A potential client said to me the other day, “We had a motivational speaker last year. Funny Motivational SpeakerShouldn’t we have something different?”

I was insulted. I mean, I am different! (Ask my wife!)  I’m a motivational speaker, so I’m also biased.  But for some really good reasons!  Of course clients want something different. Everybody wants the newest, most “in” thing; the presentation, keynote or performance that everyone’s talking about.

But just because you had motivation last year, you think your employees never need motivation again? Don’t tell that to Winston Churchill, or the President for that matter. If one dose of motivation was all anybody needed during a lifetime, parents, schoolteachers, bosses, presidents and prime ministers would all be out of business. People need constant motivation. Every day is a new opportunity to motivate someone, or the same one.


The trick to motivation, of course, is to keep your people motivated. How do you do that? Well, my own patented brand of motivation is all about humor. Getting people to laugh while at the same time motivating them to engage in their jobs, in their work place, in their work mates is the glue that makes the lesson stick. I use everything I can think of to make people laugh, lighten up and realize that the work-place has the potential to be a positive, upbeat place for personal growth and outstanding employee performance. I use:

  • jokes,
  • tricks,
  • team-building games,
  • heck, I even use animal balloons and confetti.

If balloons and confetti are what it takes to motivate people and make them smile, I use them.

And while having people laugh and lighten up does lead to short-term motivation and productivity increases, how can we make it last for the long haul? The short answer? Regular doses of daily or weekly motivation.  I provide my clients with information, techniques, props and more to keep the motivation going. It’s like a booster shot. You bring Brad in for the big, bad dose of supercharged, high energy, lightening bolt motivation, and then have your people check in on a regular basis for some updates.

Do they need some encouragement in dealing with that pesky co-worker who won’t stop complaining? Click on a video segment of Brad talking about how to deal with miserable people.

Is their boss going through a rough patch at home which is spilling over into the workplace? Break out the motivational toys and gadgets specifically designed to bring some levity and perspective into the office or break room.

A massive change coming down the pike that your people are nervous about? They may need to read a chapter in Brad’s book, Humor Me—America’s Funniest Humorists on the Power of Laughter about how stress can be combated through the use of humor. There are so many ways to keep the motivation strong and flowing.

No doubt about it, for the big changes, the big stressors, the big downers Funny motivational speakerthat life dumps on people now and again, sometimes a booster shot isn’t enough. Sometimes a full dose of motivation, encouragement and inspiration is what’s needed. And that’s a fact, regardless of whether you had a motivational speaker last year, last month or last week.

Motivation isn’t just a one-time deal and you’re done. People in all employment situations, in all walks of life, of all personality types need the boost that a great motivational speaker can provide, and they need it more than once a lifetime. They need it regularly.

So for an awesome blast of motivational humor, workplace encouragement, or team-building inspiration, bring in me, motivational speaker Brad Montgomery, and my special brand of upbeat, positive, life-affirming, workplace and employee motivation. It’s what the doctor ordered!

Want to see what it looks like? Check you can check out me doing my motivational speaker thing here:

See the motivational speaker preview on YouTube.

Looking for a motivational speaker for your event? Contact me here.

Brad Montgomery
Motivational Speaker, Frequent Shower-Taker

I just had a really interesting conversation with a client who knows I’m a motivational speaker, but is worried that I’m too funny.  She loves me, she says.  Thinks I’d be the perfect business speaker.  But because her organization is going through some REALLY tough times, she’s afraid that if her people actually enjoy learning from me, she’ll get push back from her boss.

She basically asked me to justify myself.  Which I took to be a great exercise.  I decided to ask you what YOU think.   Would this convince you?

Thanks XXXXX,
You asked me to write up a bit about why investing in a happiness speaker who is funny would be a good investment for you.   Here are some of the things we talked about on the phone:

• Most people (and organizations) have happiness backwards.  They think that “when things get better” we will be more happy.   But social scientists have proved that happy people (and happy organizations) perform WAY better than their unhappy counterparts.  Therefore, investing in making happiness LEADS to better performance.  (Not the other way around.)

