7 Public Speaking Careers to Consider If You Like Talking on Stage
Do you have what it takes to start a public speaking career?
If you are an American reading this, you are likely one of the twenty-something percent not afraid of public speaking. This soft skill is surprisingly a rarity, even though almost every career requires it at one point or the other.
However, although a much-needed skill no matter your job, some careers demand more public speaking abilities than others. If you have this coveted ability and enjoy pleasing people with your words, one of the following careers would be perfect for you.
1. Motivational Speaker
There is arguably no other career that relies on public speaking skills as much as motivational speaking.
You build your entire career and professional reputation based on your ability to inspire and motivate people with your words. If you are the type to give an eye-watering speech at the school pep rally or that friend in the group who is always hyping up the rest, this might be your career.
Ideally, a motivational speaker is a master of persuasion. Usually, a long class or speech is bound to leave people drained or bored. However, after listening to a good motivational speaker, the goal is for people to leave feeling energized and ready to take on life.
Being a public speaker can be a very lucrative and fulfilling one. You’ll need to establish your reputation and ability to motivate and inspire people. At this point, you may get lower-paying gigs, but as your reputation grows, each gig begins to bring way more money.
An advantage of this public speaking career is that it is not regular. You are not in a constant daily routine like most office jobs. There is the freedom to accept or reject gigs and determine your own rates per speech.
Has anyone ever suggested that you become a lawyer because of how well and frequently you argue?
Well, Law is one of those careers where it pays to be able to craft arguments backed by facts confidently. If you are a star debater in school and love reading, you might find this an exciting career path.
However, not all lawyers constantly hone their public speaking skills as some never have to speak in front of a judge. If you are going to become a corporate lawyer, you may not visit the courtroom very frequently. You may never visit the courtroom in some cases. This is because a vast majority of litigations do not go to trial.
Therefore, if you want to put your public speaking skills to good use as a lawyer, you should opt for a niche like criminal defense.
However, you must be ready to put your all into steering judgment in favor of your client. Although this depends on your research skills and legal knowledge, a lot also falls on your presentation skills.
As a lawyer, you must be ready to speak in front of a crowd that is hard to please - a judge and a jury. Your client’s potential losses are also a responsibility to consider as the amount of work you would have to study.
However, it could be the perfect career for you if you are a highly motivated individual willing to take on the world.
3. On-Air Personality
This vast classification covers job descriptions like a news announcer or a TV or radio show host. Most jobs requiring you to speak to the masses through communication media, particularly television, fall under it.
On-Air-Personalities must have an entire public speaking skillset to excel in their career. This includes speaking and mastering the art of mannerisms, tone, and body language.
For example, if you are delivering news that is exciting but you have an unamused resting face, you will have to consciously make an effort to express the appropriate emotion. As an OAP, you are responsible for delivering information, describing an event, or entertaining millions of people watching or listening to you.
It’s a given that your grammar skills must be on point, and you will need to be very creative. As with most public speaking situations, you might forget what you plan to say.
You could also think of a better way of saying it on the spot. It is important that you are able to smoothly add, subtract and reform words to optimize their delivery. If you love what it entails and would like the added perk of becoming popular, you should consider being an OAP.
4. Political Figure
One could say that a significant part of a politician’s career involves talking. If you decide to get into politics, you will find yourself talking non-stop for the duration of your career.
From political debates to interviews, speeches, and public addresses, the eyes of the masses are constantly trained on politicians. One wrong public address could devastate a politician’s career the same way a great one could profoundly boost it.
Many famous politicians are well known for their oratory skills and charismatic public speaking abilities.
Famous speeches like those of Martin Luther King and Barrack Obama are immortalized due to how well-crafted and delivered they were. Therefore, if you are a natural-born leader with great public speaking skills and aspire for similar status in society, you will do well to get into politics.
Furthermore, many people say politicians are sweet talkers. Some even call them liars, not necessarily because they tell outright lies but because they have mastered the art of sweet-talking and people-pleasing.
So go for politics if you always aim to please with your words and enjoy fame and power.
5. Master of Ceremonies
Also known as an MC or emcee, a Master of Ceremonies is the life of the party. The job description may vary depending on the particular occasion. However, the general idea is that the MC acts as the host for social events, and such events could be formal or informal.
The MC has to be in front of the audience many times throughout the night, easing them through the events being rolled out.
Such a person may have to introduce speakers or performers to the audience. They might also give background stories or context to the activities happening. Depending on the type of event, they could lighten the mood by making jokes and encouraging the desired atmosphere, etc.
An MC may even oversee the drinks and food of an event to ensure that everyone gets served well. They make sure people enjoy these occasions, and things go smoothly without hassle.
This makes an MC career very suitable for highly sociable people, and it might just be your dream job if you are a party animal.
Bonus points for you if you love being the center of attraction since you can easily steal the show as the Master of Ceremonies. The event organizers may not be too happy about that, though.
Fewer professions need as much public speaking confidence as standing in front of high school or college students. Although a class might be relatively small, it takes great skills to teach well for the students to understand.
It is even harder to hold their attention and prevent the chronic class sleepers from dosing off. You will need to be constantly on your toes, ready for the smart-ass or that one kid who asks questions that are weeks ahead in the syllabus.
Similarly, you’ll need to be spontaneously creative and adaptable as a teacher or college professor. Class situations are never predictable, so being able to think fast and express your new creative ideas confidently to your students will help.
It may not seem obvious, but teaching could be an exhilarating job if you love public speaking. You should consider it if you are a confident public speaker who loves a challenge.
7. Spoken Word Artist/Theater Performer
Are you bursting at the seams with creativity and seeking to express it? Becoming a spoken word artist is a great way to combine two creative abilities - public speaking and writing. In most cases, spoken word artists are poets who orally perform their works for an audience.
Here's an example of a spoken word artist who won America's Got Talent:
On the other hand, theater performance is more about performance and speaking. The idea is for a person to convey emotions and messages through the words of a poem or the script line. One needs to be able to get into character in front of many people, and it takes the confidence of a public speaker to do such well.
Spoken word artistry and theater performance involve many public speaking elements. Examples are the involvement of an audience, the necessity of stage awareness, and intuition. However, the most important highlight is the ability to tell a story, albeit with words and body movement.
If you are already the drama club champion at school or fancy yourself an artist, consider this a sign from the universe to pursue your interests further.
Conclusion: Public Speaking Careers
As someone interested in or considering a career in public speaking, you are a unicorn.
However, practicing this skill as you work towards a successful career will make you stand out even more. Furthermore, since you actually like public speaking, you will be doing a job you love in the future.