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How to Tell When You Need a Public Speaking Coach

If you are wondering How to Tell When You Need a Public Speaking Coach, this blog will help you decide.

I've been a public speaking coach for over three decades, and I can confidently say that there's no shame in admitting that you need help with presenting. The most intelligent people I know — especially those who reach positions of leadership — are often the ones who ask for help whenever they feel the need. So how do you tell if it's time to call in a professional? Here are some common signs:

You don't feel confident in your speech-making skills.

You might be surprised at how many people struggle with this.

Most of us are not born with the ability to speak confidently in front of an audience. It's something that we learn, and it takes time and a lot of practice.

Working with a speech coach is one of the best ways to improve your public speaking skills. A coach will help you build confidence and overcome nervousness by teaching you how to prepare speeches, connect with an audience and understand body language and vocal tone to present a speech with poise and purpose.

The biggest benefit of hiring a professional coach is that you'll get one-on-one attention so that you'll feel more confident about speaking in front of people.

You get nervous every time you speak in public.

No matter how much experience you may have, it's very common to feel nervous about public speaking. It may seem overwhelming, but by seeking help from a coaching professional, you will learn to focus, build confidence and manage your nerves with all kinds of tricks and techniques. When you learn to speak more confidently, your nerves will calm down.

A few sessions with an experienced coach will do wonders for your self-esteem as well as your ability to give speeches without fear and anxiety.

If you've been struggling with public speaking, start making changes today! Find an experienced coach to help you overcome your nerves and feel better about yourself when delivering speeches. They'll give you tips on how best to present yourself in front of audiences so that they're more receptive to what's being said.

You struggle to prepare speeches on a deadline.

A public speaking coach can provide the tools you need for effective speech writing.

First, your coach will help you develop a process of writing that works for you. A coaching professional will work with each client individually to determine what methods will make the most sense, taking into account their strengths and weaknesses as well as the time available you have available until your speech needs to be ready.

A coach can also help you overcome common obstacles to effective speech writing. You may not be able to write well on a deadline, so your coach can help develop strategies that work for that situation. For instance, your coach might suggest that you start by writing out all of your thoughts without worrying about the order and then go back to edit and organize your writing.

You feel like you can't connect with your audience.

  • Tell a story.
  • Use props.
  • Use humor.
  • Use visual aids like charts, graphs, videos, whiteboards, and PowerPoint presentations (if appropriate for your audience).

If you struggle to connect with your audience using any of these techniques (we'll get into why that happens later) it may be time for some coaching help.

You are running for political office but have no campaign speeches ready or planned.

If you are running for political office but have no campaign speeches ready or planned, need to be able to communicate your ideas clearly and succinctly, and want to connect with your audience on an emotional — not just intellectual level — you are a candidate for a professional public speaking coach. 

A public speaking coach can teach you how to create and deliver effective speeches for small and large events that will connect with your audience. They'll work with you to improve on your ability to make spontaneous comments during interviews or when addressing the press. Your coach can also help ensure that when you speak before large groups, such as rallies and town hall meetings, you can keep them engaged by connecting with people individually.

You have major speaking events coming up but struggle to prepare for them.

You should always be prepared for any speaking event — large or small. It is important to practice your speech several times before the big day so you're comfortable speaking and know exactly what to say and how to say it. 

You can't prepare for everything, but you can prepare for the most likely scenarios and have a backup plan if something unexpected happens and your speech goes off track.

Your current speaking skills aren't getting you the career advancement you want.

If you're a professional who wants to advance your career, you may have thought about getting a speaking coach. But it's not always obvious whether or not you should invest in one. After all, there are plenty of people who feel comfortable speaking in front of crowds and don't need help doing so. If you're currently confident about your public speaking skills and want to polish them up, this is also an option—but if there are specific areas where you feel like they could be improved, investing in a coach can be a worthwhile investment that pays off quickly.

If you find yourself in one of these situations, it's important to think about what the cost would be if you don't get a speaking coach. If your current skill level isn't getting you where you want to go, then it may be time for some outside help. A coach can help with everything from crafting powerful introductions and endings to delivering speeches that leave lasting impressions on listeners. 

You are frequently making presentations at work and could use some help with developing a presentation style.

You are making a lot of presentations at work and looking to improve your presentation style.

To be clear, there is no one right way to present a speech or deliver a message. But there certainly are wrong ways. Learning to recognize them is the first step in developing something that works for you and your audience. People who need help with this often:

  • Have an authentic style that doesn't align with what they want their audiences to hear
  • Are not sure how to balance needing their own voice with making sure their audience can hear them and understand what they're saying
  • Don't know how much energy or enthusiasm to put into each piece of content

It is OK to ask for help!

Asking for help is a sign of strength, not weakness. You are not alone in your journey to becoming a better speaker. There is no shame in asking for help, and it's important to find the right person who can support you as you learn and grow as a public speaker.

You will learn more from others, even if they have different perspectives than yours! If all goes well, they will also do their best to keep things positive along the way – which means less stress on you!


If you can relate to any of these situations, then it might be time to seek out a public speaking coach. Even if you aren't struggling with confidence in general, the act of giving a speech can be nerve-wracking and stressful—especially when it's something that you don't do often. A good coach can help take some of that pressure off by providing both one-on-one coaching sessions as well as group workshops where everyone works together toward common goals. Check out our coaching programs here if you're looking for tips on preparing yourself mentally before giving an important presentation or speech.