It sounds to me that things have been tough for you folks;  now is the time to invest in helping people perform at their best.

•  According to Harvard, (and dozens of other studies) happy people are more creative, more innovative, more resilient, better leaders, better team members, healthier, sell more, and are more accurate than their less-happy counterparts.

•  Often organizations wait until “Things are good” until they invest in their people’s attitudes and culture.  This is a mistake.  Organizations who are suffering the most (due to the economy or any other circumstance) are the very organizations WHO CANNOT AFFORD NOT to invest in happiness.

•  Brad (that’s me!) is very funny on purpose.  Audiences tune out when they see 149 PowerPoint slides, and a boring presentation telling them to “Really get to work because times are tough.”   I use humor and laughter as a tool;  I know — because I’ve done this for everybody from the Federal Government to Lockheed to Microsoft to associations all across the country — that people learn best when they are enjoying themselves. They listen.  They learn.  They adapt and change.  So I use humor as a tool to make this message stick.

Organizations who don’t want a speaker because he is funny are missing the point.  They should choose a speaker with a relevant and needed message who has a proven method of delivering that message in a way that their people will actually hear and learn from.   I have a strong business message.  I deliver it in a way that people connect with and learn from;  It just turns out that my method includes laughter.

Of course I’d love to work with you.  And from what I understand, I think your people could really use an outside perspective like mine;  they can use a message that gives them the tools to perform at their very best.  But I know some organizations are more comfortable with industry speakers, tradition and doing thing they way they have been done for years.  Of course if you choose that route, I’ll be disappointed.

But if you’re ready to work with a proven speaker who can deliver a valuable message about how we can take control of our attitudes and our happiness — and that if we can do that we CAN improve our bottom line results— I’d love to be considered.


Brad Montgomery

What do YOU think?  Do you think it’s absolute crap to book a speaker who makes your group laugh when times are tough?   (Or is it the opposite: that booking a VERY funny speaker to help your people get a handle on the attitudes in order to move forward is a great idea?)


Looking for a motivational speaker for your event? Contact me here.
leave a comment

Here’s some not very surprising news: turns out when social scientists study what impact a person has on a team, a negative person has a negative impact on the group. This means if you add a negative person to your team, Negative Nellie Olsen is able to pull the team down. Remember Little House on the Prairie?  Laura never would have gotten in half the trouble she did, but for Nellie Olsen. Nellie’s negativity managed to ruin all kinds of things for Laura, until Pa put her straight. (How many think Michael Landon was a stupid casting choice for Pa? Where’s the beard?  Where’s the twinkling blue eyes? And what’s with the California salon tan and the permed hair? I know, I know, he was the producer, so he got the starring role. But still…)

Anyway, the opposite is also true. The addition of a positive person to the team brings the whole team up. Positive Pollyanna is a winner! A young girl, Pollyanna Whittier, brings an entire town in Vermont to gladness. If you don’t believe me, read the book or see the Disney movie. (Pollyanna, by Eleanor H. Porter, pub. 1913; Disney film, released 1960, starring Hayley Mills. (Don’t you just love Hayley Mills?  The Parent Trap; The Flame Trees of Thika. I thought she was in Born Free, but that was someone else. Don’t you just love the internet? No wonder it takes me so long to write these blog posts.)

One small bummer—apparently Negative Nellie has a greater impact on the team than Positive Pollyanna does. I don’t know, though. I think Pollyanna could take Nellie Olsen in a smackdown. Nellie is a wuss!

So who do you want to be? Optimistic yet tough Pollyanna? Or whiny, wussy Nellie Olsen? What impact do you want to have on your organization? On your marriage, family, work situation, wine club, or swim team? All are organizations, all are teams, and all are affected by Pollyannas and Nellies.

