Brenda’s Blog

Professional Speakers Celebration Day 2024

March 21, 2024

Last week marked Professional Speakers Celebration Day, a time to reflect on the art of impactful speaking. 🎤

As a professional speaker for the past two decades, I’ve had the privilege of standing before audiences all around the world, sharing insights and stories that resonate. But amidst the applause, there’s always one lesson I keep in mind: It’s never about the speaker—it’s always about the audience.

I recall vividly the early days of my professional speaking journey. Fraught with uncertainty, I needed some guidance, so I turned to Sandra, a seasoned coach. With her support, I landed a speaking engagement for an audience of 500—a daunting prospect for a newbie.

When I shared my fears with Sandra, she posed a question that would redefine my entire approach: “Who is this about, Brenda?”

Startled, I realized the truth: This wasn’t about *me*—it was about the audience. Sandra’s words resonated deeply, solidifying a fundamental truth for effective speaking: The audience is everything.

From that moment on, my focus shifted to understanding and serving the needs of those I would address. With each speech, I tailored my message to respond to their desires, needs, aspirations. The outcome? I was liberated—the nerves and anxiety shifted to a firm commitment for audience connection.

Last year, I was honored to be inducted into the Professional Speaker Hall of Fame. I don’t view that as an achievement solely for the accolades, but it is my deepest hope that it represents the impact on the hundreds of thousands I’ve had the privilege to address over the years.

This journey has taught me a universal truth: When we prioritize the audience above all else, our impact grows.

And this wisdom extends far beyond professional speakers, offering invaluable guidance to leaders and communicators alike.

As a C-Suite Executive Leadership Coach, I’ve seen how this mindset shift can transform presentations and leadership impact. When I coach clients who are preparing for a speech, I encourage them to focus on what the audience needs, first and foremost. Almost immediately, the clients’ fears quickly subside—they feel more at ease, before, during, and after.

So, as we celebrate Professional Speakers Celebration Day, let’s remember: Success in speaking is always about honoring the audience. Audience first = fear last! 🌟



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