How to Choose the Best Motivational Speaker
I just finished working for the State of Wyoming Department of Transportation or WYDOT, and I was struck with an epiphany when my meeting planner told me how he judges success for his professional speakers – the people that he hires. And here’s the deal, it was a surprise to me. What they hired me to do is the same thing that they hired every professional speaker that they work with to do which is first, to start with a motivational, inspirational keynote speech to open the convention. So, I did that on Tuesday’s afternoon and then on Wednesday, they asked me to return to do two different breakout sessions twice which was pretty cool.
I did Breakout Session A, two times and then I did, after lunch, Breakout Session B, two times. And by the way, as an aside, I really love it when my clients work hard to get more value and more return on their investment when they hire me and having me do multiple programs is a great idea. So, anyway, back to how you can tell if your motivational or inspirational speaker is any good.
The client told me that they judge success based on the attendance at the following day’s breakout sessions. So, that means they look in the room and the chairs are full, they know the speaker was well-received, and if the chairs are empty, they know that the speaker was horrible.
So, happily, today it was great. We had lines and the room was packed and, again, lines was a great sign. The client told me when he saw people lined up waiting for the breakout session to begin, he knew that he had chosen the right speaker which, of course, was very flattering. But, I had never thought about that as a barometer for success.
One of the things that I ask of my clients before the event is how do you judge success? And I think that’s a good question because sometimes they want me to make sure the audience is happy. Other meeting planners don’t care if the audience is happy, they want to make sure that their boss is happy, and if you think about it, that’s a pretty big difference.
Sometimes, I’m called in to deliver a message the audience doesn’t necessarily want to hear. So, theoretically, it’s quite possible that you could do a great job for the boss and the audience wouldn’t like you. Well, you know, and conversely, it’s important to know that if your job is to get the audience going and the audience happy and not the boss, well, that’s important to know. But, I had never once thought that my primary mission was to make sure that the room is full the next day for my returning breakout sessions. Pretty cool, huh?
So, if you’re looking for a motivational, inspirational speaker, I’d love to be your guy. If you’re looking for a speaker who can do a keynote and then come back and do some breakout sessions, I’d love to be your guy. And most of all, if you’d like to hire an inspirational speaker who can guarantee that the next day, people will choose to come to my breakout sessions as opposed to going to other ones, well, I’d love to be your guy too.
Wyoming Department of Transportation, thank you for hiring me. We had a great time in Cheyenne, Wyoming; loved being part of it. Thanks so much.
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Inspirational Speaker, Very Popular Breakout Session Leader
Fan of the Wyoming Department of Transportation