Unpaid does not Equate to “Not Valuable”

Why some unpaid opportunities are still valuable

Have you ever said something…and then heard someone else repeat it and thought, “Wait! Whaaaaat?! THAT is not what I said?!”  Yeah, me too.

Recently, a few remarks have hit my inbox (and come up in conversation) that shook me to the core. 

“I was selected to speak at ____ conference, but it’s unpaid so it’s really no big deal.”

“I’m not going to pitch to speak at that event because I know she doesn’t pay her speakers.”

“I was selected to speak at ____ conference, but they don’t want to pay me so I turned it down.”


I think it’s time to clear the air around here.

My goal is to empower you to be thoughtful with your speaking strategy. Our work here at JRHQ is dedicated to getting you the tools, resources, and confidence to add speaking to your business in a profitable way.  The goal was NEVER to discourage you from valuable ‘unpaid’ speaking opportunities.  


Unpaid does not equate to “not valuable”


The reason we speak is NOT only to make money.

We speak to serve our audience (and the host).

We speak to impact the masses.

We speak to inspire change.


Earning an income from speaking is a bi-product of our commitment to service.

 What I want is for you to:

  • Be so well prepared and practiced that you feel confident charging for your time.

  • Treat your presentation as a valuable service for a larger audience

  • Shatter your comfort zone and seek out new opportunities

  • Do your homework, study your audience, and ask the right questions before you make a speaking decision

  • Respect the stage and the larger impact that comes with stepping onto it

  • Celebrate every opportunity you are given, paid or unpaid


What I don't want is for you to:

  • Equate unpaid opportunities with the phrase “not valuable”

  • Minimize opportunities because you’re not making money upfront

  • Say “yes” to every opportunity without making sure it's a good fit

  • Say “no” solely because you’re not being paid upfront


You’re not going to perfect your craft if you don’t have a chance to practice it.... so get on that stage and serve your people.

Do you need to break the bank building your credibility? No... But should you turn down valuable opportunities because they’re unpaid? Absolutely not.


Weigh your options, do the math and seek out opportunities that are mutually beneficial.

Not sure where to begin? Take my quiz to find out exactly what type of opportunities would be best for where you're at in your biz right now.



Jessica Rasdall public speaking strategist

JESSICA RASDALL // national speaker & Public speaking strategist


Jessica Rasdall is your secret weapon to achieving the speaking success you desire. As a professional speaker and coach for female entrepreneurs, she is dedicated to partnering with women business owner to craft stories and presentation that connect with their audience and help them stand out in a saturated market.