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Topics: Communications Management
Becoming a speaker. Share your story
I am curious to learn the stories behind how well seasoned PM become a speaker. Are there common trends to get there? For example, starting off by writing a blog or books, which increase visibility and eventually leads to speaking opportunities.

Share your story.
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Dear Eduard
Interesting your question
Thanks for sharing

I think that writing articles on blogs or books is a completely different challenge than speaking in public (giving speeches)

Writing blog articles or books can make us famous
I've heard speeches by authors (from books or writers) what I consider "great nightmares" :-)

I started by taking a training course for trainers (pedagogy) and then I started teaching professional training

I came to the conclusion that giving training is completely different from speaking to large audiences

I refined my approach to large audiences at a Toastmaster club

I also confirmed that, to make good speeches, it is necessary to practice continuously (as I call it: "going to the gym")

Today it is easier to improve skills as a speaker using video
Eduard -

I've always enjoyed presenting and as I worked in a number of consulting roles through my career I was put into situations where I had to present to small and large audiences. This preceded when I started writing (2009) and has continued to larger groups, virtual presenting and multi-industry conferences.

I registered a long time back in PMI's speakers clearinghouse which may not even exist anymore - that led to a number of speaking gigs as did word of mouth and online networking.

Kiron
Hello Eduard: My story is similar to what Kiron described. I was asked to speak to groups on different topics which led to me volunteering at my local PMI chapter to speak. I've done that 3 or 4 times now. I also was a speaker in an earlier career on some programs a large health insurance company had built - they asked me to speak to groups large and small and that helped build my confidence. Blogging definitely helped me with confidence and I applied to be a speaker at PMO Symposium 2019. I also volunteered a topic on this site and offered a webinar on workplace bullying after Dave Davis encouraged me to do so. He is a regular speaker and now a friend after we met in person at the Global PMI Conference in Philadelphia and both attended the PMO Symposium conference in Denver. The encouragement I have received from peers, from coworkers and on this site is what gave me the courage to feel like my voice could inspire others. Since sharing my recent webinar, I have heard from so many people around the globe. It has been an amazing experience and I would highly recommend it to you, Eduard. If you are interested in speaking, please reach out to others and apply! All our voices, all our experiences are important!
Eduard,
When I worked in Europe I did a lot of gigs in Catalan/Spanish and French, most IT related. I really enjoyed it and the feedback was amazing.

When moved to US, as I didn't have a big network I started in my local chapter doing a educational class, offering to talk in big organizations for free, and after a big workshop in the local PMI convention. Tons of hours of networking and preparation of the content.

The last one I faced an unexpected challenge:

My accent. People rated me with 1 star "Great content, very strong accent". "Nice presenter, I didn't understand her"

That killed my confidence, I had great things to share... but I didn't reached most of the attendees...so didn't apply for more.

Since then, I worked in build up my confidence again, appreciate the encourage that I get during PMI GC in Philadelphia where I met amazing people like Lori, Kiron and Andrew...guess what...they understood my accent!
I actively listen my co-workers, mentors and managers support and push to apply again for more speaking opportunities...so...

If you really enjoy and love sharing your knowledge and experience..GO FOR IT, get the support of this community and your network and try to learn and chew fast the bad feedback.
...
1 reply by Eduard Hernandez
Feb 14, 2020 4:39 AM
Eduard Hernandez
...
Thanks for sharing your story, Maria.

I have always had interest in saying something, since the times I was a college student and gave mathematics or chemistry lessons to young students, I genuinely liked it.

Fast forwarding, I enjoy giving short seminars to my colleagues when I feel that there is something for them to learn. Feedback is usually good (and Dutch people tend to be quite dry on this aspect). I also like writing in my blog. And lst year I got the opportunity to write a short article in PM Network (well, my article was long, they cut it short by a lot, but this is another story). I am not sure how they came accross to offer me to write a piece, but then I though "Oh, maybe one day I receive a speaking opportunity".

As you well said, nurturing the network is an essential part of it. I joined the Dutch chapter a few months ago, which should also increase the chances of things happening.

GrĂ cies!
Feb 13, 2020 1:36 PM
Replying to Mayte Mata-Sivera
...
Eduard,
When I worked in Europe I did a lot of gigs in Catalan/Spanish and French, most IT related. I really enjoyed it and the feedback was amazing.

When moved to US, as I didn't have a big network I started in my local chapter doing a educational class, offering to talk in big organizations for free, and after a big workshop in the local PMI convention. Tons of hours of networking and preparation of the content.

The last one I faced an unexpected challenge:

My accent. People rated me with 1 star "Great content, very strong accent". "Nice presenter, I didn't understand her"

That killed my confidence, I had great things to share... but I didn't reached most of the attendees...so didn't apply for more.

Since then, I worked in build up my confidence again, appreciate the encourage that I get during PMI GC in Philadelphia where I met amazing people like Lori, Kiron and Andrew...guess what...they understood my accent!
I actively listen my co-workers, mentors and managers support and push to apply again for more speaking opportunities...so...

If you really enjoy and love sharing your knowledge and experience..GO FOR IT, get the support of this community and your network and try to learn and chew fast the bad feedback.
Thanks for sharing your story, Maria.

I have always had interest in saying something, since the times I was a college student and gave mathematics or chemistry lessons to young students, I genuinely liked it.

Fast forwarding, I enjoy giving short seminars to my colleagues when I feel that there is something for them to learn. Feedback is usually good (and Dutch people tend to be quite dry on this aspect). I also like writing in my blog. And lst year I got the opportunity to write a short article in PM Network (well, my article was long, they cut it short by a lot, but this is another story). I am not sure how they came accross to offer me to write a piece, but then I though "Oh, maybe one day I receive a speaking opportunity".

As you well said, nurturing the network is an essential part of it. I joined the Dutch chapter a few months ago, which should also increase the chances of things happening.

GrĂ cies!
@Kiron, @Lori, @ Luis, thank you for sharing your stories. They share a few points, and this is precisely what I was looking for. Thanks!
...
2 replies by Kiron Bondale and Luis Branco
Feb 14, 2020 6:50 AM
Luis Branco
...
Dear Eduard
Thank you for your attention to what I wrote
Feb 14, 2020 7:11 AM
Kiron Bondale
...
Good luck, Eduard! Having joined the Dutch chapter, I'd definitely recommend contacting their Director of Events or Director of Professional Development to identify upcoming opportunities for you to present. You might also consider contacting Marjorie, Laura or Kimberly in this community if you have a topic for a webinar which hasn't been covered already...

Kiron
Feb 14, 2020 4:41 AM
Replying to Eduard Hernandez
...
@Kiron, @Lori, @ Luis, thank you for sharing your stories. They share a few points, and this is precisely what I was looking for. Thanks!
Dear Eduard
Thank you for your attention to what I wrote
Feb 14, 2020 4:41 AM
Replying to Eduard Hernandez
...
@Kiron, @Lori, @ Luis, thank you for sharing your stories. They share a few points, and this is precisely what I was looking for. Thanks!
Good luck, Eduard! Having joined the Dutch chapter, I'd definitely recommend contacting their Director of Events or Director of Professional Development to identify upcoming opportunities for you to present. You might also consider contacting Marjorie, Laura or Kimberly in this community if you have a topic for a webinar which hasn't been covered already...

Kiron
Eduard,
Keep us posted and bona sort (Good Luck)

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