Fear of public speaking ranks among Americans' top terrors, some surveys say
, surpassing fear of flying, terrorism, and often even death itself. Amazing, right?
So you’ve got a seriously handy career skill if you love the limelight or the rush of making speeches in front of hundreds or even thousands of people.
Ready to put your public speaking prowess to work? Check out these crowd-pleasing careers.
You’ll get plenty of time in front of cameras and crowds as a spokesperson or press secretary. Whether you’re working for a politician, an organization or a celebrity, you make sure public announcements are delivered in the most appropriate fashion possible.
Your goal? Maximize positive coverage.
Average salary: $31,000 – $95,000
Enjoy the privilege of public speaking on a daily basis as a college professor.
However, beware that this might be one of the tougher gigs on the list. Not only do you write and produce most of your own material, you work for a tricky audience: your words must engage even the sleepiest college freshman.
Average salary: $30,000 – $129,000
True, as a speech writer you don’t actually give the speeches yourself. But you must know the subtle science of how to rouse an audience, build a speech that can motivate hundreds, and tack on that perfect finishing line.
Without ever getting near a podium, you’re still the expert on the ultimate version of crowd control.
Average salary: $31,000 – $95,000
You deliver the news to hundreds, thousands or even millions of viewers. In this center-stage job, you’re responsible for accurate, appropriate and concise delivery on every broadcast.
Plus, you’re expected to keep your cool—and sometimes even improvise—when reporting on breaking news. No pressure, right?
Average salary: $28,000 – $146,000
From your first campaign speech to your last address on legislation, your job as a politician is full of connecting with crowds. In fact, public speaking is an essential skill in this role: a good speech can make or break a political career.
What’s more, your turns of persuasive phrase can be vital for bringing about the change you want to see in the world.
Average salary: Highly varied
As a pastor, priest, minister or any other religious leader, a major part of your work is to inspire those around you through spoken words. During a service, you give rousing speeches, offer inspirational ideas, and read out religious texts for all to hear.
This means you’ve got a lot of responsibility: People come from miles around to hear you speak and grow their spiritual understanding, so you’ve got to be on your game 24/7.
Average salary: $24,000 – $77,000
Motivational speaker takes the cake as the ultimate crowd-pleasing career. Using your voice, energy and charisma, you get up on stage to inspire people to change their lives—whether by finding love, finishing their novel or simply transforming their outlook.
In this role, you are the master of working a group so that each and every person feels like you’re speaking directly to them.
Average salary: $23,000 – $86,000
All salary data comes from the US Department of Labor.
Are you a crowd pleaser? What public speaking roles would you add to the list?
Annie Favreau works for Inside Jobs, a career exploration site that helps people discover a career they’ll love and build strong, successful futures. Join the conversation @InsideJobs!