The way I see it, is you have three choices:

  • Choosing to be negative. Who would do that? Who wakes up wanting to bring everyone down? Yet there are people who are vortexes of negative energy. Psychic vampires as a friend of mine calls them. Is this a conscious choice made by these Nellies, or is their attitude taken by accident or years of habit? One can only hope it’s accidental. (See my blog about Attitude Adjustment for more information about choosing your attitude)

  • A net zero impact. Meaning, a person is neither negative nor positive, or that their positivity and optimism are equally balanced by their negativity and pessimism. They are in “Equilibrium.” (Remember that from High School chemistry? I loved that word—equilibrium. That’s the only thing I loved about chemistry.) Again, I ask you, who picks that? Do we really want to be equally up and equally down, basically a flat line? Not me!

  • A positive impact. (Hint:  Best choice!!) These people leave a positive legacy. Again, this result could often be accidental, but, and here’s the clincher, it doesn’t have to be.

So ask yourself this question: What can I do to make myself a Pollyanna? How can I make my workplace a happier place. Or my family-life happier? Or my life in general?

You know, Pollyanna’s are often viewed pejoratively (now isn’t that a $100 word), meaning that it’s not a complimentary term. “Pollyanna” often refers to someone who’s blithely naïve or unconcerned about just how drastic the particular situation is. But if you look at the original Pollyanna, she’s not this way at all.  Pollyanna decided to be someone who had a positive outlook. She played a game called “The Glad Game,” taught to her by her father, where she would try to turn the most depressing situation into something positive. For example, as a gift she received a pair of crutches (a really crappy gift), but turned it around by finding the good side—how glad she was not to have to use them!

Okay, it seems a little corny in today’s hurly-burly, modern, seriously screwed-up world. But guess what? The world when Pollyanna was written was seriously screwed-up also. It was the eve of World War I. People were uncertain and unsettled. Financial crises were common, money was tight, and recession a reality. Sound familiar?

The problems of today are, frankly, the same problems of yesterday, just the gift-wrap is different. That’s why it’s more important than ever to be a Pollyanna. Make it a conscious choice, like Pollyanna did. Be honest about which accidental group you belong to. Don’t be a flatliner. Especially don’t be a Nellie Olsen, and responsible for locking your group, your family, your workplace in the cellar of misery. (That was a cool movie too—Misery, based on the Stephen King novel. Hayley Mills wasn’t in it.)

Decide to be Pollyanna and lift people up. Call yourself a balloon, if you don’t like calling yourself a Pollyanna.  (Although it’s going to be kind of weird trying to explain why your name-tag says, “Balloon” on it.  Come to think of it, it might be weird answering to “Pollyanna” also, especially if you’re 6’2” and sport a mustache.)

So be a balloon. Choose Pollyanna. Soar with the eagles. Don’t be a Nellie Olsen. Avoid flat-lining. Or think up your own metaphor. You can do it!

Motivational Speaker and Happiness Speaker

Book Brad—He’s a happiness speaker. More importantly, he’s a Pollyanna. If you’re looking for  motivational speaker who speaks about happiness and who gives specific tools and strategies for boosting your psyche, then consider Brad Montgomery, Pollyanna, helium balloon and a genuinely fun and funny guy. He’s the only happiness speaker he knows.

Brad Montgomery
Motivational Humorist Speaker, Happiness Expert, Seminar Leader


Looking for a motivational speaker for your event? Contact me here.

I was recently in Maine speaking for a bank for their annual employee meeting/event.  They charged me with being a motivational speaker specific for the banking and finance industry.   The bottom line, is that like so many of my banking and credit  union clients, they are going through a culture change:  the entire organization is being forced into a culture where they do better than good;  they need to do great.  And along the way they need to make sure that ALL of their financial service offerings are made available to all of their clients all of the time.

