Introducing The She-Suite™ Club

The Exclusive Empowerment Community for Leading Women

When Women win, we all win.
Join the movement today.

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Have you hit the “glass ceiling” so many times, it feels as if the top of your head is flat? Has your journey through the executive ranks seem to have stalled out? Are your dedication and hard work going unrewarded? Are you feeling underappreciated or misunderstood in the workplace? If so…welcome to The Club!

“This is THE place, where like-minded, executive-minded, forward-thinking women come to communicate—collaborate—and celebrate everything that it means to be a career-focused woman in a male-dominated work environment. This isn’t about ‘us vs. them.’ This is about us making a name for ourselves—taking a seat, and truly owning that seat, at the executive table—and doing so not as ‘clones’ of men, but as authentic, self-confident, self-empowered women.”

Amanda Blesing

2 x Author; Women’s C-Suite Mentor & Executive Coach; Founder: The She-Suite™ Club

Where empowered women empower other women. Because when women win, everyone wins.

Advice for Women Speaking Without a Fee

“A woman with a voice is by definition a strong woman. But the search to find that voice can be remarkably difficult.”~ Melinda Gates

Many women get invited to speak at conferences and events for free.  If you’re an executive woman and you are representing your organisation, that’s understandable as your company is paying your salary. However for consultants, this is tough.

These types of requests happen more for women – especially in the women and leadership space.  In fact, I’ve even been asked to ‘pay for the privilege’ of speaking at someone else’s conference with the promise of an audience of 145 women in finance!! After I picked myself up off the floor from shock,  I asked a few clarifying questions then politely declined. Why? I value my time and energy plus I don’t want to perpetuate this systemic abuse of women speaking for free or worse.
  
However in some instances, whether you are a consultant or an executive, there is simply no budget (sadly and ironically) and you need to make a decision whether or not to speak based on whether or not you want to do it and ……..  what else you’re going to get out of it.

It’s not selfish – it’s sensible.

THINGS TO CONSIDER BEFORE SAYING YES TO NO FEE


1. Does it get you in front of your desired audience?

While the audience might sound like your target market – is it really? I get asked to speak all the time for free, with the assumption that the potential promised audience of 300 women is my target market. But I need to make sure that the audience is 300 women at the right level of seniority – and not already in an existing mentoring program, before I say yes.  So before saying yes, think about your ideal audience or target market and work out what questions you might need to ask to qualify.  If you’re an executive, it might mean be industry decision makers who might potentially refer, recommend or endorse you. If you’re launching your consulting business, it’s your ideal client avatar. Get clear on who you want to get in front of before you say yes.


2. What else might you get in return?

Sometimes you’ll say yes to speaking without a fee, even if the audience is not ideal, because of a range of reasons not limited to –

  • The conference program looks awesome and you’d want to attend anyway
  • The opportunities to meet and mingle with other speakers is what’s most attractive
  • The exposure opportunities are great – such as pre and post event promotion
  • It’s great practice for your dream speaking gig in the USA on a program with your idols 
  • Positioning – it will look good on your bio, especially if you are just starting out to build your credibility and positioning
  • It’s an exotic location and the organiser pays for your accommodation and airfare
  • It’s an international conference and you want to get the kudos of speaking internationally so you can put “international speaker” in your LinkedIn headline
  • You’re a consultant with an irresistible offer and know how to make considerable money by selling from the stage or
  • You believe in the mission or the cause and want to give back.

Despite this impressive list of reasons, there is no harm in asking what the budget is. After all, if you don’t ask, the answer will always be no.

3. How else can you leverage the speaking opportunity?

If you’re going to go to the effort of speaking, then work out how else you can repackage, re-purpose or leverage your preparation in other ways. It’s not wrong to offer other conference or event organisers the same topic especially if it gives you the exposure or practice you’re looking for. It’s also great to repackage bits and pieces of your presentation. Here are some ideas from my clients –

  • Three LinkedIn photo posts – before, during and after
  • A mini video presentation for LinkedIn or your intranet with a brief summary of what you spoke on
  • A conference report for your boss and team back at the office
  • An update on the intranet at work to ensure others in your organisation know what you are doing.

All these leveraged exposure opportunities might just mean more to you than the actual speaker fee itself. For example, if I were offered an opportunity to speak in the USA on a panel with a few of my idols in the fempowerment space, I’d be in like Flynn as the saying goes – even if I had to pay for the privilege (despite laughing at the request I mentioned earlier). The benefits of the leveraged exposure for me, far outweigh the lack of fee in that particular instance. However, once again, there is no harm in asking – don’t ask, don’t get.


4. How can you make this easier for yourself? Parlay into a panel presentation

Women are already busy enough and adding heaps of speaking gigs to your visibility plan can be both draining and stressful. Instead, why not parlay the invitation to speak into an offer to be on a panel? Panel presentations are so much easier, you get to meet a bunch of other people in your area, plus you get the same exposure and other benefits as someone who does a 60 min keynote, 2 hour workshop or 45 min case study.

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What My Incredible Clients Have to Say…

Thank you so much Amanda. You have brought out the best of me and put it on a page.

Amanda helped me build my digital brand with a strategic approach that’s aligned to my long-term career goals. I learned to add value and richness to my network and customers, and I have a visibility strategy that is above the line and future-focused!

It’s a blast working with Amanda – I can feel the momentum growing – now a matter of me putting my foot on the pedal to get myself out there in full confidence!

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11 Point Executive Career Toolkit Checklist

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to put your best foot forward in your career, every time.

11 Point Executive Career
Toolkit Checklist

To ensure you are never caught out, and are perfectly positioned to put your best foot forward in your career, every time.

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