For the first ten years of my professional speaking career I hardly spent time with other speakers. I looked at them as competitors, and really could not see why they would be interested in helping me out, or what they could be teaching me.
I was young and naive.
The last ten years I have been spending a lot of time learning from other speakers, but also in helping other speakers grow.
As the current president of Asia Professional Speakers Singapore (APSS. WWW.AsiaSpeakers.org) I am spending a lot of free time helping to develop the professional speaking industry in Asia.
Here are some of the things I did in the month of November:
In November I had 27 (twenty seven!) one-on-one meetings with speakers who either wanted help to become better as speakers or where I thought they could teach me something – often if was of course a little bit of both.
Most of these meetings where live, some where on Skype.
I also, in November:
Helped organised and attended the CSP Academy (CSP stands for “Certified Speaking Professional”) a two day event where I learnt from two fellow CSP’s (Brenda Bence and Tom Abbott.)
Helped organise and attended the APSS Monthly Meeting where I learnt from Raymond Miranda and Simone de Haas
Helped organise and attended the play “Guards of the Taj” together with 20 other speakers where we first watched the play and then got to meet and learn from the actors after the play.
The business of speaking is one of those industries where you really do not have competitors, but more like “external peers” – other people excited about spreading a message to humanity, and more than interested in learning from others in order to move the whole industry forward.
I have learnt about how to make my voice better, about how to spread a message wider, about how to tell stories, about how to structure a speech. And I have helped many, many speakers this month find their inner theme, helped them write their book, find their speaking topic, develop their business, structure their speech and many, many other things.
A few times I charged for it. Most time I did not.
My Inner Theme is “Humanity to the Power of Ideas”, that means that I believe i the Potential of Humanity and in the Power of Ideas. And that, in turn, means that is is part of my Inner Theme to help other speakers find and spread their message to as many people as possible.
If you are a speaker, connect with other speakers and help develop each other’s speaking business and speeches.
I promise that it will make you a better speaker. I also promise that it will make you a better person.
Now, perhaps you do not think you have time to do 27 one-on-one meetings with other speakers in one month while helping to organise 3 speaker events. Perhaps you think you are too busy building a speaking career. But then consider that I spoke in 18 different countries on 5 different continents in 2018. Without having any staff.
I am going to say that helping other speakers is a way to help yourself grow as a speaker. And when you grow as a speaker your business will grow too.
(But that doesn’t mean I am recommending that all speakers do what I did in November every month. You do it the way you want to do it. But I hope this post has inspired you to consider working closer with other speakers to learn from each other to help you develop your trade. It will make you grow.)