Some Advice for Speaking at The Top of Your Career
One of the greatest pleasures reported by the “top-pins” in any MLM organisation is having the ability to share the secrets that have helped them succeed. Reaching this position is repeatedly stated as a career highlight.
Sharing these secrets occurs in many settings. These include one-on-one sessions, group trainings, or just simply over a coffee. But one of the most exciting ways for these speakers to share their ideas is during the big conventions! If this is one of your goals, being prepared to “WOW” over 1000 people takes some preplanning.
If you are in the position of being approached to speak at a convention, try some of the secrets below to make your session not only easier to deliver, but more interesting for your audience.
Get comfortable with your environment
The best way to get comfortable on stage is to spend time on it! The night before you are scheduled to speak, arrange to spend as much time on stage as possible. Aim for 2-3 hours. While on stage, practice your presentation. If there are wait staff in the room setting up, practice to them. If possible, get wired up with the mic. This will let you know if there are any “dead spots”, and any feedback problems.
Walk around the stage and get the feel for what it is like. Does the stage creak? Check for spots in the audience where visibility is reduced. Will there be lights shining right in your eyes? Will you be under a spot light? Lie down on the stage and relax if you want to. Do what ever it takes to make you feel at home.
Write your own introduction
Have you ever been blown away by the introduction to a speaker? After hearing the introduction, you feel as though you have already benefited! These introductions don’t happen by accident. They are carefully written and crafted, over and over again. Then they are given to the introducing host to be read word-for-word. Be very clear on this; just read it as it is written. Make the font at least size 18, and no more than 3?4 of a page long.
What do you include?
Anything that is relevant. This is not the time to be modest. Include what you have achieved and the obstacles you faced. This is your sales pitch to the audience. And remember, someone else will be reading it, and most people won’t have realised that you wrote it yourself.
Get there early and mingle
If possible, get to meet members of the audience before you step up to speak. Find out from them what the convention has been like if you have missed any of it. Then, work this information into your presentation. This will boost your credibility to new heights.
Contact other speakers before the convention:
Get a list of the other speakers that will also be attending the convention. Call them and find out what they will be speaking about. There is nothing more deflating than to find out that you have the same message as last night’s keynote speaker! This is also a great way to network for other speaking engagements.
Use your own stories: We have all heard the story of the guy on the beach throwing the starfish back into the ocean. Yes, he was making a difference, but big deal! If you come out with a story that the audience has heard elsewhere, you will not be forgiven.
To this end, do not use generic stories from “story books” or off the Internet. They have all done the rounds and are just as likely to have been sent to the audience as part of a chain e-mail the week before. Make your stories relevant to your message, and don’t tell them for your own benefit. You don’t have to tell the audience how good you are; after all they are listening to you!
Get a recording of your presentation
As part of your agreement to speak, get a CD recording of your presentation. This will serve as a great marketing tool for your future engagements. It is also a great way to earn passive income. They are very simple to reproduce and can be sold from the back of the room (with permission of the event organiser). However, never mention it from on-stage — get the host to mention it for you.
Find out what the wait staff will be doing If you are giving a keynote speech, or a speech after a meal, find out when the wait staff will be clearing the tables. If possible, get them to either clear the tables before or after your presentation. If you have people clearing the tables, no matter how quiet they are, there will always be noise and the audience will be distracted. This will reduce your power as a speaker. You owe it to your audience to ensure that they can learn from you.
Get it in writing
When you are approached to present at a convention, make sure your agreement to speak is in writing. This is important for a number of reasons. Firstly you can cover many of the “logistical’ aspects; if you need a projector, make sure it is in your “contract” and who is responsible for providing it. The last thing that you need is to turn up on the day and have to change your presentation because you don’t have the necessary equipment.
You can also put in the information about getting a recording of your presentation, what the wait staff will be doing, and permission to sell products. This will ensure that both parties understand what is happening and how it will happen.