Having invested quite a bit of money over the years in my own training & education in the recruiting profession and in the last eight years or so in the digital marketing arena, sometimes you need to be real with where you spend your time, money and understand ultimately the type of trainers and training that can benefit you the most. Having been hired to speak at conferences, I certainly feel I have the right to offer critique here and what’s certainly worked the best for me in the past. Note: I am not referring specifically to speaking personalities and we all have our favorites (myself included) but if you look deep at your favorites, see if they pass this checklist.
1. Relative. Are they speaking from a point of view that is relative. Translation, does this apply to my business today? And is the trainer in your business today?
2. Real Credentials. It’s certainly difficult to gauge if the trainer is the real deal today with online embellishments and LinkedIn profiles on steroids. What does buzz say? Does this person have a track record of speaking, training and do they have the endorsements to prove it.
3. Art of Story telling. At the end of the day, you will not remember the 9th step of process X but you will remember the story behind it. Audiences are moved by stories, preferably real ones. If the speaker has a gift to connect with you emotionally about their message. You will retain it.
4. Comedic – I have never attended a session in the recruiting industry where I was ‘wowed’ by the session and the speaker wasn’t funny, had good delivery and was genuine. Let’s face it, we need to be entertained while we learn, this keeps our mind open, allows us to be happy. It allows us to sit 90-minutes without moving. The speaker has to be funny.
5. Original – this is the probably the hardest trait to appreciate. Most speakers struggle with making their content original or packaging it in an original way. I find the most hired, most successful speakers continue to develop their message, their craft, constantly bringing new content to the table. They are staying current and in most cases ahead of the curve with technology. Most of the time the process doesn’t change in our business but the method in which we move through the process does. I am not interested in hearing a speaker tell me to ‘Get back on the Phone’ in 2015 because that’s what they said in 1996.