Translation:  they are moving to a sales culture.  And they needed me to help them find happiness in this business change.

It was a good time;  and happily it was very well received by the organization and the C-Level folks.  Check out this video:


Looking for a banking or financial services motivational speaker for your event? Need an experienced outside presenter to come in, customize a program, and deliver a motivational speech that will help your people get to where you want them to be?  Contact me here.

Brad Montgomery
Motivational Speaker, Humorist, Seminar Leader

For you folks who prefer to read, here’s the transcript to the video:

It compares absolutely tremendously. We had, everyone was rapt attention throughout the room. We were joking. We only had one person leave the room the whole time. But it was great. Everyone enjoyed Brad’s sense of humor and his sense of humor with a message was really good for us. I’m going to bring a sense of humor to work that I’ve never had the courage to bring.

What the CEO of Kennebunk Savings Bank Has To Say About Brad as a Motivational Speaker

I am Brad Page. I am the President and CEO at Kennebunk Savings Bank and we just had our annual meeting, which we do once a year for all of our employees as a thank you but when we put the meeting together we always try to deliver some sort of message to them. We are going through a lot of change recently with different cultural things that we are trying to do and we were looking for someone to help us facilitate that change in the organization. So we also wanted to do it in a way that everyone would actually pay attention and be interested in it. So Brad had a great balance of humor with what was actually a very strong message at points and inspirational I think for all of our employees and kept their attention and I’m very happy with how the evening turned out. I learned to lead happy. We want our employees to be successful and we know that they can be. Sometimes they need that little bit more of prodding, almost a suck it up message that needs to be delivered, but, you know, you’ve got to be careful how you deliver that message and I think this evening Brad was able to do that using again, his great sense of humor, something everyone could relate to. It wasn’t something everyone turned off. They were waiting to hear what he was going to say next and it wasn’t subliminal but it was a great message delivery and in a way that was not offensive or turning off people. I just think it was a really nice job.

Oh, it was fantastic. It was very entertaining and worthwhile.

I am going to have fun. What did you learn? How to be happy. If you’re not happy it’s not worth showing up.

How to look for the brighter side of life.

We are going to act happy. And what did you learn? Find happy, act happy, leave happy, **** happy.

I’m going to have fun.

What did you learn? How to be happy. If you’re not happy it’s not worth showing up.

He was very entertaining. I liked him a lot.

What did you learn? I learned the biggest thing is that we, the train is moving and we’ve got to get on it so we’ve got to act the right way for the culture because it’s not going to change.

 Three More banking speaker Videos on Youtube
Banking speaker in Indiana
Funny Credit Union Speaker
Speaker for Credit Unions

I recently did some work with a wonderful government audience in California.  They had me do my all day happiness at work seminar called Laugh-O-Nomics™.  We did everything from motivation, to collaboration, to team building and facilitation.  I was there a full day, but it felt like about 90 minutes … It was fun.

Check out this testimonial.


Looking for a happiness motivational speaker for your event? Contact me here.

Brad Montgomery
Team Building Speaker, Humorist, Seminar Leader

For you folks who prefer to read, here’s the transcript to the video:

Sandia National Labs Testimonials

So to anybody that might be looking for a motivational speaker to come out to your event we would highly recommend Brad. He did a fantastic job and I feel like we all left with the feeling that happiness is an attitude and that you choose happiness and I would highly recommend him for any job that you might have.

Brad is a Funny Motivational Speaker

Brad was not only funny and entertaining, he had strong motivational skills. He made sure to speak to people asking what they wanted, what their organization was about, what was important to them. He also turned around and was very interactive with the crowd. Was he dirty? No, he really tried to stay away from that even though he wanted to. He wanted to ****. No, kidding, kidding. He actually paid strong attention to what we needed as an organization.

I think he really helped us understand that we have the choice of whether we want to be happy or not and we need to really focus on taking that happiness with us at home and at work and that it’s possible to actually enjoy your job and be happy at work.

