I just finished watching the Netflix documentary on Hillary Clinton. There are so many things I want to write about it, but let’s start with this gem from her Director of Communications who, when offered advice over and over on what Hillary should change—what she should sound like, the kinds of words she should use, how to modulate her voice—she’d ask for an example of a woman on the world stage who does it perfectly.
“If you could tell her a woman on the world stage who does it perfectly, then she could emulate that person. No one ever had an answer for who that woman is.”
As a woman, there is a reason you don’t feel at home when you’re speaking publicly. A big part of it is simply that throughout history we’ve been inundated with examples of one specific type of man with a deep voice who gets the “great public speaker” label. We simply need more and more examples of women who speak publicly and are celebrated for it. Every time a woman speaks from the world stage—or any podium—our brains get another example to shift our expectations.
The next example might as well be you.