Speaking to groups is difficult for most people, and it can be especially difficult in the workplace. We are all afraid of looking stupid or unprepared, and at times we even feel we are being judged. We seem to think that speaking is all about us, which it is not.

It is even more difficult for introverts who are not comfortable speaking out at meetings or group situations. They are typically “processors” not “expressives”. Because of this, introverts are often perceived as not contributing, not being a team-player or just not interested in the agenda. But the truth is, they are simply introverts and not comfortable speaking out. They prefer one-on-one or smaller group discussions.

According to GingerPublicSpeaking.com

“Introverts are phenomenal listeners, which makes them aware of the needs of others. For introverts, that’s why speaking (instead of listening) can feel completely unnatural.” “An introvert realizes that they are not the most important person in the room — they are there to service the audience. This simple shift in perspective dramatically decreases presentation anxiety because they focus on more important things than themselves”.

Introverts often make remarkable presenters.

Some tips to consider:

    1. Look to examples of great speakers or mentors who may be introverts as well. Identify what resonates with you, jot them down and try to incorporate them into your style.
    2. Remember it’s not about you, it’s about your listener. Tape into your innate ability to understand your listener and recognize the value you bring to others.
    3. Use a simple template to speak out in meetings:
      • Make a concise point
      • Give one reason supporting it
      • Reiterate your point
        This simple structure will allow you to easily organize your thoughts quickly and precisely.
    4. Since you are naturally a good listener, try to summarize concepts the group may have identified as important. This adds value to the group and let’s your voice be heard.
    5. Lastly, your value is in not waiting until you have something perfect to say but rather contributing your to the team to be of service.

Another useful resource is this Ted Talk on “The Power of Introverts”: