What It Takes to Be Successful as a Professional Speaker

What It Takes to Be Successful as a Professional Speaker

I am often asked by clients and prospective clients about what it takes to succeed in the ever-more-competitive world of professional speaking.  My short answer is always that, even more than talent, what you need to succeed is the ability to work harder than your competition.  Those who show toughness and hang in there, I’ve […]

Toastmasters’ New Venture in Online Education

Toastmasters’ New Venture in Online Education

I’m a long-time fan of Toastmasters and the work it does worldwide to promote public speaking and leadership.  And it’s been a while since I talked about the group.  A recent announcement caught my eye – Toastmasters was launching something called Pathways.  I had to know – what was it?  How was Toastmasters changing?  And […]

Coping with the Stress of Public Speaking

Coping with the Stress of Public Speaking

It’s no secret that public speaking is stressful for most people.  Helping people cope with that stress is something I spend a good deal of my professional life working on, through blog posts, books, speaking, and one-on-one coaching. In Power Cues, I talk about the importance of self-talk, self-training, visualization, and other such forms of […]

How to Connect with an Audience Fast

How to Connect with an Audience Fast

Speakers, like executives, salespeople, managers, trainers, consultants, advisors, engineers – the whole information society, in fact – are terribly afraid of losing the attention that audiences seem to be increasingly unwilling to give them these days, and certainly not for long.  Whether large or small, audiences are now objects of great fear for anyone who […]

Our Most Common Vocal Sins and What to Do About Them

Our Most Common Vocal Sins and What to Do About Them

I wish I could say that the 21st Century, while giving rise to technological wonders, artisan coffee, and Uber, has also seen the dawn of a new age of public speaking, and the voice.  Sadly, that’s not the case, and voices are getting worse.  Mobile phones, headsets, and open cube-style offices have corrupted our ability […]

The Uselessness of Speaker Ratings

One of the unfair realities of the professional speaking business is that celebrities get a pass when it comes time to rate the speaker after the speech.  And ratings are incredibly important to speakers because they are so essential for good buzz, repeat business, and long-term success. I’ve seen my fair share of celebrities speak, […]