Business Review has talked to Alin Comsa (left of picture) and Andrei Dunuta, the founders of SELFTRUST Academy, to find out how executives in Romania deal with public speaking.
Are there any top managers in Romania struggling with public speaking?
Andrei Dunuta: From what we know, yes, there are many top managers that have challenges when it comes to public speaking. Some of them work with communication specialists to better organize their public appearances. The question that can arise is if it is normal to be challenged when you speak in public, even you are a top manager or not. Our answer: yes, it is very natural to have intense feelings when you give a speech, what`s important is to understand what your difficulties are, so that you can solve them. Once you understand what the problems are, they are half solved. You just need to give time to work with them and energy to practice the behaviors needed for a memorable speech.
How can public speaking training help employees in their day-to-day activity?
Alin Comsa: Firstly, a good public speaker is someone who trusts him or herself. The simplest and most efficient way to grow your self-trust is related to the ability to speak in public. It is clear that, because you will manage to express more clearly and more efficiently your ideas, you will be able to obtain better results and, naturally, you will be better understood. If you think in terms of efficient communication, any person who speaks well in public has a better chance to obtain better results and effects.
Did you have cases in which people were too afraid to get on the stage and start talking in front of an audience?
Andrei Dunuta: Of course. Almost always, before starting the public speaking course, people are afraid to appear on the stage and speak. When you communicate with a big number of people, a series of factors that can put pressure on you show up: the responsibility to give something useful to those who are listening to you, the desire not to affect your public image etc.
In an era where online has become embedded in our communication, is public speaking still relevant?
Andrei Dunuta: People buy people. It is true that online has grown a lot, but still, the best means of communication remain the direct ones – the human ones. Public speaking is one of the most refined means of human communication. We believe that always, no matter the historical moment we are living in, public speaking will remain very important and decisive for what we live or we are about to live.
What are some of the tricks employed by top managers that are speaking in public? When should you improvise and when is it better to learn your speech by heart?
Alin Comsa: Managers who speak well in public are the managers who understood that they need to offer something relevant to the public they are addressing to. Any impactful speech meets some important characteristics: simple, short, concise, clear. It`s important to know very well what you are going to say, at the same time you need an improvisation and spontaneity dose that will give the speech life and authenticity. Mark Twain synthesizes very well this request, affirming that, for a spontaneous speech, he needed to prepare for 2 weeks.
How important is public speaking in the case of entrepreneurs, for people that are just starting up a company?
Alin Comsa: It is said that there is a direct connection between public speaking and results. We live in a world where coherence, efficient communication, clarity have become extremely important. Public speaking, lastly, is about your capacity to make yourself listened and liked by the others, is about the capacity to make yourself understood. So, no matter if you are an entrepreneur with many years of experience or you just launched your business, the public speaking capacity is very important and directly influence your results.