The 6 best public speaking training courses (2024 edition)

Whether you’re just embarking on your professional career or you’re an established leader or new entrepreneur, there’s always room to expand and develop your skills. Few skills are as important or far-reaching as public speaking.

Public speaking is one of the surest ways to raise your impact. It helps build your credibility and enables you to communicate better with large groups. It can also help you become a better negotiator and a stronger listener.

Some people are naturally confident in front of a crowd. Even so, very few can become strong public speakers without considerable preparation, dedication and practice. Fortunately, plenty of tools are available to help you succeed.

Public speaking training courses can help you overcome your public-speaking-related anxiety and fear. They can also teach you how to use body language to communicate your message and value proposition.

Whatever your unique goal, the public speaking training courses we have recommended in this article can help you refine your skills.

What is public speaking?

You might think of public speaking as simply delivering a speech or presentation to an audience. In reality, it’s about more than that. Public speaking can take a wide variety of forms.

Public speaking is the art of sharing ideas, information and opinions in a way that keeps the audience engaged and informed. It involves any occasion in which you have to advocate for yourself or your business, whether that’s in front of just one or two people or a stadium full of listeners.

While a speaker might use visual aids to enhance their main presentation, public speaking is primarily about talking to an audience. It occurs in a person-to-person format, whether that’s in person or virtually. The speaker will hope to build a strong connection with listeners.

With the advent of technology and a multitude of devices and applications clamoring for attention, being able to keep an audience engaged with words is more important than ever.

What are the 5 Ps of public speaking?

The five Ps of public speaking are commonly referred to as planning, preparation, practice, performance and passion.

  • Planning refers to clearly understanding your speaking goals and carefully establishing what you will say to your audience.
  • Preparation is the work that goes into writing and delivering a great speech – doing your research, writing the script and preparing your slide deck.
  • Practice refers to the time devoted to practicing the speech out loud.
  • Performance is the actual speech, including the way you deliver the message, your body language and how you connect with the audience.
  • Passion is the amount of excitement and enthusiasm you bring to the speech. Ideally, your audience will come away with an understanding of the time and dedication it took to not only craft and design a great speech but your overall excitement about the topic.

Why are public speaking skills important?

Communication skills are the #1 skill sought by employers. However, many people feel intimidated or even terrified by the idea of public speaking.

It’s normal to be a bit anxious about speaking in front of people, but mastering the art of public speaking is essential for raising your profile both personally and professionally. Public speaking skills help you educate, inform and persuade those around you, from work colleagues to friends and relatives.

Your voice is your strongest asset. Being able to hold an audience’s attention while you articulate your ideas is incredibly powerful.

Public speaking skills can improve confidence and give you the ability to advocate for causes you believe in. According to Forbes, being a strong public speaker gives you greater visibility at work. This puts you in a better position to take advantage of career opportunities such as raises, bonuses, promotions and attendance at industry events.

As an entrepreneur, being a strong public speaker raises your credibility and impact in the eyes of clients and investors.

How to choose the right public speaking training course

Public speaking training courses are one of the best ways to grow as a speaker, guiding you in how to amplify your voice and win over a crowd.

You might find it challenging to choose the right training course for you. Here are a few things to consider before making your decision:

  • Consider the cost. If cost is a factor, establish a budget you’re willing to spend for your public speaking course. Many courses are free or low-cost, while others cost hundreds of dollars.
  • Read the course description. The course description gives you detailed information you need to know about the class. You’ll be able to determine whether it works with your schedule and budget and whether any parts of the course take place live or on video chat. Never commit to a course without familiarizing yourself with the content and details first.
  • Decide on particular things to improve. Do you struggle with nerves or anxiety when speaking in public? Or are you more concerned with how to tell a cohesive story? If there’s a particular skill you want to improve through a training course, figure this out ahead of time so you can search for courses that address that particular concern.
  • Consider what type of speaking you are doing. Are you looking to improve your networking, pitch for investment, do a TED talk or keynote speech or run weekly meetings? Understanding the type of speaking engagements you are planning can help you choose the right course.
  • Consider the time commitment. You will be able to complete some courses in a matter of days. Others might require weeks or even months. Consider the amount of time you have to devote to a course. It might also be helpful to see which courses allow you to pause and return at a later date and which ones expire.

If you have questions when evaluating a course, don’t hesitate to reach out to the organizers or company that runs it. They can provide clarity and possibly make your decision easier. And remember – there’s no magic spell that will make you a great public speaker overnight. You’ll need to work hard and supplement these courses with preparation and practice time.

6 public speaking training courses to take in 2024

There are more options for public speaking training courses than ever before. From in-depth courses for experienced professionals to easy-to-digest classes that are perfect for beginners, these six best public speaking training courses are the cream of the crop.

Courses for professionals

Professionals have a host of options when selecting a public speaking training course. Typically, professionals will have mastered the basics required to be effective public speakers. They are now looking for ways to elevate their presence onstage or communicate their message more efficiently.

TED’s Official Public Speaking Course (TED Masterclass)

Ted’s Official Public Speaking Course, which is available on YouTube Courses, aims to teach you how to identify, develop and share your ideas.

This masterclass will also help you become a more effective communicator overall. You’ll learn how to explain complex ideas with precision and establish a connection with listeners.

At less than $20, this course is cost-effective as well as comprehensive.

Pip Decks Storyteller Tactics

For business storytelling techniques that can help you influence and inspire those around you, choose the Storyteller Tactics Card Deck by Pip Decks.

Any professional can use this deck of high-quality cards to pitch ideas, persuade clients and present and tell their brand story. Great public speaking is all about great storytelling, and with Storyteller Tactics, you’ll learn how to clarify your message and get closer to people.

Courses for beginners

Getting started as a public speaker is often the most challenging step. Managing anxiety and mastering the basics can be helpful for beginners. These courses can help you do just that.

Voice of Influence

Voice of Influence by Rada Business is a live class hosted in London. It gives participants the skills they need to elevate their presence and master the subtle art of connecting with an audience.

The course teaches a variety of techniques, from body language methods to the physiology of the voice. By the end, you’ll understand public speaking from every angle.

Harvard University also offers live public speaking classes for those who need access to a class in the US.

Managing Your Anxiety While Presenting

You don’t need to be an anxious person for nerves to affect you. Many public speakers struggle with performance anxiety.

This LinkedIn Learning course, Managing Your Anxiety While Presenting, features anxiety management techniques. It will help you feel more confident and comfortable in front of your audience.

With easy access to materials through your mobile device and quizzes to help test your knowledge, this course is a solid fit for anyone who has struggled with onstage anxiety.

Courses for students

It’s easy to overlook the basics when mastering public speaking. Even so, students who are just beginning their journey in this skill should pay close attention to the core factors that can make or break a great speech.

Communication skills are the number one skill employers seek. The earlier you start building your speaking skills, the better.

Public Speaking Foundations

LinkedIn Learning first released their Public Speaking Foundations course in 2018. The creators recently updated it to include even more supplementary materials and recommendations.

This course covers how to manage anxiety while presenting, how to outline a speech, how to take questions and much more. It presents the information in simple terms, making it a great introductory class for students or anyone who is new to public speaking.

Dynamic Public Speaking

Coursera is one of the most highly respected educational websites around. Try their Dynamic Public Speaking course to increase your confidence, master delivery techniques and dive into tips for storytelling and topic framing. You’ll receive guidance from an experienced instructor.

Public speaking training: other approaches

If you can’t find the right course or you’re looking for a more tailored solution, you can also work with a public speaking coach.

A public speaking coach can help you build your talks for specific engagements and work with you to tackle your individual goals and anxieties.


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