This week we had a real treat at Company of Women, we got to hear a real pro tell it like it is.

The topic of finding more speaking gigs was popular from the get-go.  I knew when I had over 30 people registered weeks ago, that this was going to be big.  Throw in Amber Mac’s decision to join us, and we were sold out.

For those of you who haven’t heard of Amber which is feasible if you are not in the IT/artificial intelligence world, she is a seasoned professional who has been speaking professionally for the past thirteen years and is in great demand around the world.

After hearing her speak, I can see why.  First she is very personable and down to earth.  No airs and graces here.  She told us a little about her speaking background in that during high school she would avoid public speaking at all costs.  Originally from PEI, she never dreamt she would be speaking around the world.

What motivated her to get over her fears?  She got offered a paid gig.  Money truly talks.  She also shared some real gems with us.

  1. Build your platform on the Internet.  You need to develop a following so that event planners know that you will bring in people.
  2. If you want to get listed with a speaker’s bureau, market yourself as an expert, not a speaker.
  3. Hone your area of expertise so you can honestly talk on your topic (s).
  4. Develop a niche through which you get known as THE person on a specific topic.
  5. Keep learning and broadening your knowledge.
  6. Stay current.
  7. Change up your presentations.  Keep them interesting.
  8. Follow and scope out who you need to approach about speaking. Trade associations and membership groups are often the ones with a budget.
  9. Be prepared to do some free talks – perhaps for a cause you believe in or where the event itself is high profile and will look good for you.
  10. Make sure what you have listed on LinkedIn highlights and ties in with what you speak about.

What I appreciated most about Amber’s talk was that she role modelled the type of presentation that audiences like.  She was funny, straightforward, no jargon and left her ego at the door.  She was there to help and support us.  And she did.

Thank you Amber. And our thanks to Rania Walker for inviting her to the breakfast and for rounding off the session with information on speaker kits and making your talk interesting.

Anne Day

Anne Day

Company of Women

I have had an eclectic career from running non-profit organizations and being editor of a national magazine, to working for government on women’s issues. In 2003 I launched Company of Women, an organization that supports women in business. A prolific blogger, I also write for the Huffington Post, and several other online publications. I am the author of five books on women and entrepreneurship, and co-author of Good Enough. Embrace who you are. Unleash your brilliance. which is available on amazon.ca In June, 2016 I launched Full Circle Publishing offering one-stop services to get your words out into the world.