So, it was an event that we were hosting to hopefully boost the morale and reinvigorate our group of professionals to get them re-motivated and enthusiastic about their jobs. There was a lot of laughter, everybody was having a good time; got a lot of positive feedback. People seemed to be really enjoying themselves and also had them thinking and so Brad, one of the things that Brad helped with was we had to create the balloon animals, where the, or the balloon statue, where we all had to interact with each other and work together to create something within a matter of a few minutes and it worked out really well. As a team, it promoted teamwork and there was a lot of laughter. Everybody was having a good time. It was really engaging. I think that was one of the best parts about it, other than the things we will take home with us.

Chris Farley Motivational Speaker

Your Motivational Speaker Sucks

Seriously. How do you know if the motivational speaker you’re considering for your huge conference or event is any good?

The Chris Farley “Down by the River” horrible motivational speaker skits were hilarious… but sometimes it isn’t funny.  There ARE some horrible motivational speakers out there.  And there are way MORE mediocre speakers.

Update:  see Brad’s latest take on Chris Farley / Matt Foley Motivational Speaker Down By the River

How do you make sure that — for your meeting or convention — you not only have a decent speaker… you have an excellent one?  The answer is simple:  do your homework.

If I were hiring a professional speaker, I’d want to have some serious references and referrals.   I’m proud of mine…check out this video from a huge tech company I worked for recently:

Aw Shucks!

Looking for a motivational speaker for your event? Contact me here.

Interested in details about which program I presented for this client?  Go here.

Brad Montgomery
Funny Motivational Speaker, Keynote Speaker , Fan of Chris Farley

Or see the Happiness motivational speaker video on YOUTUBE.

Sad Sack just made crappy decisions.Sad sack

We’ve all said it: “Adjust your attitude.” “Make that frown turn upside down.” “Don’t worry. Be happy.” “Why are you always in such a bad mood?”

And then, of course, comes the classic response, “I can’t help it. It’s just the way I am.”

What that means is, “I can’t change. I’m just being me, and the me I am is a sad sack.” (How can a sack be sad, anyway?*)

Well, turns out, that’s not entirely true. Turns out, actually, that we have more control over our attitude than we ever thought. Who says? Social Psychologist Sonja Lyubomirsky says, that’s who.

And just who is Sonja Lyubomirsky, and why does she think she knows so much? Because she’s Dr. Sonja Lyubomirsky, Ph.d., researcher at Stanford University, super-smarty-pants, recipient of numerous grants from the National Institute of Mental Health, and author of the book, The How of Happiness: A New Approach to Getting the Life You Want (Penguin Books 2007).

And it’s not just her. Many social psychologists have studied the mystery surrounding what it is that exactly makes us happy, or un-happy as the case may be. Dr. L’s bibliography in her book is 45 pages long! That’s a lot of books, articles, speeches and research on the how’s and why’s of happiness.

If you don’t want to read all the research, here’s the Cliffs Notes:

There are three things going on when it comes to a person’s happiness or contentment:

  1. Genetic predisposition. Yep, you got it. A person’s genes (and not the 501 kind either) sets out his or her baseline on the Happy-o-Meter (a highly technical piece of scientific, specialized, calibrated, opinionated measuring equipment). Dr. L. says that 50% of a person’s contentment comes from their parents, and their grandparents, and their great-grandparents, and on and on—and not in the way you think, like the nagging, the guilt, the “I just hope you’re wearing clean underwear,” kind either. (What’s with all the underwear references, anyway?). In other words, your inherited temperament or personality does account for 50% of your happiness.

  2. Life circumstances. You know what these are. How much money you have; what kind of family were you born into; how good or not-so-good is your health; do you have a sick spouse, or naughty children; whether you live on top of a Superfund site; whether your underwear is clean (just kidding); you know, those kinds of things. Turns out “those things” have direct impact on how happy we are, but not, interestingly enough, a lot. These mostly out-of-our-control type of life circumstances have an approximately 10% impact on our happiness level, says the Happy-o-Meter.

