How to Fail as a Professional Public Speaker – the Seven Habits of Highly Unsuccessful Speakers

I work with professional speakers, people aspiring to become professional speakers, speakers on the way up, and all the variants in between.  There are as many stories about their roads to success as there are individuals.  And yes, of course, the road to success goes through the swamp of failure and frustration before it gets [...]

How to Get Hired as a Speaker in 2014


Most speakers who market their services are going about it in the wrong way.  Start from the idea that the fee-paying world is overloaded with information, marketing claims, ideas, cute kitten videos, and a thousand demands on everyone’s time from family, friends, co-workers and people asking for money for good causes. The easiest path for [...]

You Have to Focus


I wrote in an earlier post about the importance of making choices to a successful public career.  More bad news:  once you choose, you have to focus.  Specifically, in three essential ways. First, you have to focus on creating speaking opportunities.  But not in the way that you think.  Because professional speakers have the opportunity [...]

Finding Your Voice on Social Media – Passionate Expression or TMI?

Decordova MA Hearts

Like public speaking, social media is instant. It happens live and in real-time. It’s ‘public’ and what you say is recorded and easily shareable. Your social media updates are also public remarks – just like your keynote address. So not only is it really important that you create a voice that conveys your brand message, [...]

How Much Should You Charge For A Speech?

Paid Public Speaking

Professional speaking can be a highly lucrative business.  Because it can be, it is also highly competitive.  It’s not easy to break into the ranks of the best-paid speakers, and the expectations are very high for those who do. Where do you fit in?  I’ve posted many times about how the speaking business works and [...]

Social Media Rules for Leaders and Business Executives


By Emma Wyatt Its no secret that social media is a useful tool for leadership development. CEO’s and business leaders have celebrity status and often feature in the media. We want to know them, and feel like they are accessible. Social media provides an opportunity for leaders to create a personal brand and interact directly with [...]

What You Need Behind the Scenes: Speaker Support for a Successful Public Speaking Career

Back office for professional speaker

By the time a professional speaker takes the stage, gives an engaging, relevant keynote address, and leaves to thunderous applause, a lot of things have had to happen in order to prepare that success.  Every speaker needs a great deal of support, beyond the speech itself, the great delivery, and everything that happens on the [...]

Are you too old to be a professional speaker?

Paid public speaking often seems like a great second career idea for people who have achieved something worth talking about in their first career.  But if you’ve got the kids through college and you’ve sold your company or launched your clothing line or cured malaria – are you too old, in our youth-obsessed culture – [...]

Speaking as a Career, the Importance of Rehearsal, and Rodolphe Dutel


Entrepreneur and adventurer (I love that self-description) Rodolphe “Rudy” Dutel got in touch with me to help him kick off his new blog on self-improvement, Karma, and yes, adventures.  I think I checked the self-improvement box, since the discussion was all about storytelling, rehearsal, the career of professional speaking, and other public speaking mysteries.  We [...]