Speech Anxiety: Overcoming the Fear of Public Speaking

By John Robert Colombo

This article addresses these questions about speech anxiety and the fear of public speaking.

Why do we fear public speaking?
Is speech anxiety normal?
What can we do to face our public speaking fear and speech anxiety?

Fear of Public Speaking

Speech anxiety is a general term for the sense of fear or panic that overtakes a person when he or she is called upon to speak or otherwise perform in public. There are other ways to refer to it: anxiousness, nervousness, "the jitters", stage fright, fear of public speaking, performance anxiety, etc. It usually strikes when someone has to deliver a presentation before a group of people. It makes little difference whether the audience is large or small, composed of familiar or unfamiliar faces. Psychologists consider speech anxiety to be a special case of what is commonly known as shyness. Read more…

Speech Coach for Executives
George Torok

Weak presentation skills can hurt you

Weak presentation skills can hurt you big time. If you are the CEO you need to present your message in a powerful way. Just think of the impact that your presentations have on your staff, clients, investors, the media, and the market.

You stand to lose:

Strong presentation skills will advance your success more than any other skill.
With effective presentation skills you will win more:
Money, profit
Sales, leads
People, followers and advocates
Morale, excitement and action

It might not seem fair but presentation style can make or break your message.

George Torok
Speech Coach for Executives

Boardroom Presentations: Sweat like a Horse

Maybe you heard that horses sweat, men perspire and women glow. But in the boardroom everyone who presents sweats – some more than others. If you are in management or want to be, you will need to present in the boardroom. This is the worst place to present. First understand why it is that way. Then use these techniques to be more successful when you present in the boardroom.

Beware of Boardroom Landmines
The boardroom is a place of punishment. It is where management and executives go to thrash the last bad quarter results and beat up somebody. Whoever presents today in the boardroom is the target for today’s flogging. Hence just entering the boardroom stirs up a defensive and offensive attitude in most meeting attendees. They are ready to defend their own performance and at the same time attack someone else just to escape. A boardroom is not a place to birth new ideas – it is a place to crucify suspected sinners, torture under-performers and kill dreamers.

The physical step-up of the boardroom is adversarial. The meeting attendees face each other across the table. They are not facing the speaker. In fact, to face the speaker they must turn their head and expose themselves to the physical discomfort of a kinked neck.

Read the rest of this article

George Torok
Speech Coach for Executives

Dupont letter

George Torok spoke recently at our Quarterly Sales & Marketing Meeting. He had the challenge of speaking at a critical time in the development of our company and immediately after our president delivered a serious message.

I am happy to report that George's presentation was very well received and made an important contribution to a successful meeting. George delivered on all accounts and them some. I especially enjoyed his manner of engaging, informing and entertaining us. We laughed at his anecdotes, pondered his insights on communication and scribbled his presentation tips. A great learning for all of us was the degree to which delivery is important to a successful presentation, versus the traditional obsession with the content.

I found it curious that George did all this without PowerPoint. And thanks for the useful tips for those of us who feel we must use PowerPoint.

I highly recommend George Torok as a keynote speaker and presentations skills expert for any organization where there are people who want to communicate and present more powerfully.

Derrick Russell
Corporate Marketing Manager
DuPont Canada

John Robert Colombo

I have known George Torok for close to a decade. The two of us work side-by-side to deliver courses at the American Management Association's Canadian Management Centre in Toronto.

After a session with George, I find I have picked up at least one new fact (or novel approach) to a problem (or a possibility) in spoken (or written) communication. So I value our association over and above our work as a team.

One of George’s special talents is his ability to bring out the best in other people. He is able to put his finger on the key passage of a speech or a report and right away find a better way to express it in words, tones, or gestures. He regularly works on a one-to-one basis with senior business managers and corporate executives to assist them in the drafting and the delivery of their messages in the most effective ways possible.

What surprises me the most about George is his ability "to turn a negative into a positive”. Because of his background in business and marketing, and because of his experience as a course leader and an executive coach, he shows genius in taking an ordinary, neutral, or negative statement and immediately transforming it into a message of hope, power, or achievement.

