Speaking is a gift… for some
Speaking is a gift… for some. And having been running a speaker bureau for 25 years this May 2017, I’ve recently come to the conclusion that some speakers just shouldn’t be… erm, well; speakers! Not all speakers have the speaking gift.
Now, to make an informed decision rather than an assumption, keep reading.
As I said, I started the speaker agency 25 years ago, while running another business which I then sold. I researched it for two years until I decided to flat out go for it and focus on what I was passionate about.
I strongly recommend that you always seek out something you are passionate about.
Inspiring the world is mine, which means during the bad times you can inspire yourself to keep going.
However, loving what I do, doesn’t prevent me from having certain fears and anxieties about some of the speakers I meet.
Am I making the right choice for my client? Is this speaker the right person to fulfill this job? Would they reach my client’s audience? Are they going to be downright outstanding and show expertise in their field? Do they deserve the trust of this audience?
Over the years I have learned that the truly special speakers recognise some very key points. They understand what a speaking gift is all about.
They have slowed down enough to understand their profession. They have listened to their clients and audiences alike and heard the gentle nuances they will never forget; turning them into tremendous speakers.
You see many, not all, speakers are selfish.
They put themselves out there to be adored and receive their round of applause.
They are missing the biggest lesson of all… it is not all about you.
This is not about how smart you are, not about how eloquent you are, not about how funny you are.
It is about your audience, not about you.
How do you and your client want to leave them? In what way can you inspire them? What is it about this audience that can encourage you to become a better speaker?
In your speaker journey, at whatever level you are at, and for each event that you attend; these questions must be answered for you to deliver the better part of yourself for that audience.
It is for that time; that place; a marriage is created between two parties, a give-give relationship.
We live in what I call the ‘smash and grab’. A ‘throw away’ culture. Instant gratification city. I want it now, instant adoration. The quick fix.
In speaker terms, the easy gain. Easiest pictures, videos, websites, quickest notes dotted in to a usual speech.
‘It’s not about me. What can I give to this event, this client, this audience?’
The speakers who phone up and ask that question thrill me. And it is of no surprise they are usually astonishing to listen to. A mile apart from many speakers out there, because they are willing to travel an extra mile in their preparation.
It is also of no surprise that by going the marginally longer way round, taking the time to hear your client; the rewards and applause at the end are of greater significance.
Who knows, you may be asked to grow your relationship with them. Now that feels much more gratifying. That feels like a speaking gift.