Mark Grimm


How to Choose a Speaking Coach

JointCUMtg1Many would like to improve their speaking, but often don’t know where to start. Here’s some straightforward advice: How to Choose a Public Speaking Coach

We all know public speaking can be nerve-wracking, yet it’s difficult to find the time in the schedule to prepare effectively. You’re not a communications expert, so why put yourself through the stress of preparing and delivering crucial talks or presentations without support?

Instead of the nerves and chaos surrounding public speaking, what if you just got support? We do. Ginger Founder Sarah Lloyd-Hughes says she never does a big talk without getting help from one of the team. ‘However good you are, a coach is always better,’ she says, ‘they have the distance needed to make the right choices about your speech.’

So, we’ve got you. You just need to drop us a line and we’ll fix you up with the right coach to help you succeed.

5 Tips for Hiring the Right Public Speaking Coach

Now Identify the coach’s style.
Does the coach practice tough love when your executive needs a gentler approach? Or would your executive respond best to a Jillian Michaels-type, while this coach is more of a Richard Simmons? In order to achieve real, lasting results, it’s critical to identify the approach your executive will respond best to, and identify a public speaking coach who embodies that approach.
Have them explain their process.
A truly successful public speaking coach will have a tried and true method, perfected through years of experience. If your candidate is vague or uncertain about the process, that’s a red flag. But if the coach can walk you through a step-by-step plan for initial diagnostics, customized action plans, and ongoing evaluations, you have a contender.
Test their knowledge of your field.
A football coach and a baseball coach both improve athletes’ performance, but you wouldn’t hire a football expert to train your pitchers. And the same is true for a public speaking coach: you need someone who knows the game. Look for someone who understands the specific pressures of the industry and the needs of the audiences your CEO engages with. Your public speaking coach doesn’t need to have the personal experience of leading a Fortune 500 company, but a strong understanding of the corporate world will be immensely helpful.
Check their references.
Who has this coach worked with in the past? Do you consider those former clients to be skilled public speakers? Call the coach’s references: are they able to concretely articulate all the ways the candidate helped their executives improve? If you’re getting lukewarm responses or hazy answers, you may need to look elsewhere.
Look for chemistry.
Finally, perhaps most importantly, find a public speaking coach your executive will respect and enjoy working with. They don’t need to be best friends but, if coach and client don’t at least get along, your executive won’t be motivated to improve, and you’ll be wasting your budget.