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Old 09-11-2013, 11:52 AM
 
70 posts, read 208,232 times
Reputation: 51

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Yesterday I interviewed at a manufacturing company and it seemed like a great opportunity - the job description matched exactly what I like to do most in my current position and I was very excited. But then the interviewer asked me about my presentation skills, which I honestly said needed improvement. I asked her if presenting was required since it wasn't on the job description. She then mentioned they wanted the person in this position to do company-wide presentations on the performance of their products on a regular basis (the company is 200-300 people large). This seems like a pretty big responsibility, why wouldn't it be listed in the job description?!

Anyway, I was quite a bit discouraged after this. I absolutely hate public speaking and ironically applied for this job because I thought it wouldn't be required. Currently, I have to present weekly performance reports and marketing campaigns to my client. This has only gotten more stressful because the team is growing and more people join the meetings I have to lead.

Some of you may mention to look into Toastmasters to get over my fear (as mentioned in this post Careers that do not involve public speaking and low stress?). I've already looked into this but here's the thing: I do fine speaking in front of people I know I won't regularly see, but it's so much different when it comes to colleagues and peers. I use propranolol to avoid going into a complete anxiety attack when I'm presenting, but the stress I feel leading up to it is the worst.

It's unfortunate because I am a very smart person who works well with large sets of numbers, troubleshooting any discrepancies and analyzing data. I can put my ideas down on paper well, but I'm just a horrible presenter. Why can't I just give my findings to someone else to talk about?!
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Old 09-11-2013, 11:55 AM
 
Location: The Berk in Denver, CO USA
14,038 posts, read 20,362,290 times
Reputation: 22811
Default Because

Quote:
Originally Posted by elletee View Post
Why can't I just give my findings to someone else to talk about?!
Because you are the SME.
Ditch the drugs and take some speaking classes.
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Old 09-11-2013, 11:59 AM
 
Location: San Francisco Bay Area
12,598 posts, read 15,066,993 times
Reputation: 12144
Sometimes, not every task is listed in a job description.
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Old 09-11-2013, 12:26 PM
 
70 posts, read 208,232 times
Reputation: 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by davebarnes View Post
Because you are the SME.
Ditch the drugs and take some speaking classes.
At my current company, we have an analytics contact that pulls reporting data for my team and I am the one to present it. He sits in on the meetings and only contributes when I am faced with a question I can't answer (which never happens). I've already looked into moving into a position similar to his at my job but to no avail. At the company I recently interviewed at, the description said "support internal marketing team" which I assumed would be the same deal - I pull it, they present it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ccm123 View Post
Sometimes, not every task is listed in a job description.
I understand that job duties are subject to change and don't always match the original description. However, I feel like this is a pretty big expectation they neglected to mention. This not some once a year meeting with a small team, this is a monthly company-wide presentation. Also, yesterday was my third interview at this company and no one else I met with mentioned this as part of their requirements.
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Old 09-11-2013, 12:56 PM
 
Location: San Francisco Bay Area
12,598 posts, read 15,066,993 times
Reputation: 12144
I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but companies pull the "bait and switch" all the time. You are fortunate you found out during the interview process (before you accepted the job and resigned from your old one).

I interviewed at a start-up once and was painted a "beautiful picture" of how excellent the work environment was, how good the management was, etc. I accepted the job. After 2 days there, I knew I was lied to, but ended up sticking it out for months.

You can still not move any further with the interviewing process at this point.

Quote:
Originally Posted by elletee View Post
I understand that job duties are subject to change and don't always match the original description. However, I feel like this is a pretty big expectation they neglected to mention. This not some once a year meeting with a small team, this is a monthly company-wide presentation. Also, yesterday was my third interview at this company and no one else I met with mentioned this as part of their requirements.
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Old 09-11-2013, 03:28 PM
 
Location: Vermont
10,309 posts, read 11,227,747 times
Reputation: 14194
You may be making a mistake if you pass on this job because of the public speaking requirement. Not only are you saying, in essence, that you are unwilling to learn a skill that is needed for this job, it's something that is either necessary or very useful for lots of jobs.

I say this as one who was once painfully shy and terrified of public speaking, but it's kind of hard to be a trial lawyer with those impediments. I spent many years writing out everything--literally every word--I was going to say, but with practice, and with the effort to speak in public whenever the opportunity presented itself, I got to the point where I could be very successful at it.

If you do this now it is likely to benefit you in the long run.
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Old 09-12-2013, 12:35 PM
 
Location: West Coast
1,199 posts, read 2,195,483 times
Reputation: 2098
If you can learn a skill that most people refuse to do, you will be create incredible value for yourself and any company that you work for. Most adults fear public speaking and avoid it at all costs. As a result, many miss out on so many opportunities. Don't focus on all of the presentations you have to do. Just focus on one presentation at a time. Prepare for it, practice it, and learn from it. One of the best ways to prepare is present something in front of people you know, and have them critique you. Also, video record yourself practicing a presentation. Public speaking is a learned skill. Any skill requires practice to become proficient.
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Old 09-12-2013, 02:20 PM
 
2,839 posts, read 4,992,756 times
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Sometimes HR doesn't always get the duties part correctly. Or even the job title.
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Old 09-12-2013, 02:50 PM
 
7,422 posts, read 13,718,175 times
Reputation: 4944
yeah, sometimes, especially at bigger places, hiring managers are forced to use generic job descriptions that don't really describe the job.

at the hospital where i used to work, every administrative assistant job at each level had the same description, but in actuality we all did very different things depending on our departments. i've noticed that same practice in other large entities i've applied for (big companies and schools). sometimes there's a spot where the hiring manager can put more specific info, but sometimes there's not. and sometimes when there is, they don't use it.

we also had this one position where the description they posted was for a completely different job. the real job was basically being a unit secretary and receptionist for patients and visitors, answering phones and dealing with paperwork and billing. the description was for the position that cleans, stocks and moves the medical equipment. my boss went to hr so many times saying that this wasn't the right description and was told that yes it was. other hospitals in the system and i think even other units in the hospital had the right description, too.
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Old 09-12-2013, 03:02 PM
 
570 posts, read 1,505,644 times
Reputation: 353
Quote:
Originally Posted by elletee View Post


I understand that job duties are subject to change and don't always match the original description. However, I feel like this is a pretty big expectation they neglected to mention. This not some once a year meeting with a small team, this is a monthly company-wide presentation. Also, yesterday was my third interview at this company and no one else I met with mentioned this as part of their requirements.
because that's probably not your primary job responsibility. 12 times a year not your main job. Someone has to do it. They are not going to hire people to just do that one task every month. They probably just forget to put it on the job descriptions.

I work in IT, my job never mention anything about presentation either. I still have to do presentation to show our software products.
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