In college at Western Washington University I was an Instructor’s Assistant (IA) for the Communications 101 class. The class was about learning to speak in public. Think Toastmasters but for college kids. I taught the class with a parter for one quarter, then solo for two quarters. After that, I taught the IA’s how to be IA’s. I loved the experience, and as a result, I learned to truly love public speaking.
Since then, I’ve spoken publicly as often as I can. Thankfully, I’ve had plenty of opportunities to present and speak publicly during my career.
In February, a (previous) boss and I traveled to a social media conference in Vegas. Many of the speakers covered topics that forced me to think, grow, and learn. The others, well, not so much. I found myself thinking I could do a better job than some of the presenters. So, I approached the organizer of the event and asked if I could speak at the next summit. After submitting a proposal, I was invited to speak at the Social Media Strategies Summit in Boston this fall.
And now on to the point: I’m kinda freaked out. In good way. “I’ve got that “excited/scared” feeling. Like 98% excited, 2% scared. Or maybe it’s more – It could be two – it could be 98% scared, 2% excited but that’s what makes it so intense, it’s so – confusing. I can’t really figure it out.” I’m in a line up that features speakers from Sesame Street, ESPN and Dunkin Donuts. It’s a pretty big deal.
Just so you know, there’s two jobs I’ve always wanted: public speaker or consultant. In either case, people pay you to talk to them. If there’s one thing I’m good at, it’s talking.