  3. How we think and what we do. That’s the final thing. Our attitude. Our thoughts. Our outlook. If you’ve been doing the math, it turns out that 40% of our happiness is dependent upon our attitude.

Wow! That’s a lot of percents!  Our attitude, which we do get to control, accounts for 40% of our happiness according to the Happy-o-Meter. (The Happy-o-Meter is good at third grade math.)

The Best News to Hit Your Attitude All Year Long

This is fabulous news. We can’t control some things, but good old number three on the list up there, we can control. Even big things like tragedy or winning the lottery only dictate 10% of what makes us happy. (Well, in my case, winning a 10 million dollar lottery prize would make me 100% happier, but Dr. L. never asked me.)

Happiness Speaker Brad Montgomery at Lockheed Martin

What?! you say. That can’t be true. Winning the lottery would make anybody really, really happy, including all the people Dr. L did ask!. Probably 200% happier. (Ignore the frown from your fourth grade math teacher.)

But guess what? Dr. L says, things settle over time. People can be wildly unhappy or happy for moments in time, but after a while they settle and their happiness level goes back to baseline. Even if they win the $10 million. Even if a satellite crashes into their backyard ruining the newly installed patio. Or even if their chihuahua falls into a pothole and has to be retrieved by a fireman.

Good news is that we can control the 40%. How we think and what we do. For me this is excellent news. Forty percent is enough to take a really horrible day and make it only “bad.” I have the power to turn my day from horrible to bad. From bad into average. Or from average into outstanding. I have the power! (Remember that song? Sing it now. You have the Power!)

So what does this mean? Well, for one thing, turns out your grandma was right: you can turn your frown upside down. (Grandma would have been awesome in the workplace.) You can listen to reggae: Don’t worry. Be happy. You can adjust your attitude almost as much as you can adjust your underwear. (I can adjust my underwear 40%, no problem.) Right now if you want to be happy, remember how much is up to you. Stop whining. Start smiling. Focus on what you do and how you think. Not rocket science. Common sense.

And guess what else? If you’re going through a difficult time, a tragedy, a medical crisis, or fielding any of the rotten tomatoes life throws, knowing that you can control your response to it helps. You will get through it, you will heal, and you will rise back up to your average norm for happiness. It’s your response, your willingness to hit that Reset Button on the Happy-o-Meter, that really counts.

Extra Credit Question: What are you doing with your 40%? Are you making the right choices? Our control is greater than we would guess. Get up and start being happy now.

Motivational Speaker & Happiness Speaker

Book Brad to speak at your meeting, convention or event. — He’s a happiness speaker; and he’s funny. Are you looking for a motivational speaker who speaks about happiness and who gives specific tools and strategies for boosting your psyche, then consider Brad Montgomery, controller of his own 40%. He’s the only happiness speaker he knows.

* According to Wikipedia, The Sad Sack is an American fictional comic strip and comic book character created by Sgt. George Baker during World War II. Set in the United States Army, Sad Sack depicted an otherwise unnamed, lowly private experiencing some of the absurdities and humiliations of military life. The title was a euphemistic shortening of the military slang “sad sack of shit”, common during WWII. (Do you really want to be known as a “sad sack of shit”? I mean, really? Your grandmother would NOT approve.)

Looking for a Funny speaker who is motivating AND is an expert in how to be happy at work? for your event? Contact me here.

Brad Montgomery
Motivational Speaker on Happiness, Humorist, Seminar Leader

Ok, not totally.  But wait until you read this true story:

I was recently at a huge event in Florida — 450 professionals brought in from around the country – to be their closing motivational keynote speaker.  Nice.  They asked me to include all expenses in my contract to make it easier for them.  Fine.  No sweat.    (Can you tell that I’m leaving even the industry off to make sure I don’t step on any client toes? :)

My spot as the closing speaker was immediately following a boxed lunch.  After the morning session, the attendees grabbed a box lunch, went to their seats, ate… and waited for – well – me.

