Five Places to Find Speakers for Your Club

By Brandi McGrath Kong, Director of Member Services

May 11, 2021

From monthly club meetings to annual regional conventions to sporadic community events, speakers play an important role in many of the things that Sertoma clubs do. So much goes into coordinating speakers, but the first, and often the hardest, step is to actually find them in the first place.

In general, finding speakers can be quite the arduous task. When you’re looking for a single keynote speaker, you are charged with finding someone with the marketability, knowledge and appeal to carry your event’s marquee. On the other hand, when you have several slots to fill, it can be challenging to find enough presenters who can offer expertise on your chosen topic while also conforming to budget and time constraints. 

So where can we find these speakers? 

  1. Personal Network: Most planning professionals agree that the best place to begin your search is within your own network. This saves time in research, makes it easier to secure a commitment and often leads to a lower speaker’s fee – or even a free appearance if you’re lucky! 
  2. Membership Organizations: Think about the organizations and groups you belong to in your community. Professional associations, Chambers of Commerce and nonprofit organizations you support can all be a great source of speakers for your club meetings and other events.
  3. Sertoma Network: Consider experts from within your own club and/or donor list. Your national organization and leadership (i.e., board members and specialists) also provide great presenter options. It’s amazing the gifts that our Sertomans have to offer!
  4. Community Resources: Check out elected officials, city government employees and local universities. Each of these places has experts in programs that are likely to be of interest to your members. Likewise, groups like Toastmasters offer a wide array of speakers well versed in interesting topics sure to draw the attention of your audience.
  5. External Resources: Explore options outside your community through resources like LinkedIn, the National Speakers Association or even a traditional call for proposals.

You can learn more about working with speakers in our on-demand training and events manual for clubs. Want to see some of our favorite speakers in action? Make plans to join us for the 2021 National Convention July 22-24, 2021, in Kansas City. Hotel room block and early registration closes June 21.

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