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PSASA 2015 Award Winners...

The Hall of Fame award (SASHoF) This is the second highest award that the PSASA can give;. Induction of an expert into the Hall of Fame constitutes recognition of lifetime achievement, as a speaker, consultant, mentor or trainer – all the pursuits that we indulge in, in following our professions. We can allocate two of these places in the Hall of Fame each year and this year, we did just that. The two guys who were the happy inductees to the Hall of Fame, have both been professional speakers for many years and each has done more than achieve recognition for himself – each of them has contributed to the industry in his own, unique way. First, a man who is not a member of the PSASA, but who displays all of the expertise, unique abilities and proven track record that exemplifies the iconic status of previous recipients of this award; A speaker with a totally unique style, the first recipient has been right at the peak of the speaking industry for twenty years, making his own indelible mark on the minds of thousands of conference attendees in South Africa and abroad, every year. His forthright style and his humour have at some stage touched us all. The tagline on his blog is ‘Everyone’s entitled to my opinion’. Reading it resolved a big question for me, namely, how to respond when people say ‘How are you?’ His comment – “It’s a greeting, not a frikken question!” I was delighted to induct Gavin Sharples into the Hall of Fame. Gavin has written a number of books, recorded CD’s and makes these, together with products supporting his presentations, available for sale on his web site. The second inductee to the Hall...

PSASA Isandlwana Expedition...

A small band from the PSASA visited Isandlwana – the scene of the greatest defeat, in colonial times, of the British army. This report will tell you a little of the tourism experience and reflect briefly upon the lessons gleaned by speakers, from the stimulating talks delivered on the killing grounds by a master of the speaker’s craft, Rob Caskie. We arrived for lunch on Friday at the guest house that is attached to the lodge, a half kilometre or so from the main lodge – named after Fugitives Drift, where many of those who were fleeing the slaughter which had taken place at Isandhlwana, were killed by the pursuing Zulus. Looking North across the valley which leads the Umzinyathi River past the site of the Lodge, one sees, rising above the plains and the hills of Zululand, the menacing outline of the mountain that was soaked with the blood of almost five thousand warriors from both armies. The outlook does not suggest  the unspeakable violence that occurred one hundred and fifty years before; there are thorn trees aplenty, grassy plains wandered by water buck, thousands of ‘candelabra’ aloes with their fiery blossoms. Lazily but elegantly, giraffe wander amongst the trees, nibbling the green shoots on the high branches. The guest house is the epitome of luxury. Visit the web site and gaze with envy upon the comfort of the lounge, the roaring fire in the grate, the long, gleaming dining-room table within, where we enjoyed great food, good wine and stimulating company. View the boma without, where we lunched beneath the thatch. Canvas chairs encircle the open fireplace alongside the pool, where we enjoyed cold beer and rich red wine before the evening meal. The food, I might...

Newsletter September 2013 – Speak for a Change...

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Speakers Dinner Forum with Dr Graeme Codrington...

To share in more of Dr Graeme Codrington’s speaking experience, diarise the evening of 28 October as you won’t want to miss this.   As a professional member of the PSASA, you are invited to join your colleagues for an evening of professional and personal development on Monday, 28 October.  This will be hosted by Dr Graeme Codrington, who is South Africa’s only CSP and FPSA (Fellow of the PSA UK).  As a Fellow in the UK, Graeme ran a series of successful events for the UK’s top professional speakers and has volunteered to host one for us here in South Africa (hopefully more will follow). There will be no cost, except the price of your dinner.  The event will take place at Melrose Arch in Johannesburg (exact venue to be confirmed once the numbers are in – minimum of eight participants). The format is simple.  Over dinner, we will do three things: Introduce ourselves to each other – a chance to hone your elevator pitch and get to know your fellow PSASA professionals.  Discover areas of synergy, network and find ways to help each other get more work. Have a discussion around a topic critical to our success as speakers – we will ask one of the participants to prepare a short (15 minute) insight into an area of our profession at which they are known to be world class.  Graeme and this person will then lead a discussion to help all of us improve in this area. Share your best tip on a key issue – This was the favourite part of the sessions Graeme ran in the UK. On 28 October, the topic we will discuss will be your best tip for getting repeat bookings and building...

