President’s Welcome / Theme

The Year Ahead – Richard Mulvey, National President 2016/17

Thank you for electing me to represent you this year. We now have a fine team and will be moving the association into its next stage of development. We have lost our way a little over the last few years and I believe it is our job to find that way again. You will notice me using the word “WE” very often. This is not my year but rather the year of the new Executive Council.  So it is our year ahead that I would like to outline to you.

For the last few months the new Executive Council has been working on the strategy to take our association into the next decade. We have developed a 2020 vision that includes:

  • Growing the association with new chapters in Southern Africa,
  • Reaching out to past members who have left the association for various reasons,
  • Providing great value in each chapter as well as a range of national events.
  • Supporting the Speakers of Southern Africa

Targets are important and to be successful in our efforts the team have set themselves the following targets to be achieved by the year 2020

  • 500 members and associates
  • 200 attending the convention
  • 100 attending the mid-term convention
  • 10 chapters representing members from each country in Southern Africa

It is our hope that we become know as the association that supports all speakers in Southern Africa.

How will we do that?

With your help.

We all meet other speakers around the country and other local countries. Tell them you are proud to be a member and give them your  PSASA business card (call me if you need more). When they say they left because of the politics tell them that there is no politics now, (plenty of huge egos of course). Just a group of guys and girls who like to hang out together. Reach out to these people who have never been to meetings and invite them to the next one.

To the chapter presidents I say this. Continue to do what you are doing so well. Continue with the speaker dinners, the workshops, the great meetings, mastermind groups, the improv groups, the international Skype Speakers etc. Continue to support each other with your monthly chapter president’s meeting. As new chapters join that will become a lively meeting. To the members who travel around the country, make a plan to visit the chapters in other cities. You will find a whole load of friends there. Let us know when you are in Cape Town and we will arrange to get together.

Even if you are not willing to be a chapter leader you can still help. You can host a speaker dinner, they are great fun. Offer to help organise, give out the name badges, something.

Together we can make a huge difference to this organisation.

Why would you do that?  –  Because the bigger the organisation the better it is for all of us.

Nationally we will also be doing a great deal to help the association grow. We have identified a number of places in Southern Africa where we can start new chapters and we will be visiting these places with the aim of setting up small mastermind groups to start with. We will then help these mastermind groups grow into chapters.

The National Speaker Braai will also become a regular event. The first braai is on the 15th June and is being held at Oaklands Conference Centre in Ferndale at18:30. Members are invited to come along and bring a past member to share in the fun. There will be no speeches and no ceremony, just come along to hang out with your speaker friends. Attendance is free if you bring along a past member (or potential member). We will be running the same event in Durban, Cape Town over the next month or two and then we will go to the other major centres of Southern Africa. Great food will be provided. (Don’t forget to bring your own drinks). Book your place with Simone by the 13th June 2016

We will organise a “Kick Ass” Convention and a mid term national workshop. The mid term workshop will be in Johannesburg this year on 8th October and will focus on the skills to grow your business. Roll your sleeves up for that event we will really get down to work.

We will develop the PSASA foundation to support Speakers in need. The foundation will also fund one “rising star” with a disadvantaged background in each of the major chapters for a year while they get their speaking business going. It is hoped that we will be able to sponsor this rising star to attend the convention. The Cape Chapter has done this last year with Nathan Philander who was sponsored to attend the meetings and the convention in Cape Town. Nathan is continuing to develop his career and will be one of our MCs at the convention next year.

Talking about sponsorship, we will work much harder to get sponsorship at a variety of levels for the convention and workshops etc. in the coming years

We are aware that the PSASA is an expensive organisation to be a member of, especially if you are just starting your speaking business so we will be lowering the fees over the coming months. We are doing this to encourage massive new growth around our member countries.

We will manage the finances of the association with a fine toothed comb to ensure that we are not wasting any of our resources. We have an excellent treasurer in Chris Vermeulen and we will continue to make sure that we have a surplus at the end of each year by growing the membership, cutting costs and getting sponsorship.

By the end of June we will also have a PR and Media plan in place to get the PSASA on the map amongst the speakers of Southern Africa.

We are aware that some members have financial difficulties from time to time. We will find a way of keeping them active in the association. Some members have benefited from the kindness and generosity of others, paying their fees, funding the convention etc. We will find a way of making sure people are not embarrassed and still can be part of this wonderful family of speakers.

We will actively promote the CSP accreditation. We are proud of all our CSPs and I know there are many others in this room who will be applying for their CSP over the coming year. I have recently discovered that outsiders can apply to become a fellow of the PSAUK, and we will look into what is involved and pass that information to the members.

We will continue to ensure that there is a succession plan in place both nationally and regionally. In the past we have battled to find the right people to lead this association. Those people who are capable leaders have declined the task because it is considered to be onerous, because those stepping down from the leadership positions have said they are glad to be rid of the role. I have taken on this role in the past and I can assure you that I am delighted to be in this position again, serving the association in the best way I can. We now have a Deputy President (Francois Muscat) to take over from me next year and a Vice president (Nikki Bush) to take over from him the following year. These fine people will be guiding your association into the next decade.

Richard Mulvey and the Executive Council

Francois Muscat, Nikki Bush, Chris Vermeulen, Charlotte Kemp, Ian Rheeder
And Chapter Presidents: Adele du Rand, Jason Sandler, Chantaul Jordan