I got my gear set, was all-systems-go with the audio visual team, and had chatted with the big boss (who by the way had hired me two times in the past.)  So far, everything is easy and fun.

But here is where it gets hinky.  I was about to grab a box lunch… I was starving and was needed calories before I spoke for an hour and a half  … when I casually asked  the meeting planner if I could have a sandwich.  I asked her knowing it was a formality.  Of course she would feed her speaker.   I nearly didn’t ask.   

I was wrong.  She said, “Oh no, those are for the participants.”  I thought she was joking.  “You’re kidding, right?”    I honestly thought she was joking about not feeding me.

“No, we have accounted for all of the lunches, and they are for the registered attendees only.”  I was dumbfounded.  I wanted to say, “Well then I’d like to register.”  But all I could come up with was a clumsy, “But I’m your closing speaker.”  

“Sorry,” she said.  I was amazed.  With 450 people there, there just HAD to be ONE extra turkey sandwich.  And did she realize what it meant to me and her meeting to turn me down?

So I just said, “Ok, I’ll need to go get some food.” I left her and 4 tables piled high with ready-made lunches and left in search of a quick sandwich.  There were two restarurants in the hotel, but after talking to their hostesses it was clear that I wouldn’t have time to order there.  I eventually ended up at sandwich place next to the hotel and bought myself a — you guessed it —  turkey sandwich.  (Ironic, no?)

By the time I found this place, ordered, waited, wolfed down the sandwich, and made my way backturkey sandwich for the professional speaker to the convention area the meeting planner was in a panic. “Where were you?”  Again, I was dumbstruck.  I didn’t have anything graceful to say, so I just came out with a, “I had to go find some food.”

She looked surprised.  Apparently her other speakers never need fuel before they speak.  We walked back towards the meeting room and passed what was now a single table piled high with turkey sandwich box lunches.  She saw me look at them:  “I guess there were some left after all.”

I was silent.   But inside I was somewhere between laughing and crying. 

What’s the point?  I can tell you it isn’t the $8.67 I spent on my sandwich.  My point is that this woman was responsible for an event that cost a gazillion dollars and she threw her keynote speaker off-balance because of a turkey sandwich.  I didn’t care about the money, I cared that because she was counting her pennies I was inconvenienced, and because of that I wasn’t fully in the game.  Instead of eating with the attendees, getting the latest scoop on the convention, and having a chance to go over my program notes I was rushing around trying to find calories that were within reach the whole time.  Maddening. 

Normally I eat with my audience because that’s where I get the last-minute scuttlebutt.  That’s where I hear about the most recent stresses, the talk of the meeting or convention, and that’s where I often write some of my best jokes.  Not this time. 

Instead of getting myself psyched up for doing a good job for her, I was trying to make it back to the hotel on time.

More irony:  The meeting planner was off balance, nervous and upset because her speaker had vanished.   Both of us — and the entire audience — would have been better served if I was given a sandwich.

[Hey, don’t worry.  The keynote was fun and well-received — if I do say so myself.  It was a great audience and I’ve done this keynote thing a bunch.  It went great.  But why in the world did this planner make it so hard?]

Message to meeting planners:  if you are hiring a speaker, do your best to set them at ease.  You don’t have to pamper us, (though we love that more than you’ll guess) but it is a good investment to remove as many headaches for us as you can.  You want us to be 100% when we hit your platform.  So make it easy for us to rock.  Oh, and by the way, buy us that sandwich.

