It takes a lot to make it in business, especially the business of motivational speaking. With more and more people throwing their hats into the growing ring of 'experts who speak', I have a few thoughts on continuing to succeed in this business.
1. Hang out with really cool people
I've been speaking professionally for 20 years, so it's safe to say that I'm not going anywhere. My friends in the industry are also not going anywhere, so choose people you really click with and invest time and energy on nurturing those relationships. By the way, I define 'cool' as people that are real, fun, smart, and people I WANT to hang out with! (Feel free to define 'cool' in your own way).
2. Collaborate, don't compete
When you collaborate, you uplift, support, and work together to make people (including yourself) better. When you compete, feelings can get hurt because if one person wins, someone else has to lose. Collaborating means that when you 'win' a speaking engagement, you then have an opportunity to share names of your collaborators with the meeting planner. That way, you win – your friends win – and the meeting planner wins by not having to start from scratch when planning the next year's event.
3. Share the good, bad and everything else that comes up
The great thing about collaborating with cool people is the level of trust that is created. When you trust people, you can let your hair down, show your vulnerability, get feedback or re-assurance that you are on the right path. Then when it's time to celebrate, the good vibes are that much more meaningful knowing what you had to go through to get where you are.
4. Be open
The nice thing about collaborating with cool people in the same industry is that they may have answers that you weren't aware of. Be open to feedback, be open to new ideas, be open to going deeper with the collaboration.
I for one am grateful for all the people I continue to meet on this journey of professional motivational speaking. But, I am especially grateful to the people whom I collaborate and celebrate with. These are my girls, my family.
From your happy to collaborate motivational speaker Marilyn Sherman