Frequently Asked Questions – Speaking
As a keynote speaker, I get many questions from organizers of events and conferences. I try to answer many of them in the speaking FAQ on this page. But if you have more questions, don’t hesitate to contact me!
What is your speaking fee?
I publish my fees on my website. The fees are fair, consistent across countries, dependent on local purchasing power, and they are non-negotiable.
Do you charge travel expenses?
No, my fee includes travel expenses and accommodation. This means that I do not ask you to arrange anything for me. My travels are complicated, and better managed by myself. Of course, I will coordinate my travel times and locations with you.
Do you want us to book your flights?
No, thanks. Only I know exactly what I need, and you don’t know all my frequent flyer numbers, etc. Besides, my travels are often too complicated (with multiple destinations) to allow organizers to book flight tickets for me. Trust me, a simple return ticket is a rare event for me!
Can you send a copy of the flight ticket receipt?
After the event I will send an invoice which will list the speaking fee and any additional expenses. My fee includes travel expenses, but if you want I can mention flight costs separately. However, I don’t send copies of receipts because it doesn’t make sense to send you an invoice and a receipt. Tax offices require either one or the other, not both.
Do you want us to book your hotel?
That won’t be necessary. However, I appreciate suggestions for any 4- or 5-star hotels in the vicinity of your event.
Do you have a contract or agreement?
I have never needed a contract, and I prefer not to make one. My speaking engagements are arranged in good faith and trust. No customer has ever disappointed me, and vice versa. I suggest we keep it that way. However, I can send you a Statement of Work which covers everything you need to know about our collaboration. 🙂
Please use our PowerPoint template…
Sorry, I don’t use PowerPoint templates. Putting logos, banners, and footers on PowerPoint slides is considered a bad practice among public speaking professionals. Also they don’t go well with my slide layout. Of course, I will happily show an introduction/title page if you want me to.
Can we check your presentation in advance?
I think the quality of presentations can only be properly evaluated by professional public speakers. Movie viewers cannot rate a film by just looking at the script. Likewise, customers cannot rate a presentation by just looking at the slides. If you want a sense of what I can do for you, it is better to browse the videos on my website.
Can you send your presentation before the event?
Sorry, I prefer not to do that. The presentation is useless without me, so why should I send it? You can be sure that I bring the presentation with me, both on my own computer and on a USB stick. Furthermore, I always tweak presentations the day or night before an event. Any presentation that I send earlier will not be up-to-date anymore when I go on stage. Last but not least, I know my presentations work fine on my computer. Other computers usually don’t have the correct fonts, the correct software, etc. As the maker of my presentations, I am the only one who can see if all slides look exactly as they should.
Please use our computer…
Sorry, but I prefer not to. I use my own computer because it is optimized for behaving well during my presentations. It has the right PowerPoint version, the proper fonts, settings, etc… Whenever I had problems in the past, it was always the computers of organizers that were giving me trouble, so I stopped using them. Doctors, painters, and photographers all prefer using their own tools. It’s the same with presenters. And yes, I bring a Windows PC. 🙂
What do you need during your presentation?
I prefer a hands-free microphone (a headset or a clip-on mike), a place where I can see my own presentation when I’m speaking (either my own computer on the stage, or a duplicate screen in front of me), a glass of water, and an interested audience. 🙂
Are you available for lunch/dinner/panels?
That sounds great, but of course it depends on my travel schedule. Feel free to check with me before the event.
Can we make a video of your talk?
Yes, you can make (and publish) videos of most of my presentations. However, I make an exception for my latest/newest presentation, to maintain a sense of exclusivity for other paying customers.
Can we make your slides available?
You can make my presentation available for attendees of your event via email, Dropbox, or other services. However, I do not allow publishing of my slides on a public website, because I want to keep them all together in one location, on my SlideShare account.
Will you help us with the marketing or our event?
I add all public events to my speaking calendar and I usually tweet about them on the social networks. I sometimes also inform the people who are subscribed to my newsletter. But please don’t expect a significant marketing effort. I attend dozens of events each year, and I prefer not to be seen by my followers/readers as a marketing spam machine. 🙂
Will you be available during the whole event?
That depends on the circumstances. I attend many events each year, and people cannot expect me to attend all sessions and participate in all discussions at each event. Sometimes I hang around in the hallways, doing a bit of work. Sometimes I have to leave and travel to the next event. If my availability during your whole event is important to you, let me know well in advance. Maybe we can agree on the conditions.
Do you want me to contribute to your successful event? Would you like an inspiring keynote speaker at your conference?