John Robert Colombo, C.M., D.Litt.
President, Colombo & Company; author of "Colombo's Canadian Quotations", editor of "Canadian Global Almanac", and other popular reference books

Canadian Institute of Management

Wow! Look what one CIM member said after hearing George Torok speak. Creative and expressive!

G reat
E ducational
O utgoing
R aconteur
G enerous
E ntertaining

T alented
O utgoing
R esonating
O rator
K nowledge

George is all of these words and more!! George will skillfully show you how to “Present Yourself with Power”. We had a terrific turnout at our dinner meeting – the best that I have seen. George knows how to engage his audience. George offered to continue teaching us through his many articles and free offers from his website. Thank you, George, for sharing your wonderful talent with us.

Kathi Kirsch, C.I.M.
V.P. Marketing
Canadian Institute of Management
Hamilton Branch

George Torok – speaker, trainer, role model

What do clients say about the Speech Coach for Executives?

“Your work with our Directors was just what we wanted and I appreciated the fact that you used your extensive knowledge and skills in a coaching style delivery.”
Carol Ford
Training and Development Specialist
Bombardier Aerospace

“George led an informative and thoughtful discussion in a very entertaining package. Not only did I learn ways to improve my presentation skills, but also to improve my day-to-day communication.”
Kathleen D’Amico
McMaster Alumni Association

"A tremendous success! Your keynote address was nothing short of excellent. I will be pleased to not only engage your services in the future but also recommend that others do the same."
Thomas W. Porter
Regional Director
Tradebank Canada

"Your information was great! You gave delegates a fantastic presentation that presented solid training in a highly entertaining package. As one delegate raved, 'This stuff was gold'."
Anne Babej
Director, Professional Development
Canadian Professional Sales Association

"George gave us a great example of how it's done from opening to closing. 100% rated him as excellent. Great content – really helpful."
Farah Allen-Goldson
Human Resource Professionals Association of Ontario

"The speaker not to be missed – George Torok gave us a compelling presentation on how to deliver a message with impact."
Suzanne Wredenhagen
Board of Trade Young Professionals

George Torok
Speech Coach for Executives

The CEO as Chief Public Speaker

CEO as chief speaker
The Many Roles of the CEO

• Leader and Chief Role Model
• Corporate Culture Setter
• Chief Marketing Person
• Chief Sales Person
• Chief Mapmaker
• Chief Trust Builder
• Chief Public Speaker

If you are the CEO of your organization
Your staff, the industry and the public are watching you. When you hide we wonder why? What might you be hiding? As CEO you must be putting your best foot and face forward often. We need to hear your message. We are watching you – what you do, say and how you say it. Put your face and message in front of your staff, your clients and the market place. And each time you do – do it with intent.

We want to know who we can trust
Can we trust your organization? To answer that question we need to know you. Can we trust you? We expect you to be ethical, open and available. If you are not, then we don’t believe that you are adding value to us. We quickly punish organizations that abuse our trust.

Why should the CEO speak in public?
It allows the public to put a face to your company. And we prefer to deal with people instead of faceless corporations. It will help to build confidence with customers, investors, suppliers and staff. MBWA goes much farther then hanging around the water cooler. It might offer you free publicity to get your message out with far more credibility than advertising.

How to improve your return on investment
Invest in the skill development of you and your key people. Invest in presentation skills coaching for your CEO. Invest in presentation skills training for all your key executives. Invest in communication skills training for your managers and sales professionals. Work with George Torok, The Speech Coach for Executives to train your executives for maximum return on investment.

You can call George Torok for a private consultation at 905-335-1997
If you reach his private voice mail – please say the best times and number to reach you.You can learn more at http://www.speechcoachforexecutives.com/

Executive Speech Coach

George Torok is the Speech Coach for Executives.

He has coached executives to deliver million-dollar presentations.

He has trained hundreds of managers and sales reps to deliver more powerful presentations.

George Torok has delivered hundreds of presentations . He once delivered a presentation on a moving train.

He has interveiwed hundreds of executives and business owners on his radio show, Business in Motion.

He is a member of CAPS, the Canadian Association of Professional Speakers.