As a speaker, why you need to ask what, why and how! The reason is that you will be negotiating with yourself to motivate yourself and drive your speaking business forward.

Here is the advice I gave to some new speakers in the professional speaking association at a bootcamp last Thursday in Reading, Berkshire, UK. This applies to anyone considering a career in speaking. Speaking is the vehicle, your expertise is the subject that will get you paid. Speaking might just be marketing and negotiating for other things. Books, workshops, masterclasses, consultancy, conferences, mentoring, coaching or just your business

1 – When you are speaking the audience doesn’t want to know what you do, they want to know what you can do for them. That is what will get you booked to speak.

2 – Test your talks whenever you can. To local groups, associations etc. It doesn’t matter what you get paid or even not get paid. You need as much R+D, practice and exposure as possible.

3 – Only get feedback or feedforward as I call it from people who you admire and respect. People who have been there and done it.

4 – Soak up wisdom, watch experts, model their styles and dismiss what wouldn’t work for you at that point.

5 – Mastermind groups. A great way to motivate each other, share knowledge and get people to help you. If you were to set one up at a convenient point both geographically and from a diary point of view, I would be pleased to join the day and share how to get the most out of the group and share a few nuggets.

6 – If you are going to make speaking, masterclasses, training or workshops your career. Remember that there are a lot of people doing it.

7 – Therefore you must spend some time thinking about –

What is your USP?

Why should people buy from you?
What is your specialism that you are passionate about?
How will it sell?
How you should price it?

8 – Finally – Are you running a life style business or a cash flow business? What is your thinking? Are you doing it to earn serious money for mortgages and pay your pension? The reason you need to consider it is because they need different energies and strategies.

Derek Arden is an Inspirational Speaker and a Negotiation Expert, known as Mr Negotiator