Are you future-proofing your speaking business?...

Thanks Adolph Kaestner for documenting some key learnings from Graeme Codrington’s challenging presentation to the Gauteng Chapter last month.  Graeme’s talk touched on many of the eight speaker competencies listed in the right hand column of this newsletter.  Now for Adolph’s perspective:  Every now and again we need an AAK (Attitude Adjustment Klap) and boy, oh boy, did I get one from A-list speaker and PSASA Member Dr Graeme Codrington CSP FPSA recently.  So why was his presentation to us so profound, and what was it that has caused me to do a 360 degree rethink and evaluation of what I am doing in the professional speaking space? Well, Graeme posed some really soul searching questions which I share with you below. Short and simple to understand, but not so comfortable to answer if you are 100% truthful with yourself.  So here goes. Q #1 – Are you Relevant? Is what you are saying (content) relevant – up to date – the best of practice information available?  Are you adding value to the information (not just regurgitating other people’s information freely available on the web) and will it be relevant to the people you address? Who is your audience / your target market?  Who are they, is this your niche? Is what you do or say relevant to your audience?  What does your audience want from you? What is it they will be prepared to pay for?  Are you attending the conferences they do to find out what they are after?  Are you reading the books they are reading? Q # 2 – Are you Excellent? Are you as good as you think you are?  Who are you measuring yourself against? Are you a world class as speaker /...

Change your mindset to survive volatile disruptive times...

Professional member of the PSASA, Dr Graeme Codrington (CSP, FPSA, DBA), recently published a TomorrowToday blog called Making sense of sense-making, which is well-worth a read, considering that many of us help our clients to make sense of their world – a radically changing one at that. I have taken the liberty (with permission) of including the list of mindset shifts leaders need to make, from the bottom of the article.  Use it as a self-assessment tool,  and spot the gaps for change and growth in yourself. “The primary focus of leadership in volatile, disruptive times should be to make sense of the times for their team. The good news is that most good leaders should be able to easily shift into this success-building mindset. But the key is simply that: a change in mindset. This mindset shift involves at least the following: Recognise that we live in an era of remarkable change and disruption that is not going to go away for at least another decade. Doing nothing is not an option. Do not look for one-size-fits-all solutions. Best principles are much better than best practices (in fact, best practices can be downright dangerous). You need to unlearn and relearn – not just once, but over and over again. Question your assumptions. What got you here won’t get you there. New leadership competencies are required. (This might mean you’re not as good as you think you are as a leader). You must embrace paradox. Think right-right instead of right-wrong. Learn new ways of thinking that rely on looking for new patterns and connections. Push your own personal boundaries. Every day. You will never have enough information ever again. You can’t let this stop you from deciding, and acting....

Motivational Speakers – How Adaptive Are You?...

HOW ADAPTIVE ARE YOU? According to storytelling expert Dr Petro Janse van Vuuren, who is also president of the Gauteng PSASA Chapter and was speaker at last month’s meeting, we live in volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous times (VUCA).  Petro specialises in helping organisations to tell their stories and in so doing to become more connected and adaptive, which is essential when coping with a world that is changing right under our feet, and the PSASA is no exception. Through some dynamic and fascinating group process work, Petro illustrated how when we connect with each other and adapt to circumstances, we become more flexible and adopt a common rhythm as a group.  There is a resonance that is created when we move out of our heads – from a state of flight, fright and resistance – to engagement with other people as human beings.  This is what the world needs. This is what the PSASA needs. From the energy in the room and the looks on member’s faces, there was a definite feeling of togetherness, a new sense of cohesiveness, and movement in a common direction.  Petro has since received over ten offers from members to contribute to the running of the chapter! A trick for moving from constipation to flow…… you might want to give it a try! Here is a simple exercise you might want to try from Petro’s presentation that really got us thinking (and feeling, and smiling!).  So many of us respond to queries, questions and suggestions with a, “No, but…..”, and ‘but’ is a block that leads to constipation.  Just for a day, try saying, “Yes, and……”, which opens up a flow of positive constructive energy and makes us more adaptive.  The positive feeling...

