I meet more and more people who want to become speakers. Whether they want to make a full career of it or they simply want to leverage speaking opportunities to get more business for their company, it seems like many people are trying to break into the public speaking world. I was recently asked by someone what the most exciting thing about public speaking is for me. What is it that makes me want to stand up in front of 5 or 500 people and say something?
It's not being on a stage. There are plays and musicals that could accomplish that for me. (Okay, maybe not musicals.)
It's not saying something. I can say things in any other venue, including talking to myself.
It's not to earn a living. There are plenty of ways I could make money.
It's not to travel. In fact, when I travel, I'm known to be gone for as little time as possible, sometimes catching a red eye back home.
It's not to sell stuff. Speaking appearances don't always convert into sales.
Why do I like public speaking? Because I like to share an idea.
To me, this is where the difference lies between public speakers and professional speakers. Technically, if you say anything, you can be a public speaker. But if you share ideas that can make people think, then you have a chance at earning a living. Discover a big idea and share it.
Lou Heckler said:
Workshops teach skills, and speeches are designed to prompt thinking.
If you want people to clap for you, go play kickball. If you have something to say, start saying it. You'll find the stage eventually.