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Some people can inspire change in others simply by the power of their words. The term that best fits these people is inspirational. People fitting this description often choose to help others by telling their stories at seminars and workshops. Becoming an inspirational speaker entails a little more than conventional nine to five jobs. To succeed as a speaker you must first and foremost be inspirational, along with other attributes and responsibilities of the job.
The definition of "inspire" is to motivate people to do something or encourage them to perform better or with more enthusiasm. The inspirational speaker strives to do this by presenting a succinct, motivational and inspiring message to the audience. A successful speaker compels the audience to make a change in their lives while being engaging and interacting with the audience. The inspirational speaker works with a booking agent or seminar director to set up an engagement to present a speech that focuses on the overall meeting topic or agenda. Presenting speeches with integrity and avoiding false statements for the purpose of audience manipulation is a hallmark of a responsible speaker.
Inspirational speakers must be expert communicators first and foremost. While many people have inspiring stories, not all of them possess the communication skills to convey their messages to an audience. A successful speaker has good presentation skills. An inspirational speaker must be adept at handling presentation tools such as video equipment, microphones and visual displays. A speaker also needs to be skilled in using presentation software to effectively convey the message. An inspirational speaker displays poise, confidence and superior articulation during a presentation.
Inspirational speakers come from all walks of life. There is no formal college major for speakers. If inspirational speaking is your future goal, however, majoring in communications might help you prepare for the life. Courses in speech, communications or even sociology might also help you. Courses in psychology can also help a speaker connect to the audience. Toastmasters International offers an advanced speaking program for aspiring public speakers, and BecomeASpeaker is a website devoted to helping speakers develop a professional speaking career by offering seminars and classes in all areas of public speaking. Experienced professional speakers sometimes mentor new speakers as they learn the ropes of their vocation.
Becoming a Speaker
Finding a direct route to becoming an inspirational speaker can be difficult. Some speakers find success by writing blogs and books to gain credibility. Starting at small venues such as rotary clubs or local libraries can help in gaining experience and provide networking opportunities. Other speakers join speaking organizations such as Toastmasters International in an effort to hone their skills and gain experience and speaking confidence. Locating a venue can be difficult, however, joining a professional speaking organization, such as the National Speaking Association can help with placement and advertising your services. Inspirational speakers often speak at graduations, conferences, workshops and empowerment seminars.
Adele Burney started her writing career in 2009 when she was a featured writer in "Membership Matters," the magazine for Junior League. She is a finance manager who brings more than 10 years of accounting and finance experience to her online articles. Burney has a degree in organizational communications and a Master of Business Administration from Rollins College.