Becoming a motivational speaker is one of the most rewarding things a person can do in life. Not only is it financially rewarding, it bring about a great sense of satisfaction in knowing that what you do for a living, helps countless people around the world. In today’s day and age, it is rare to find a profession as noble as this.
But the question that veers on the mind of anyone who ever wanted to take up such a career is how to go about doing that? How do you become a motivational speaker? There is no school that you can attend to qualify as one and neither is there a degree that is to be earned.
Getting started with the basics
Before you become a motivational speaker, you must become an effective public speaker first. A big part of a motivational speaker’s job is to speak in front of a live audience and motivate them to better their lives. If you do not have the speaking skills to communicate your message clearly, then you can certainly say goodbye to your dreams of becoming a motivational speaker.
The easiest way to get started would be to watch a speech by your favorite motivational speaker and download a transcript of that. Most such things are available to download all over the Internet.
Memorize this speech by heart and practice speaking it out loud, paying attention to your tone, intonation and the rate of speech. You can also practice speaking this in front of the mirror so you can notice any flaws in your body language or in the expression on your face.
Sooner or later you have to go out and speak in front of the public and it is better to do so in front of a friendly audience, sort of like a training session. Toastmasters, a worldwide non-profit organization was created just for this purpose with the sole goal of helping member improve their public speaking and presentation skills.
Joint your local Toastmasters Group and regularly attend meetings. Not only will you be able to speak in front of other members, thereby increasing your public speaking confidence, you will also receive helpful critique, which will allow you to develop your skills much faster.
Develop your ideas
While there are superstar motivational speakers like Tony Robbins that can speak on a multitude of topics with effortless ease, a majority of motivators choose to focus on one area of expertise.
For instance, someone who has had real life experience in a business scenario will restrict his or her work to that area. A high school coach on the other hand will restrict himself to sports related speeches.
To develop your own material, you must ask some honest questions to yourself.
– What kind of professional experience have I acquired in life?
– What kind of life lessons learned by me, do I think others will benefit from?
– What unique perspectives can I share with my audience?
– Where lies the strongest base of my knowledge?
– What compelling, original ideas can I generate from all that I know?
– Have I received any academic training about which I can talk about as an expert?
The bottom line is that anything you share with your audience in the form of a speech has one singular purpose. To provide value add to them and impart knowledge that benefits them in the long run. If you have nothing to say or do not come across as someone who knows what they are talking about, then it will not work at all.
Developing writing skills
This is one crucial step that many budding motivational speakers completely forgo. Whether it is a movie, a TV show or a speech, writing is everything. This is why politicians have professional speech writers on their staff to do this job for them.
Unless you have a personal friendship with the White House Press Secretary, you will have to sit and write down your speeches yourself and if you do not possess enough skill, your speeches will come out weak and will bore the audience.
The easiest way to improve your speech writing skill is to enroll in a creative writing class or attend a creative writing workshop near you. These help you gain feedback on your writing even before you have debuted it in front of a live audience.
How to start a motivational speaker business?
As much as you want to motivate the masses and help them get the most out of their lives, you also need to pay your bills and if you want to do motivational speaking for a living, then you need to start a business.
To begin with, you do not need any certifications or licenses to become a professional motivational speaker. To make things easier, at least in the beginning, it is however recommended that you try and get the Certified Professional Speaker certification from The National Speakers Association. This will help you land gigs easier than otherwise as the association is very selective about awarding this designation and does so only to deserving candidates.
You must also keep in mind that becoming a successful motivational speaker takes time. You probably would end up giving hundreds of speeches before you get your first well paying job. This is why you must have a plan charted out and self motivate yourself to stick to that path.
The important part is to keep working in the field, even if you are not getting the kind of money you want. In the early days, do not shy away from doing free gigs. The end result will be worth it as there is never a dearth of work for a motivational speaker and successful speakers can command a hefty fee while being invited to speak at important conferences and seminars.
Apart from that, you can earn additional revenue by writing books, releasing audiobooks and making videos as well.
As you can see, the career of a motivational speaker, when charted out with care, can provide immense returns while enabling you to help others better their life. Are you ready to do the hard work to get there?