Speakers beware: Scammers are using a church event as the basis for stealing your money

As a speaker, I process a lot of speaking invitations, so I was intrigued when I received one from a UK-based church that was hosting an event and wanted me to speak. Other organizations have brought me to international locations, so I responded to this one with questions. Bishop Allan Willson (who signed the email) responded with complete answers. I also asked a UK-based colleague to look into the church. He let me know it appeared to be a legitimate institution.

I got fairly far down the road with the engagement. Bishop Willson handed me off to Edward Smith, who identified himself as president of the event organizing committee.… Read More »

FIR Interview: Eric Bergman, author of Five Steps to Conquer ‘Death by PowerPoint’

Five Steps to Conquer Death by PowerPointIf you hope to communicate effectively with any audience, the best thing you can change about your presentation is to never, ever, use a slideware program to develop your presentation content, says Eric Bergman.

No PowerPoint. No Keynote. No Prezi. No SlideRocket. None.

The author of Five Steps to Conquer ‘Death by PowerPoint’, published in May 2012, Bergman is passionate in his belief that the procedures we habitually use during presentations are dysfunctional and badly need changing.

If you want to be more effective, he says, you must separate the spoken word and the written word - regardless of whether you’re the sender or the… Read More »

FIR Book Review: Stellar Presentations, by Shel Israel

Stellar PresentationsTrafcom News podcaster Donna Papacosta reviews Shel Israel‘s new book, “Stellar Presentations: An Entrepreneur’s Guide to Giving Great Talks.” From the book description:

“Tech StartUps are built on dreams, teams and technology. But to turn vision into reality you really need to be skilled at presenting to investors, the media and increasingly at conferences. Stellar Presentations explains the strategy of the public presentation. More than that it is filled with handy tips at how to be memorable and persuasive when talking from the front of the room. Author Shel Israel [Naked Conversations, Twitterville] is an accomplished speaker who… Read More »

Just for you: A discount code for Social Intranet Summit

Social Intranet SummitI’m speaking later this month at the Social Intranet Summit—keynoting it, in fact—and I’m thrilled to be able to ofer a discount code so you can get in for a lower price.

Register using the promo code SISVSHEL and you’ll get a 20% discount. The price is $599, but it’ll cost you about $120 less than that.

That’s a great deal to hear the lineup of great speakers the folks at Thoughtfarmer—the social intranet platform, sponsors of the summit—have lined up. My good friends Toby Ward, Thomas Vander Wal and Ron Shewchuk will be there, along with the always thought-provoking Stowe Boyd. I don’t personally now the other speakers, but I’m… Read More »

I get paid to speak because I paid my dues by speaking without pay

There has been a surge in conversation lately about organizations that solicit people to speak at their conferences without compensation. These organizations are generally labled as “disreputable” and other less-than-flattering adjectives.

I am frequently asked to speak without pay. I’m usually informed that the talk will be an opportunity for exposure. In most cases, I explain that I’m a professional speaker—that is, a significant portion of my income derives from speaking engagements—and I politely decline. I don’t write posts complaining about the fact that I was asked. In fact, explaining that I speak frequently and am paid for it… Read More »

Five places you can catch me in May

I’m speaking at a few upcoming events that are open to the public. If you live in (or will be near) these places, I’d be honored if you came to see me and supported the sponsoring organizations.

IABC Detroit

Shel HoltzIn September, I’m conducting a workshop for IABC Detroit on how companies can ethically, transparently and profitably tap into their employees’ social networks (rather than block them). In advance of the September 22 workshop, I’m meeting up with Detroiters on May 5 (while I’ll be in Detroit anyway for Ragan’s Corporate Communicators Conference). The chapter is calling it “Cinco with Shel.” It’s an informal gathering, no formal… Read More »

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