I am quite often asked this question and my answer is a resounding yes!!
From my observations there is no clear relationship between introversion/extroversion and public speaking ability. There is also no clear relationship between introversion/extroversion and level of fear about public speaking. Many people assume that extroverted people will be more confident speakers but that is often not true. I have come across extroverted people who are very nervous and introverted speakers who are very confident. In fact, some of my clients who tell me they have mild generalised social anxiety, end up being the best speakers by the end of my courses!
Here are some reasons why I think that introverts can be excellent public speakers:
I don’t want to imply that extroverts make bad public speakers as this is simply not true. Tony Robbins is a well-known example of a great speaker who is very outgoing. Good public speakers who are extroverted are likely to have a different style to those who are introverted but neither is inherently superior.
There are benefits and challenges for each personality type.
Of course, this is oversimplified as being an introvert or an extrovert is only one aspect of someone’s personality. For example, I have said that introverts are more likely to prepare but I have also come across introverts who are great procrastinators!
Article written by Catherine Syme
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