Below is the intro text to a survey to capture data and insights on what people are and aren’t getting paid for public speaking.
Not supporting or compensating speakers fairly is a topic I get fired up about. The same concept could be applied to any unpaid community work for ‘free exposure’. Champions and Ambassador programmes spring to mind as examples where members to free work.
Apart from Open Speaker Fee Project being a very important initiative, I also highlight it because it’s a great focus and outcome for a community to have. We don’t have to come together to talk (in forums or chat spaces), we can come together to do and share research to enable a better future.
The MicDrop Open Speaker Fee Project
This initiative is for everyone who wants to end the guessing game when it comes to speaker fees. If you’re tired of being asked to ‘speak for exposure’ and fed up of negotiating your worth, help us end the debate once and for all.
By anonymously sharing how much you have (or haven’t) been paid to speak and by who, our aim is to create more transparency around speaking fees so thought leaders feel comfortable charging what they’re worth.
We have already collected speaking fee data from the likes of Amazon, Bloomberg and Mastercard, now we need your help! When we have enough results (we’re aiming for 200 engagements), we will email you with our findings.
Ever been paid to public speak?
Over the last 20 years I’ve been lucky to work with some brilliant businesses, schools and charities. Whether it’s a keynote, moderating a panel discussion or hosting an event, I love doing it and am constantly looking to improve.
I’d estimate that about 50% of the events I’ve spoken at I’ve been paid for. The remaining half I’ve done because it’s marketing for a projects, community building or supporting a shared mission.
I recognise how my privilege - as well as the projects I’ve been involved with - have given me these opportunities, which is why although it is still an important part of my income, I also do my best to help talented new speakers get on stage. I actually think there’s an interesting business opportunity around a speaker/talent agency for changemakers… let me know if you’d like to collaborate
What ‘speakers’ get paid is a bit of a mystery which is why I’m supporting this Alex Merry project that has come out of the excellent MicDrop community I’m part of. The Open Speaker Fee Project is gathering 200 anonymous paid speaker info - fees, negotiations, payment terms to create insights and transparency in this space.
If you’ve been paid to speak, add to the project here > LinkedIn
If you’ve invited me to speak at your event, thank you