PSASA Speakers in the News...

OUR PSASA SPEAKERS IN THE NEWS BETWEEN JANUARY AND END-JUNE 2013 SUMMARY IN TABLE (approximate), SEE DETAILS AND LINKS TO INTERVIEW BELOW: NAME TOPIC/SPECIALITY NO. OF MEDIA APPEARANCES Bertie du Plessis Business Advisor  7 Douglas Kruger Expert positioning  29 Nikki Bush Parenting/education/future  14 Celynn Erasmus Nutrition/wellness  9 Fred Felton Social media  3 Nicky Abdinor  Clinical Psychologist  4   DETAILS FOR THOSE WHO ARE INTERESTED IN CHECKING OUT THEIR FELLOW MEMBERS’ EXPERT POSITIONING: BERTIE DU PLESSIS www.mindpilot.co.za Maak so as jou omelet nie uniek is (trsl: Do this when your omelet is not unique). May 18, Rapport newspaper, review by Riette Rust of Your Small Business Nightmare And How to Wake Up: http://www.rapport.co.za/Boeke/Nuus/Maak-so-as-jou-omelet-nie-uniek-is-20130517 Welfare could be Gini in the bottle. May 10, Mail & Guardian, reporting on a research paper on measuring inequality in South Africa which I co-authored: http://mg.co.za/article/2013-05-10-00-welfare-could-be-gini-in-the-bottle (This has led to a lively discussion in the letters column of Mail & Guardian as is witnessed by this letter from well-known commentator Rian Malan: http://mg.co.za/article/2013-06-07-gini-bias-denialists-defeated-by-google/ The paper originally published by the Dept of Economics University of KwaZulu-Natal will now be republished in popularized form in the book South African Myths Exposed, by Stuart Pennington of ww.sagoodnews.co.za. Small Firm Nightmare. April 3: fin24.com, review by Michael Mann of Your Small Business NIghtmare and How to Wake Up: http://www.fin24.com/Entrepreneurs/Small-firm-nightmare-20130402 Do you need a BOS? March 20, report on How to Write Your Business Card On Steroids: fin24.com http://www.fin24.com/Entrepreneurs/Resources/Do-you-need-a-BOS-20130320 Expert Advisor for fin24.com’s Entrepreneur column. http://www.fin24.com/Entrepreneurs/Experts/Bertie-du-Plessis-MindPilot-20121019. You may find various answers to questions posed by the public, for instance: Is a Chinese firm a good JV partner? http://www.fin24.com/Entrepreneurs/Question-And-Answers/Is-a-Chinese-firm-a-good-JV-partner-20130613. Or: Give up or keep going? http://www.fin24.com/Entrepreneurs/Question-And-Answers/Give-up-or-keep-going-20130411 Read This! Blog on fin24.com  (running since May 2008, total of 826 posts, 56 posts to date in 2013). Latest entry: http://blogs.fin24.com/bertieduplessis/2013/06/20/how-do-you-know-when-to-pull-the-plug/ I am also an...

Are you using the tools you have in your speaker’s toolkit?...

