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Treated Like a King...And a Mark

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If you want to be a public speaking coach, presentation skills coach or a media trainer, you have to treat it like a real business. That means getting paid in advance for your work. You're not a bank. You shouldn't be giving people credit. I'll never forget the time I flew into Barbados for a training. I'd always wanted to go to Barbados.

Beautiful island. I landed there at the airport with my name was my main contact. And wina DJ, so happy to see you. The whole island is excited about your rival. She picked me up drove me around. We went to the dominant radio station, I did interviews, went to the newspaper, did interviews, went had a fabulous dinner.

I was fetid like a king, training the next day and everything went beautifully large audience very enthused Ask people from major banks, major community organizations were there. Then personal tours were set up for me. I got to see the fancy super fancy resort where Tiger Woods was married, had part of his honeymoon, got to learn about the history of the island. Everything was just beautiful. It was fun. It was interesting.

I'm doing TV interviews, radio interviews, newspaper interviews, training goes well. Sounds great. Right? Sounds like a fantastic experience. My host Edwina is making sure I have no unmet need. I don't have to worry about where I'm going.

My hotel room, meals, everything is taken care. Sounds great, right. Only one problem when I left the island. I didn't have the check in my pocket. From the training when I called Email, faxed. A week later, a month later, two months later.

I never got paid. That's right. I got stiffed. Folks, if you want to run an actual public speaking business, a presentation skills, business, immediate training, business, it's not a business. Just having your ego fed doing talk shows being flown around having your expenses covered. Because they did buy my plane ticket.

It's not a business unless you actually net money and I didn't do it then. Now that's happened very few times in my career, but it did happen that it was a learning experience. And the experiences the real lesson is get paid in advance. Now you can't do it. 100% of the time, there are certain government agencies, UN agencies, it's a third largest bank in the world, they might not pay you in advance. Occasionally there are exceptions to the rule.

But by and large, your standard default position should be if you actually want to have a business get paid in advance. Why do I tell that story? Again, I only tell that story. If I'm speaking to an audience of people who want to go into my business or I'm speaking to students or looking at this as a career option, or if I'm speaking to Toastmasters, people who want to figure out how to help people with presentation skills on a full time professional basis. A lot of people and I made this mistake to go into this business thinking well, you'll just do good work. People will pay you the money will come in, or you do good work.

Send an invoice you'll get paid well, no and no. Want to get paid. Get the money up front. First.

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