Motivational Speakers: Transform Your Conference into a Megaphone for Success

Motivational speakers are traffickers in hope.

Motivational speaker profile for your consideration…

They are a perfect fit for a thoroughly planned and thought-through conference of any kind. They create a space for renewal and revisiting of a team’s vision, core values, performance behaviours and even to tackle uncomfortable issues, the so-called white elephants in the room.

BONUS: Relaxing Music for Events & Conferences (11 Hour Playlist)

How Motivational Speakers Can Transform Your Conference

  1. Motivational speakers specialise in “Vitamin M” deficiency.
  2. They are the megaphones for success.
  3. Funny motivational speakers use the power of humour.
  4. They have to be grounded in credibility.
  5. Motivational speakers launch creative themes with inspirational storylines.
  6. Ensure careful selection and motivational matchmaking.
  7. Motivational speakers travel the globe from event to event.
  8. Are their messages really “not lasting”? 

Value-added corporate conferences are ideal to refresh a company vision and/or address challenges of the day. Some companies make the mistake to dilute these golden opportunities into a series of silly fun and games.

Here are some thoughts about the bookings and potential value that motivational speakers can bring to your next conference.

1.  Motivational Speakers Specialise in “Vitamin M” Deficiency

Motivational speakers are often used when there is a “Vitamin M” deficiency, and they promote and unpack performance principles through their keynote speeches.

A lack of “vitamin M” or more commonly known as “motivation” can create big problems in the world of business.

A demoralised organisation is predictably running low on the mental energy needed to be successful. It is a common course for this vitamin injection to take place at conferences, corporate meetings, and business events to boost productivity.

Corporate events come in all shapes and sizes including teambuilding, awards, product launches and those leaning more towards business strategy, etc. A well-organised conference with top-notch motivational speakers can be part of an assembly line of streamlined programmes, aligned values, business strategy and people inspiration.

2.  They are the Megaphones for Success

No field of endeavour has arguably advanced the hypothesis of success more than the motivational speakers’ industry. Organisations with meritocracy cultures almost always are successful industry leaders. There is a sense of irony. Often the most successful organisations book motivational speakers regularly when they arguably don’t need morale boosters.

But they do this on the understanding that inspiration can never be in over-supply.

Using motivational speakers is a “best practice” and a “must-have” for the annual conferences of many companies. These gift-of-the-gab orators have refined the skilful art of inspiration. There are also those organisations with a low tolerance for “outside interference”. They would rather assign the budget to things like conference gifts or music bands for entertainment. There is no right or wrong. Some companies opt for a stringent budget that is limited to chocolates on pillows in the conference rooms. 

Knowledge is power, they say, and with great content in a motivational speech, it can lead to a strong surge in confidence levels. “Outside” perspective from motivational speakers can add great value. Aspirations, objectives and goals of individual audience members are often not in tandem with overall group objectives and the right inspirational message can align these.

Thus, the process of motivational speaking has a psychological component that has an equal impact on a group than the technical work components – in other words, speaking to both the work and human element. Psychologist Bruce Tuckman has referred to a first potential phase in team building as “Storming”. This is where the one in charge is expected to pull out all stops to ensure that individual objectives do not violate or vitiate joint objectives or undermine the efficiency of the team.

Motivational speakers can play a forthright role in the “one direction for all” message.

Tuckman has, rather euphemistically, termed difficult conversations during this phase as “Storm Dialogues”.

However, it does not mean that conference messages should bulldoze audiences into abject submission. A demotivated and demoralised grouping of people will rarely achieve anything of note. Interactive and transformational speeches work well.

3.  Funny Motivational Speakers Use the Power of Humour

Funny motivational speakers can fortify any angle or subject through the use of legitimate, respectful, clean humour in any conference scenario. Humour can re-vitalise team spirit and remove the sting out of uncomfortable conversations, especially when deployed in a keynote address.

Humour can soften sober reality checks. It can kick in the door to get attention. The strategic use of good-old-fashioned funniness involves both invited speakers and internal presenters. Some just don’t get this one. They confuse humour with shock value or brazenness.

Funniness exists to strengthen message delivery and to lift the spirits.

It’s not about offending people or getting them to squirm in their seats. Most professionals strive towards adding wholesome humour value to those listening which can positively influence even the stiffest upper lips.

4.  They Have to be Grounded in Credibility

Audiences across industries prefer to hear presentations from motivational speakers who know not only their subject matter well, but what is situationally relevant. This is how to establish credibility through podium performance.

One can make two interesting observations.

It would seem that an audience buys into the speaker first and only then into the message.

So, making a favourable first impression early on can make the speech sail or sink. But this is merely an entry-level requirement. The way motivational speakers establish authenticity is consequential. Authenticity doesn’t necessarily imply a famous name, neither individuals with or without formal qualifications. The podium is open to merit.

Second, there is again a bit of irony to point out here.

Motivational speakers often have more credibility than someone from within the organisation.

It’s just one of those interesting psychological phenomena’s that starts in childhood. Has there been any teenager in history that has embraced the wisdom of their parents? They would rather take exactly the same advice to heart when hearing it from someone else. That is why there is a saying that a prophet doesn’t get recognised in her/his own town. It is just a fact, although strange.

