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How to Give a Career Perspective Speech

by Lisa McQuerrey, studioD

If you're asked to discuss your career perspective with a student group or business or industry organization, audience members will be interested in hearing a wide range of information about your chosen profession. Be enthusiastic and encouraging in your speech and start off by describing what initially attracted you to your line of work. Tailor the language of your presentation to your audience, using simple terms for students and industry jargon with business professionals.


Students will especially be interested in learning about the degree, credentials of training necessary for a job in your field. Provide an overview of classes or courses of study, internships, job shadowing and other training necessary to your position. Outline how long the typical educational process takes, and if you're willing, share the overall cost of your education. If you’re talking to business professionals, emphasize continuing education and professional development seminars you’ve taken to stay at the top of your field.

Related Fields

Provide information about the various types of jobs in your field. For example, if you're in marketing, related jobs might include advertising, public relations, promotions, graphic design, writing and editing. This gives your audience a bigger picture of your profession. Explain how jobs in these related fields work in tandem with one another. Use real-life examples to demonstrate your points.

Job Responsibilities

Describe what an average day is like in your business. Your audience wants to hear what type of tasks and duties you handle, the type of people you work with, whether you travel and what the greatest challenges and rewards are in your position. If you've worked in a variety of related roles, describe the differences between jobs, for example, working for a large company versus a small company. Share anecdotes from your own experiences to help audience members relate.

Earning Potential

Explain what the salary outlook is for your line of work, whether your industry is growing or shrinking, sharing job growth statistics, if possible. Students, in particular, will be interested in salary ranges for your line of work. If you're not comfortable sharing your own financial picture, cite information from the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Outlook Handbook, which gives an overview of average salary ranges nationwide. Emphasize that earning potential varies based on the size of the company you work for, your experience and education.

Industry Trends

Talk to business professionals about emerging trends in your industry. Discuss how changes in the economy or advances in technology impact your career. If there are challenges facing your industry, describe them and explain what they mean from your perspective, and that of your company. Be prepared to take questions from the group following your presentation.

About the Author

Lisa McQuerrey has been a business writer since 1987. In 1994, she launched a full-service marketing and communications firm. McQuerrey's work has garnered awards from the U.S. Small Business Administration, the International Association of Business Communicators and the Associated Press. She is also the author of several nonfiction trade publications, and, in 2012, had her first young-adult novel published by Glass Page Books.

Photo Credits

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