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  • Writer's pictureYasmine El-Baz

5 Factors to Consider Before Accepting an Invitation to Speak At a Conference

When you receive an invitation to speak at a certain event/conference, you most probably start immediately thinking about the topic you’ll deliver and whether you’ll have time to prepare for it or not. While in a matter of fact, you could be skipping a very important step which is validating whether you should or should not accept that invitation based on other factors relevant to the event itself. Below are the top 5 factors to consider before accepting an invitation to speak at a conference: 1) The Events’ Objective, Theme, and Agenda One of the principles in your decision-making is to check whether the event’s objective matches with your area of expertise or not and whether you’ll be able to connect to the event’s theme or not. The reason why you also need to check the agenda is to validate whether the event’s main purpose is commercial, or it has the right balance between adding value and the commercial part. You don’t want to end up participating in an event that appreciates fun over value! Successful public speaking is the right balance between value and entertainment. 2) The Organizing Partner One of the most underrated points is checking the background of the organizing company. It’s the strongest pillar that can help your presentation succeed or fail. Unqualified organizers with insufficient experience can lead to terrible event time management, bad planning, unprofessional communication with a shortage of valuable data, or even using an uncomfortable location setup. Look up the company’s history, previous events, and monitor their style of communication, this can tell you a lot about the future of your cooperation with them. 3) The Other Participating Speakers Despite the fact that most people will argue this point, but you need to understand that your name will be associated with the rest of the list of the other speakers even if you don’t want to. That’s why putting an eye on the other participating speakers is important, and it's not about whether they were big names or not, but whether your name will be associated with the right experts having similar values or you've selected the wrong group that might affect your positioning and brand image. 4) The Scale Of The Event The scale of the event isn't about the size of the crowd, it's actually more about the opportunities the event will open for you. Also remember that you could have a small crowd but with a great influence, or with good media coverage. And sometimes you could have a large crowd but with zero positive return out of it. Most of the round tables of businessmen do not include large crowds but have great media coverage and definite influence. That doesn’t mean that you should refuse all the opportunities that do not come with a huge benefit to you because sometimes you need to practice your own public speaking skills but make sure you’re not just accepting more similar events without any new challenges. 5) The Fees Of course, if you’re a known speaker in your field or even if you're still on your way to become one, professional organizers will automatically ask about your fees. But unfortunately, some organizers might manipulate this part and could even ask you to either participate for free or lower down your fees. Accordingly, the question is: when to accept this and when should you decline? a) If the event is commercial which means the audience is paying to attend and there are sponsors, then there isn’t any reason for you to accept speaking for free. b) If it’s a charity event or the audience has difficult access to the type of topics that you deliver, then you could give away your fees or a part of it, if this is one of your personal values, to support the event or the audience. c) If you’re still starting your career as a public speaker, want to practice your public speaking, or add more events to your biography, then you could give away your fees or a part of it. However, I don’t recommend giving away the other privileges as transportation, accommodation if the event will be held in another country, and proper marketing. #PublicSpeaking #Coaching #Executive_Speech #PresentationSkills #Public_Speaking #Speakup #EventManagment #Conferences #ConferenceManagment #Keynotespeaker


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