How I Booked My FIRST Speaking Engagement!

Black Woman Public Speaking

The formula was everything but magical. In fact, the formula involved getting out of my own head. Once I decided to embark on this new journey I began the legwork. I would need a website, a highlight reel, an email address and so on and so forth. I quickly became so entangled in the planning and making sure everything was perfect.

It was the day I realized seeking perfection would draw the planning and branding process out forever that I realized I was hindering myself. You see, I would spend hours poring over my website and hours revising my professional bio. Then I’d wake up the next day and do the same until a vicious cycle began.

As I was driving to work one day, I was reminded that if we continue to dwell on the planning of something, we never actually begin. So here I was, with not much footage for a reel and a website. Honestly, I just closed my eyes and took a leap of faith. What I had wasn’t horrible, but it wasn’t the best. However…it was something. And something is way more than nothing.

In a nutshell I’m saying just start applying! Start seeking out opportunities and making contacts. Don’t sit back and overanalyze your strategy–just get out there. Use local connections and social media to your advantage and JUST GO! It worked for me….with half of a highlight reel! What’s there to lose?

Now of course I’m not saying you can do this with nothing. There are still a few things I DO recommend before putting yourself out there. First, you’ll need a professional email address and a website of some sort. A highlight reel is ideal but not necessary at this point. With a good email address and a solid and relevant programming list (see mine for an example), you’re well on your way to begin making your pitches.

What you choose to speak on should be something you’re passionate about and have first hand experience in. That’s the hardest part but once you’ve nailed that down and have your minimum branding (website and email), you will pass the laugh test when you make your pitches. Remember, this should never be about money. Speaking to audiences should always be to motivate, inspire and encourage others while fulfilling your own passion for the craft. If the money comes…great!

Best of luck on your journey! Affirm yourself today. You got this.