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I was WRONG!

A Large Audience is BETTER!

Some consider the “Fear of Public Speaking” somewhat analogous to the “Fear of Heights.”

Example:  I can stand on a stool, step stool, or folding ladder and have no fear. However, climbing an extension ladder that reaches the gutters on my two story home – I’ve done it, but don’t enjoy it. If I had to go higher, I wouldn’t even try.

In a similar vein, many people can talk, with no fear, one-on-one or to several people at a time. As the size of that group grows, many find the “Fear of Public Speaking” creeps in. In theory, I agree with this.

One of the problems with speaking to very small audiences is that you can become too comfortable.

It’s possible to get a false sense of security and think, “I’ve got this! I can get in front of any group and deliver a great presentation.”

That “sense of comfort” you thought you had, can come back and bite you when given an important “Speaking Opportunity!” to a larger group, that could potentially help your business or career.

Standing in front of many people, and having all those eyeballs focused on you, could easily take you way out of your comfort zone. The goal you set for your talk may not have the impact you wanted, or worse.

As our delivery and confidence improves, a larger crowd presents advantages.

  1. Audience members are much more reserved in their emotions in smaller groups.

  2. They are less likely to laugh out loud, cheer, or applaud vigorously if they are one of few in your audience.

  3. There is a dynamic to large groups that brings out the intimidation many feel when in smaller groups.

  4. Have you ever gone to a movie matinee when the theater only had a half dozen people? Not as much fun vs. a full theatre, is it?

  5. As a speaker, I like to connect with individuals in the audience through eye contact. 

  6. Even though I can’t do this with everyone in a large group, those observing my facial expressions, gestures, and body movements will GET my intent.

  7. In an audience of only a few, the connection is different. Some people don’t want a lot of eye contact and feel uncomfortable. That can be awkward for both of us.

  8. When delivering my talks, I like to “take the temperature of the audience.”

  9. I love seeing heads nodding and approving my message, but because I always want to improve, folks shaking their heads in disagreement, or those with a confused expression on their face, let me know they are not GETTING IT! and I need to make some changes.

  10. Larger audiences give more feedback.

  11. More attendees usually means more diversity and people with different perspectives. I like that!

  12. Some are not going to agree with points I’m making, and that’s OK.

  13. With smaller groups, and less diversity, messages to and from audience members don’t have the same feeling for either of us.

  14. Also, with a larger audience, it’s easier to move on to people who agree, or question my points. I want both.

  15. For Q&A, more is better.

  16. The result is usually more questions from attendees and a more vigorous discussion of those questions, with everyone, including the speaker, learning something.

Get out of your Comfort Zone and make it Larger!

Do that, and I guarantee your presentations, in front of small and larger audiences, will be – NO SWEAT!


Three ways to keep the attention of your audience.

About Fred E. Miller Fred E. Miller is a speaker, an international coach, and the author of the books, “NO SWEAT Public Speaking!” and “NO SWEAT Elevator Speech!”

Businesses, Individuals, and Organizations hire him because they want to improve their Networking, Public Speaking, and Presentation Skills.

They do this because they know: Speaking Opportunities are Business, Career, and Leadership Opportunities.

They also know: We perceive really great speakers to be Experts. We like to work with Experts.

He shows them how to: Develop, Practice, and Deliver Fantastic Presentations! with – NO SWEAT!



  1. Lessening The Fear of Public Speaking with – NO SWEAT!

  2. Speaking Opportunities are Business, Career, and Leadership Opportunities.

  3. We are All Self-Employed!

Subscribe to my YouTube ChannelPodcast Channel, and connect with me on LinkedIn and Facebook.

My books can be purchased on NO SWEAT Public Speaking” NO SWEAT Elevator Speech!”

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