There’s no denying it: Today’s kids and teenagers are sailing past the older generations in terms of their technological knowledge and abilities. A child as young as three or four years old can master a computer mouse or a touch screen in no time.
When it comes to public speaking, though, most kids are inexperienced. It’s no surprise, since this generation of teens, especially, is more used to texting and instant messaging to stay in touch. Face-to-face interaction is in danger of being replaced by virtual communication via smartphones and social media sites.
What does this mean for the future of the economy, when the ability to make public presentations and speeches is a key factor in the success of certain businesses? According to a recent CBS Moneywatch article, “Few things make as much lead generation sense for sales people as public speaking. Your prospects get to see you and hear you sharing expertise without any risk on their part.”
So there are clear economic advantages for those with good speaking skills, and there are plenty of resources for adults to learn public speaking. As teens get ready to enter the workforce, regardless of the fields they choose, they also need to be equipped with good communications skills.
Some innovative organizations are focusing on teaching kids now, in order to help the future economy overall by promoting individual success in their careers. A UK company called Public Speaking for Kids, for example, encourages kids to learn public speaking, both in school and at home with help from their parents.
Once they develop helpful skills such as speaking clearly and practicing good body language, kids and teens will have the abilities they need to deliver effective speeches in any situation.
With the help of an iPad and a public speaking app (shameless plug alert-such as the soon to be released Podium Pro), they can have everything they need at their fingertips. A lot of kids are already practicing speaking without really thinking of it as “work” or something the parents made them do. YouTube has brought speaking skills out of many people in their quest to post something funny or informative online in hopes it goes viral. It’s great practice, especially when you watch your video and see how you speak. No kids want to sound or look uncool, so they will practice and practice until they feel comfortable putting it out there for all the world to see. Creating a document or notes for a speech is very convenient on the iPad. No awkward leafing through papers or struggling with outdated media equipment.
Using a public speaking app can be a real confidence booster, at any age.