Barely 3 months after the highly successful Raise Your Game 2012, the Asia Professional Speakers – Singapore (APSS) was back yesterday with the APSS Annual Convention 2012! Held at Marina Mandarin Hotel, the Convention featured powerful presenters and passionate speeches. If you’ve missed the event, make a date with them next year at the Annual Convention 2013, slated for 14th May 2013. In the meantime, you will find below some of the nuggets of wisdom I gathered yesterday and the ‘shot & saved’ pictures taken at the event!
One word to describe yesterday’s speakers:
If your understanding of ‘speakers’ is that they simply speak on stage, you can’t be further from the truth. They are fabulous entertainers too!
We were serenaded at this event by the lovely Jana Stanfield who also shared about the importance of giving back to society a portion of what you earn.
The MC, Scott Friedman, kept the laughs coming throughout the day. *Scott was formerly the President of the National Speakers Association (USA) in 2004-05.
1) Laura Stack spoke about ‘The Mission of the Professional Speaker’. She is America’s productivity expert and was introduced by Scott as having a “legendary ability to get things done”. She shared that we have to remind ourselves about the reason(s) we got into this business in the first place, so as to keep the Passion alive. Also, Progress can be achieved when speakers help make the ‘pie’ bigger so everyone can have a slice, and if 1 person does a good job, the rest look good too.
2) Charles Kovess spoke about ‘Harnessing and Expressing your True Passion as a Speaker into Irresistible Value Propositions for your Clients’. A former international tax lawyer, he is now known for being Australasia’s Passion Provocateur. He was introduced as having 5 children aged between 18 months and 30 years, and it caused quite a stir in the audience! His eye-catching outfit also made him stand out among the other speakers:
Charles reminded us that we cannot be in great shape physically, mentally, spiritually, etc, without hard work. He also encouraged us to step out of our comfort zones and set goals for ourselves. He said that Hard Work and Discipline are what it takes to be great, and that easy fixes don’t exist.
3) Bernadette T. Vadurro shared about ‘How to get FREE Publicity’. She is the Past President of the New Mexico State Chapter of the National Speakers Association and the Past President of Capitol City Toastmasters.
Bernadette said she once paid US$40,000 to her publicist, only to find that she was capable of doing a better job than the publicist did. She gave very good tips on how to get free publicity and I love that she exhorted the audience to provide people with articles that can help them.
4) Pamela Jett shared about ‘Rock the (Virtual) House – How to Provide High-Content Virtual Events to Enhance Your Bottom Line’. Pamela has been delivering teleseminars and webinars as she is an “early adopter of virtual presentations”.
She reminded us to write marketing copy for the wallet and how offering a series of webinars is very good for the bottom line. What seemed counter-intuitive at first was her suggestion to “Market FIRST, then develop the content”.
5) Ron Kaufman’s topic was ‘From One-man Business to Global Empire’. Ron told us to pick the strongest guy seated at each table. Then, he created quite a sensation when he announced that each of those selected should proceed to collect copies of his new book (hot off the press) from the stage for everyone.
Ron’s new book is titled ‘Uplifting Service’. You can get a copy here.
What impressed me most about Ron is his obsession with detail. At one point, he had hired 8 editors for his new book, and there were many versions of the book cover before he decided on the one you see above.
6) Ed Scannell shared about the ‘Games Speakers and Trainers Play’. Ed was NSA’s National President in 1991-92 and in 1999, he received NSA’s highest individual award – the ‘Cavett Award’. He was named a ‘Legend in the Speaking Profession’ in 2006.
One important takeaway I received was that if I make a person like himself/herself a little better, the person will like me better too.
7) Alexander Blass spoke about ‘Priceless Strategies from an Innovator’. He is the youngest prize winner of the Daily Record’s Top Innovator of the Year Award.
He shared that innovators know that regret is far worse than failure. He told us to think about that one big idea we have been sitting on and not taking action about. If we don’t do it, we can be sure someone else will! Alexander told us to think about what will make sense tomorrow and to create trends instead of following them.
8) Janelle Barlow shared about the ‘Certified Speaking Professional (CSP) – What does it mean and how can you get it?’ Janelle is President of the Global Speakers Federation.
I came to realize what the designation of CSP means for professional speakers and how it opens up even more doors for them. The APSS currently has 7 Certified Speaking Professionals among their 49 Professional Members.
I was very amused when I noticed that Chester was wearing orange socks. (I did not find his orange tie unusual but I was surprised to note that his socks were orange in color too!)
He later shared with the audience that he and his team wear orange watches, ties and socks – “hard to find, but always on sale”. It’s because of The Carrot Principle, which you can find out more about by clicking here.
10) Patrick Liew’s speech was titled ‘Revolution! A Clarion Call to Rebuild the Business World’. Patrick is the CEO of HSR Global Ltd and a co-founder of Success Resources. You can check out my video interview with Patrick here to find out more about him.
Patrick inspires me as he claims to not be a professional speaker but he has a commanding stage presence and his speeches have resonated with many. I appreciated his candor in sharing how it was so difficult for him to say “I love you” to his employees, even though he wanted to convey this message to them. I think the Business World will be a better place if more employers learn from this Love Evangelist.
And if I may add just one comment about the Convention, I would like to say that I wish I did not have to miss hearing from certain speakers because some presentations occurred in 2 different ballrooms simultaneously. It was one of those times I wished I could be in 2 different places at once, and not have to make the painful decision of choosing one ballroom to be in. I want to honor the other speakers whom I did not have a chance to hear from: Mike Hancock – Become a Rock Star in your Niche, Raymond Phoon – Five Sure-Fire Ways to Win Long-Term Business Engagements, and Gustav Gous – The Art of Inter-Cultural Presentations.
As everyone has different takeaways despite attending the same convention, here’s what my friend, Richard Gavriel noted (used with permission).
I was pleasantly surprised by the APSS Awards Presentation segment. 3 Spirit of Service Awards were given out to (from left) David Lim, Andrew Chow and Shirley Taylor:
I think it’s great that this recognition is given to honor the unsung heroes – those who give selflessly for the progress of the organization.
Finally, a big thank you to Andrew Chow for the invite and support of what I do. Thank you, Tim Wade, for helpful suggestions for improving my blogging ‘business’. And two thumbs up for Shirley Taylor and her team for putting together the awesome APSS Annual Convention 2012!
*To find out more about the Asia Professional Speakers – Singapore, or to join the APSS, click here.
*To find out more about the individual speakers, simply click on their names above and you will be directed to their websites.