speakers, trainers, and educators have that engaging presence. They also have a style that captures and maintains an audience’s attention. Employers can always utilize employees with these types of public speaking skills.
Whether you’re a solid writer or someone who composes presentations on the fly based only on an outline, composition skills are critical. If your public speaking skills include the ability to compose presentations, be sure to convey that information on your resume. And don’t forget to include key composition skills like research ability, organization of ideas, and storytelling.
These days, no set of public speaking skills is complete without some familiarity with technology. For example, PowerPoint presentations are commonly used for seminars, meetings, and other public speaking engagements. Skills in this area include the ability to create presentation slides and manage a presentation’s operation.
Public speaking skills can be something that sets you apart from your job search competitors. When you recognize that fact and properly include them in your resume, those skills can be the key to landing you that great job you deserve.