Despite the fact that we live on the Southern-most tip of Africa, miles from any other speakers associations, professional speakers have many tools at their disposal.  How we use them, or commit to using them is entirely up to us.  Let’s take a look at the list: The Annual Convention has a hidden curriculum – have you noticed? Always a great place to meet up with people you may not have seen in a long time and to be exposed to new and fresh ideas.  For people who spend their lives on the conference circuit, it can be hard to impress speakers at their own industry conference.  I have come to the conclusion that in listening to the best and worst of presentations, there is always a lesson or a message that you can take away, even if it is a reminder of what not to do! I hope the recent convention flicked a switch for you in some way, shape or form. I have to say that what I really experienced this year, and perhaps it is because I am a founding member of the PSASA so have been around for a while now, is that the delegates themselves are ‘the hidden curriculum’ at the conference, in addition to the actual conference programme itself.  It is often in the sharing of a thought or idea, or a throw away comment from another speaker, that we are challenged to see ourselves differently, or to approach our own business in a new way.   Monthly Chapter Meetings – A Connection Point As a parenting speaker, it has been challenging to attend chapter meetings regularly, as many of my speaking engagements take place at night at schools or with various parent...

Motivational Speakers – Learn How To Run A Successful Webinar...

So, Do You Want To Learn How To Run A Successful Webinar? You can learn how from the comfort of your own home on 3 June. If you want to use Webinars to present your content and build your speaking brand, then you’ve got to consider signing up on James Robertson’s How to Set Up and Present a Webinar. James, a PSASA Professional Member of long standing has been delivering webinars for some time now. James will share some of his experiences in developing webinar delivery as part of his repertoire of services and will take discussion to help PSASA members introduce Webinars into their portfolio of offerings. The Webinar will be held on Monday 3 June at 19h00 and will run for one hour. Remember, you can attend the Webinar from your own home. Please register for the PSASA ‘Webinar on Webinars’ — Web based Seminars — on Monday, June 3, 2013 7:00 PM – 8:00 PM CAT at:...

Motivational speakers: Keynote Critique Corner...

Have you got a new motivational keynote speech or one that you’d like to dust the cobwebs off? Would you like to test out your speech in front of your peers? If you’d like to test out a new keynote or dust off an old one and give that a bash, consider giving your keynote in front of your peers at the Keynote Critique Corner. If you’d like to test out a new keynote or dust off an old one and give that a bash, consider giving your keynote in front of your peers at the Keynote Critique Corner. How’s it going to work? You’ll present 10 – 12 minutes of your keynote Your fellow speakers will evaluate your keynote and fill in a feedback form If there’s time, we’ll do a round-table verbal evaluation as well. The idea is to get 4 PSASA speakers to present for 10 – 12 minutes each at every session. Details Date: 13 June 2013 Time: 17h30 – 18h30 Venue: Sunnyside Park Hotel, Parktown Book Now Book with Simone Scholtz on admin@psasouthernafrica.co.za First come, first...

Newsletter – December 2012...

Welcome This is the last issue of 2012. May you have a good holiday and come back in 2013 feeling refreshed and ready to go. This month’s newsletter contains very interesting articles and we trust as the editorial team that you will enjoy reading it. We would like to thank all our regular contributors to the newsletter. You have made a big difference in the lives of the other professional speakers. In this issue Presidents Corner – December 2012 Jacques De Villiers achieves Highest Toastmaster Recognition Membership Info My Christmas message Special Offer on Convention 2013 Snap Poll Story Secrets for Speakers #3: Demonstrate your magic Mastermind Groups Let’s Chat Ten Useful iPad Apps Stop Being Bitter and Make 2013 BETTER Taking your eye off the road Presidents Corner – December 2012 By Adolph Kaestner Here we are again in the Speakers “Quiet” month as traditionally things are quiet for most speakers and trainers from 10 December to 15 January annually. But is it really a Quiet time for us – I believe we all need to take a complete break and spend some time with the family and friends – at least 14 days a year and then because we are AAA personalities always wanting to be doing something we need to use the balance of our enforced “Quiet Time” to getting those things done that we just did not get around to in the year. WOW is the best way I can explain the experience Jacques and I had when we attended CAMP NSA in Phoenix last month as your representatives. Thank you so much for affording us the opportunity to do so. We met and made many new friends who are all giving back their time,...