If you don’t add value as a speaker you won’t get booked, or you won’t be booked for a second time.  The reason why people want to connect with any brand, and particularly a speaker (you are a Brand of One after all, according Tom Peters) is inherently because of perceived value.  When you have done your thing on the stage, what value to do leave behind?  To command fees that generate a decent income, think about this quote from Jim Rohn:

“You do not pay me for the hour, you pay me for the value I bring to that hour.”

This is even truer in tough economic times when everyone is re-evaluating where they spend their money.  Where they perceive they are not getting value, they stop investing time and money.  Memberships of associations are exactly the same.  Our President, Jacques de Villiers has been looking into the value of the PSASA and canvassing various members about the value that the association offers them. See his comments below:
What is the PSASA?
We are a group of professional speakers that get together from time-to-time to share fellowship with our peers, learn from them and, if we are really lucky, get to pass some business their way.
What is the purpose of the PSASA?
Straight from all our literature, the PSASA exists to help professional speakers improve their speaking skills and their speaking business.
We do this by focusing on the 4 E’s  (eloquence, expertise, enterprise and ethics) and working on the 8 competencies of professional speakers (professional awareness, professional relationships, topic development, platform mechanics, presenting and performing, authorship and product development, sales and marketing and managing the business).
What value does the PSASA offer?
Let me tell you why I joined the PSASA. It’s really simple. Paul du Toit asked me to join and help create a movement started by Stef du Plessis.  This was a personal request, not done via email, proving that if each PSASA member invited a non-member to join by sharing the vision, I think we could get some real traction.
I never ever joined the PSASA to get something, but rather to give something. But in the giving, I did get something out. I got/get to hang out with the most amazing people who enrich my life – not necessarily financially, but spiritually and mentally too.
When it comes to value, here’s what I see happening. I’m sure you probably know of someone in your PSASA circle that has received some kind of benefit out of this amazing organisation from referrals to sharing of contacts, from media interviews to access to specialist knowledge, from encouragement to constructive criticism.  In a very real way, here’s what I have seen happen in my PSASA universe, and there’s so much more that I have not seen:
Ask the following people how much business I’ve pushed their way (the money that they have made out of me will have paid their PSASA membership for 5 years or more): Stef du Plessis, Billy Selekane, Ian Rheeder, Ray Patterson, Adolph Kaestner, Richard Mulvey, Paul du Toit, Trevor Ketler, Francois Muscat (ex-member, but will be rejoining), Callie Roos

  1. Ask the 3 active mastermind groups in Gauteng and the one in Cape Town (with Richard Mulvey and some ex members) how they are doing? What alliances and business they are generating
  2. Ask Richard Mulvey, Paul du Toit and Adolph Kaestner if they appreciate that the PSASA punts their Speaker/Business Training in its newsletter for free
  3. Ask the members that attended Charlotte Kemp’s social media talk in Gauteng if they weren’t blown away and if it impacted on their business positively
  4. Ask the Gauteng members if the talk on consulting at the last meeting wasn’t a game changer for them
  5. Ask the members if they don’t get at least one gem they can use out of both the Speaker magazine and Voices of Experience every month
  6. Ask Julie Filmer how the PSASA introduced her to Bronwyn Hesketh of Speakers Inc and how she felt about getting her first R10 000 professional speaking engagement as a result
  7. Ask Chris Vermeulen why he travels 300km from Bella Bella and back to attend every Gauteng Chapter meeting
  8. Ask Jabulani Mangena how it felt to win the Toastmasters Championship of Public Speaking this year as a result of PSASA members mentoring him with his winning speech. He competed in the World Championship in the USA in August and reached the top 9.
  9. Ask Jabulani Mangena and Carl Schultz what a privilege it was to sit in on one of Stef du Plessis UGR sessions and how much they learned from that
  10. Ask Andrew Horton and Ian Rheeder what it was worth to them to speak in front of 60 potential buyers at our 2-monthly breakfast sessions
  11. Ask Charlotte Kemp and Richard Mulvey how they felt being given an opportunity to speak in front of 35 people in Durban to promote their book
  12. Ask the 4 – 6 people that completed their Business Card on Steroids book as a result of the SIG run by Bertie du Plessis, how they feel about their achievement
  13. Ask the 6+ people that completed their 15 000 word book in July’s book challenge how they feel about themselves right now
  14. Ask Petro Janse van Vuuren how she felt about presenting at a Toastmasters meeting the other night and selling R800+ worth of books
  15. Ask me what a privilege it was for me to attend Callie Roos’s 3-day Timbivati workshop worth 10k for free
  16. Ask Stef du Plessis, Douglas Kruger, Graeme Codrington and Jabulani Mangena if they thought it is worth presenting in front of 80 potential buyers on Wednesday 7 August
  17. Ask the abused children at Matla A Abana if the PSASA is making a difference in their lives
  18. Ask those that attended a breakfast put together by Carl Shultz what it was like to tap into the wisdom of Gavin Sharples, Gary Bailey, Stef du Plessis, Billy Selekane and Michael Jackson
  19. Ask Julie Filmer how she felt about presenting to 60 potential buyers at a breakfast organised by Matla A Abana on 14 August
  20. Ask why Graeme Codrington, Francois Muscat (waiting for paperwork), Haydee Antezana, Fred Felton and Michael Jackson (waiting for paperwork) have rejoined the PSASA
  21. Ask Ian Rheeder why, after he resigned last month, he immediately reconsidered and rejoined
  22. Ask Jurgen Tietz how the PSASA directly impacted on his successful speaking career (He is one of the most successful speakers in the PSASA right now (not consulting or training – just speaking).
  23. Ask Stef du Plessis, Francois Muscat, Douglas Kruger if they didn’t appreciate the opportunity to speak in front of 70 potential buyers two years ago
  24. Ask Morongwa Makakane how she felt when Robin Pullen regularly visited her in hospital after her horrible accident
  25. Ask our members where, for R50 a monthly meeting they can get access to some of the greatest experts this country has to offer (and, get a meal too)
  26. Ask our members if they don’t find at least one thing to improve their business at every convention they attend
  27. Ask Roger Knowles if paying for his airfare to the NSA Convention last month helped him have the most amazing experience. And, if we didn’t pay, would he have gone
  28. Ask those members that attended the game changing talk by Graeme Codrington at last month’s Gauteng Chapter meeting, what impact it had on them

Giving and getting
If we want to put a purely monetary value on the PSASA ….. if we don’t get at least one professional speaking engagement (which can cover our yearly fee) out of an idea or a connection we’ve made at the PSASA each year, I’d be surprised.  Go on, just think about it and start adding to my list above because, as I said, this is just what I have witnessed in my own corner of the PSASA Universe.
I might add too, that the more involved you get in the association, the more you seem to benefit. Added value seem to flow your way.  Maybe it’s got something to do with relationships and getting to know other members better, because it’s always easier to refer business to someone you really know.
So next time you think of the PSASA, think of not just the value you are getting but what value are you adding to the association.  What can you bring to the table, what can you give?  It’s a two-way street.