Are you looking to HIRE  a keynote speaker?  Contact me here. (I’ll even bring my own sandwich…just give me warning. :)

Brad Montgomery
Motivational Keynote Speaker, Lover of Meeting Planners, Fan of Turkey Sandwiches

PS.  I asked my client  — not the meeting planner but the client — if I could tell this story from the stage.  I gave him a brief summary, told him why I thought it was funny and how I thought that there was a lesson in this story for his specific group.  He declined and admitted that it made sense but the meeting planner was “highly strung” and he didn’t think she could take it.  Oh… telling that story from the stage would have been funny!

PPS.  Ever had a similar experience?   Would you be so kind as to leave it in a comment?

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How To Book a Motivational Speaker

Day 1 Of Your Requested Course

4 Easy Tips for Choosing the Right Keynote Speaker

1. Book a speaker with a proven track record. Your

speaker should have a LONG list of happy clients. Ask

your prospective speaker to provide a list of RECENT


One way to assure that you’ve got a real pro is to

book a CSP. Certified Speaking Professionals

are the meeting planners mark of excellence… and

booking a CSP can be like money in the bank.

Learn why you should care about CSPs here:

Keynote Speaker Award

2. If humor is important to you when selecting

a speaker (and it should be!), make sure your

speaker is ACTUALLY funny — and very clean. The

last thing you want is a keynote speaker who uses humor

that offends people in your group. Book a speaker

who understand and have tons of experience with

humor in the professional and corporate world.

How does Brad feel about crystal clean humor?

Learn more here:
Frequently Asked Questions about Keynote Speakers

3. Learn more about your speakers RECENT clients. Make

sure that your speaker has hundreds of references. Check

for a long list of past clients.

Check references (and make sure that the references are recent.)

And check with your potential speakers’ past clients to

make sure that your speaker is as professional OFF the

platform as he is ON the platform.

Learn more about Brad’s clients here: Brad’s Partial Client List

4. It’s VERY important to ask your potential keynote speaker a ton of

questions. Why should I book YOU? How do I know

you’ll deliver? Are you easy to work with? Can

you tailor your message to my group? You say you

are an expert… how do I know for sure? How do

you approach humor? How will my group feel after

they meet you?

Don’t stop asking questions until you know you have the

right person.

Not only will the answers to these questions help you pick the

right speaker, but having a dialoge with the speaker will help you

get a “feel” for your speaker. After all, if your speaker sounds

horrible on the phone, how will he sound in front of your group?


Looking for a motivational speaker and want to ask BRAD some of those questions? Give us a call at 800.624.4280


Looking for more about motivational speakers?  Visit Brad’s blog.


Make sure your speaker is ACTUALLY funny.



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Copyright © 2010 Brad Montgomery. All rights reserved

The details:

Brad Montgomery is a laugh-out-loud funny motivational
speaker, humor at work expert and Meeting Energizer. Speaking. Facilitation. Customized High-Energy Content Games. Master of Ceremonies, & Copy Boy.

Reach Brad at 800.624.4280

© 2010 Brad Montgomery Productions Inc., All rights reserved.
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Finally, some readers love to find typos, grammar errors and other sundry goofs. I occasionally leave them in just to make those people happy. So if you found some… Yippee! It’s you’re lucky day.

If you’re still reading this far down, you REALLY need to find a hobby. It’s over! All done.

Seriously dude. It’s time to get back to work. Don’t you have some email to return or something?

Ok, now you’re just pushing it. You need some serious help with time management. Move on baby! This thing is over!

Since you’re still here, here’s a video of a flash mob performance in Seattle. I love it for two reasons. One, the energy is undeniable. I’d love to be part of one, and I’d love to witness one. Second, what killer marketing for the TV show. Hire some dancers, and let YouTube have it’s way. I wish I had thought of it.

You must be craving more. Why are you here? I bet you have something that you SHOULD be doing but don’t want to. Clean your desk. Get coffee. Call your mom.

There has to be a better way to procrastinate than this!

Since you’re here …might as well check out my blog. (Hey! If you can’t fight it, embrace it!)