Are You Ready To Speak?
You’re thinking about becoming a speaker and stepping into an educator role in your industry but you're not sure if you're ready. How do we know if we're ready to be a speaker? What makes us qualified to speak?
Spoiler alert: It's not a certain number of social media followers or a specific income level.
Watch this week’s video to find out if you’re ready to speak:
Today we're answering the question, “How do I know if I'm ready to speak?” But first, here’s my friendly disclaimer: Speaking is not one size fits all. We've each had our own experiences, been down our own paths, and we're bringing something unique to the table. What determines when we're ready to hit the stage is going to be a little bit different for each of us. Regardless of where we're at right now, there are three questions that I want you to ask yourself.
“Have I seen success? Do I consider myself successful?”
Pump the brakes. Don't get tripped up on this one. I am not defining success for you. What does success look like for you? Do you feel like you've achieved it? Are you staying awake at night stressed out, not able to sleep because you're unsure about your business? Are you still fumbling around trying to figure out what your next step is or are you confident in the work that you do? Do you enjoy spending time with your clients and are you excited for the projects you have coming up?
Success will look different for each of us, but success and how you define it is important. Working from a place of scarcity is hard. Can you imagine trying to speak from that same place? It would be very difficult to inspire your audience, to help them feel empowered, or take your tips and suggestions if you are not confident with your own methods.
Let me ask you again, do you feel successful in the work that you do and do you feel confident helping someone else take those same steps?
“Have I been in the trenches?”
When you think about the topic you want to speak on... can you say, “I’ve been there, done that?” It’s often tempting to jump up and speak out when we see hot button topics trending on social media or popping up in the news. But if we don't have ONE clear message we speak on, or if we're not speaking about something that we have personally experienced... our message gets watered down.
Before you step onto the stage, consider the topic at hand. Is this topic something you’ve been through the trenches with? Is it a topic that you’ve experienced both the struggles and the triumphs? Are you able to understand where your audience is standing right now and can help them get to the other side of the trench?
“Are you actively helping other people get out of those trenches?”
It’s great for us to get on the stage and paint a pretty picture of what “could be.” It’s one thing to tell our audience how wonderful things could be if we would just get off the couch and make it happen. But are you actually helping people get off that couch?
Do you have services, products, programs, strategies, tips or tools to help people implement the things you're speaking about? If you're teaching people how to design their own websites, do you have a course or a program that shows them how to do this? Are you going to give them the next steps that they can implement right away? If you're giving a more motivational or inspiring talk around overcoming adversity, do you have strategies they can implement in their daily life? Maybe you've written a book that you could give them.
When you're done with your presentation, your audience is going to be excited and they're going to want more! If you're not actively in the trenches helping them take those next steps, it's going to be very difficult for you to serve them after the presentation is over... and that's what speaking is all about.
We are there to serve from the stage. We are not there for fame or glory. We’re not on the stage to bask in the spotlight. So if we don't have these things in place to serve our audience to the best of our ability, maybe we're not ready to speak just yet.
So if you’re not sure if you’re ready to speak, I want you to ask yourself:
Have you achieved success in your own definition?
Have you been there, done that? Have you walked through those trenches?
Are you actively helping people get out of those trenches?
If you're still not sure where you fall into this mix of speaking or if it's even the right time for you, don't worry, friend. I've prepared an awesome little 10 question quiz that is going to help you out. Just click below and answer the questions. The quiz will let you know what speaking to you fall into and how to get started. It'll help you figure out what topics you should be speaking on and what events you should be going after.