It, therefore, stands to reason that an organisation should now and then source external communicators and ideas for the sake of buy-in and highlighting pre-determined outcomes.

Just as outstanding leaders in the corporate world do not obligatorily have formal qualifications, neither do all motivational speakers. Having said this, it is non-negotiable that they should communicate solid doctrine as oppose to “pie in the sky” nonsense talks.

How much better to select those who can apply and convey the skills and knowledge gained through their own practical experience in the corporate world? This makes their subject matter real.

5.  Motivational Speakers Launch Creative Themes with Inspirational Storylines

Audiences embrace stories where adversity was overcome with determination and the resulting improvement and proverbial happy endings. Real-life business difficulties or workplace challenges can be addressed through keynote presentations together with solutions and new possibilities.

With a good dose of implementation focus included, it will make a dent in any negative group’s prevailing pessimism.

There is one mantra that is being regularly shared in the speaking fraternity: “Make the World Better”.

Stories are the nuclear bomb in the arsenal of motivational speakers.

These are what audiences will remember. Impelling motivational speakers are known for their drive to improve things. These free expressions of personal experience and belief benefit audiences and can encourage thoroughly. Charisma might be a key trait for those on stage, but it’s far from being enough.

Sophisticated business audiences listen with discernment and therefore communicators have to have their ducks in a row when it gets to great content and delivery.

Employees of corporate companies often feel stress because of market uncertainty and bad economic times. How do you retain staff and keep the morale up in these times?

Interventions and solutions are often rolled out at conferences, which can include many things like rewards and the popular option of bringing in motivational speakers. They deliver inspirational keynote presentations that can predictably have a positive impact on the audience’s morale. Evaluations and feedback received at the end of events confirm this.

Delegates often vote and say that they feel energised and motivated after world-class talks and ready to take on the challenges back at the office.

A note of caution: Management mostly comprises of the driving type personalities on the move and rightly so. Be careful not to make the conference itself so pressurised and stressful that the opportunities for reflection and yes, a bit of breathing, is lost.

Cramming information and inspiration into the heads of tired delegates without pacing the schedule can cause lost opportunities and a waste of resources.

6.  Ensure Careful Selection and Motivational Matchmaking

An ill-informed booking of a motivational speaker can lead to red faces and an unimpressed audience.

There are many event representatives that assist planners in their selections. They have seen the communicators in action on stage before and assist clients to make well-informed choices and to filter through a list of potentials.

Once a selection is made, it’s time for the legal contract and in-detail technical specifications. Some motivational speakers might ask astronomic sums of money for one-hour keynote speeches, and it’s advisable to speak about fees and budgets early on.

Many keynoters and companies alike make the mistake to have many conversations, customisations and teleconferences, only to find out they are worlds apart on the numbers.

Then there is the famous “Google it”. Motivational speakers don’t sit and wait for the call but do advertising for themselves. There are untold ways to find their names out there. The World Wide Web has levelled the playing field for everyone.

Word-of-mouth testimonies of whom to book remain the favourite option during the sourcing process.

On a competitive speaking circuit, there are increasingly more choices and fewer groupings that control any market. The competition is healthy and robust. Busy motivational speakers use a mix between closing their own deals and having agencies that represent them. Agencies do charge for their services, and usually, it is a percentage of the speaking gig that they assign.

But what are some things to look for when researching for motivational speakers? Look for the ones whose speeches are effective, innovative, and hit the fertile soil of willing audiences. Superior content and style can attack any despondency and pessimism. At events, an audience sits on the other side of the podium in a waiting room of sorts. It is time for introspection, to get challenged on attitudes and energised even on the basics of business.

Remarkable presentations give people opportunities to examine their motives and flush out the negativity.

Tenacity is dusted off and the path to renewed focus is paved. In turbulent times, inspirational conferences rejuvenate execution-weary audiences.

7.  Motivational Speakers Travel the Globe from Event to Event

Motivational speakers who are regularly booked wisely travel to an event or conference venue the day before (if possible). This helps them to test equipment, anticipate technical challenges and to be rested and in good shape when it’s time to get on stage. It also removes the risks of delayed flights, flat tyres and so forth.

Ranging from one speaker to another, there might be additional expenses to consider beforehand. Things like expensive airport parking, vehicle wear and tear, toll roads and even unexpected traffic fines can impact the budget. Ok, traffic fines with rental cars need to be claimed back from the motivational speakers who occurred them.

8.  Are Their Messages Really “Not Lasting”?

The tough realities of the workplace can mean that employees find themselves being “down-in-the-dumps”.

Unfortunately, there is a belief amongst some in the world of business that motivation or messages from motivational speakers do not endure. A counter-argument can build on Zig Ziglar’s original push-back against this type of thinking. The cleaning of an office does not last forever, but does that mean that everyone is going to stop cleaning offices? Of course, not! Negativity is to be “cleaned up” regularly. More than ever, there is a growing awareness of the adverse effects of low morale.

Motivational speakers with solid doctrine can do wonders for organisational motivation.