You’ve reviewed all the promotional materials, you’ve watched all the videos, and you’re confident that you’ve picked the perfect speaker for your upcoming meeting. But you’re not quite ready to sit back and relax. There are still a few things you need to do to ensure that your speaker provides the kind of event that attendees will rave about for a long time to come!
Once you’ve selected the best speaker for your meeting, follow up with these tips for getting the most out of your investment.
- Send your speaker lots of information about your organization and upcoming meeting. Most professional speakers today provide pre‐program questionnaires (PPQ) for you to complete (here’s an example of my PPQ). And while completing a lengthy questionnaire might seem like one more hassle in your day, it will pay off in a highly relevant presentation, tailored to your program’s needs. The more information you provide, the better. Your prospective speaker can always “edit down,” but he or she can’t ever “edit up”!
- Partner with your speaker for the best results. The best professional speakers work closely with meeting planners to create an impactful presentation. A busy professional speaker addresses more than 100 audiences each year and is, therefore, a gold mine of ideas for meetings. So be flexible — explain what you have in mind, but also ask your speaker for his or her input. For example, I am a high‐energy speaker who likes to move around — and into — the audience as much as possible. I appreciate it when I can work with the meeting planner and/or event coordinator to make that possible. Of course, if I’m asked to stand behind a lectern, I will do so. But rarely would that situation be as effective as one in which I had the freedom to move around (and the audio system to accommodate that).