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How do you know the right questions to ask to screen prospective speakers? Since you are essentially trusting your credibility with the speaker you put in front of your franchisees, pre-qualifying prospective speakers is imperative.

To help you make sure you are selecting the right match, use these three questions:

1. What's your experience working with franchise groups?

It's important that your speakers understand the delicate dance of the franchisee/franchisor relationship. Ask questions that really demonstrate that this speaker will not treat your franchisees as if they are employees. Keep your goal of having this person educate, inspire and connect with your franchisees top of mind and make sure that this person is not going to alienate them.

Be careful to phrase this question in a way that isn't leading. You want to know what they know, not what you hope they know!

2. Who have you spoken for recently that we can speak with?

Get three references from clients who the speaker has worked with in the last 6 months. When checking a speaker's references include questions such as:

  • How easy were they to work with?
  • Did you feel like they came from a position of service and supporting you or did you feel that the speaker was more focused on their own ego?
  • Do you feel like they over- or under- delivered on what they promised?
  • Did they do their homework and customize the content to genuinely connect with your franchisees?

3. What video clips do you have that we can circulate to our decision team?

Be cautious of speakers who have not invested in providing a variety of clips demonstrating their ability in front of a variety of audiences. Multiple clips will help you get a feel for the speaker's ability to consistently engage their audiences.

This has been a guest post by Katrina Mitchell, CEO and Chief Match Maker of SPEAK!

Give her a call if you'd like to brainstorm some creative conference topics and innovative ways to make your 2012 franchise convention the most memorable and effective yet! or 720-304-3710.

We know the franchise world - it's all we do and we'd love to help

If you are a speaker looking for representation, please look at Speak!'s roster criteria.

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