Public Speaking in 2022: What to Expect & How to Prepare

Here are a few phrases I’m sure you got sick of hearing in 2021: 

  • “_______ is going to look a little different this year.”
  • “Can you all see my screen?” 
  • “You’re on mute.”

This was the vocabulary of the virtual meeting. But there was one phrase that broke my heart more than all the rest…

“I come off a lot better in person.”

I heard some version of this refrain at almost every virtual event I attended. 

And look, I don’t disagree! I think most of us come off better in person. Something is always lost when we can’t make direct eye-contact with the person we’re speaking to. 

But here’s the thing… virtual events aren’t going anywhere. 

Many of us have accepted this in the short term. We figure events will probably remain virtual while omicron and/or other variants are surging.

But I believe things have changed in a more fundamental and long-term way. 

People have realized that many of the meetings, classes, events on their schedule could be done remotely. 

Consequently, many have moved to areas with lower costs of living, or are unwilling to expend the amount of time/energy that they used to in order to attend in-person events.   

So, what do we do with that information? 

The choice is simple: You can lament the change or you can skill up. 

This isn’t a new problem.

In 1960, Richard Nixon and John F. Kennedy participated in the first televised presidential debate in American history. 

While most radio listeners considered the debate a draw or declared Nixon the victor, a large majority of the 70 million television viewers thought Kennedy had won. 


Because Kennedy knew how to embrace the medium and Nixon did not. 

Kennedy looked directly into the camera as he spoke, connecting with the audience at home. Nixon, by contrast, kept directing his answers to the reporters on the sidelines which made him look shifty and indirect on screen. 

I see this exact thing happen during virtual presentations all the time. 

Seasoned presenters, who know exactly how to command a boardroom, suddenly have no idea how to behave on screen. 

If that sounds like you, please do not despair! 

There is NO shame in this. 

We are all “better in person.”

But here’s where you get to make a decision…

You can shrug and say, “I’m not great on Zoom. Once we’re back in-person, I’ll be in my element.”

Or, you can accept that virtual meetings aren’t going anywhere, and you can say, “I want to be more dynamic on screen. Let me learn the skills to do that.”

Because the good news is this… Charisma isn’t something people are just born with. It’s all just technique. And that means it’s learnable. 

If you’re ready to skill up in 2022, I invite you to set up a complimentary Public Speaking Strategy Session with me. 

During this 30min phone call, we’ll get super clear on what your public speaking goals are for 2022 and come up with a step-by-step plan to get you there. 

Given the right tools and techniques, I guarantee you can command the room in 2022. 

Any room.

Whether it’s a courtroom, a boardroom, or, you guessed it, even a Zoom room ;)

Photograph of Sara Glancy on stairs
Headshot by Jessica Osber.

Sara Glancy is an NYC-based actor and public speaking coach and the founder of Speak Masterfully, a service that helps professionals take the stage with less fear and more fun! 

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