SOURCE: emerson consulting group inc.

April 29, 2008 09:38 ET

Thoughtleaders Rise on Public Speaking, New Book Says

"The Expert's Edge" Shows How to Win Speaking Engagements and Capitalize on Them

CONCORD, MA--(Marketwire - April 29, 2008) - Anyone striving to become a thoughtleader must speak to groups, says Ken Lizotte, author of "The Expert's Edge: Become the Go-To Authority People Turn To Every Time" (McGraw-Hill).

"Public speaking coupled with publishing delivers a one-two punch that your nonthoughtleading competitors simply cannot match," he writes.

Lizotte calls public speaking "Pillar 2" of thoughtleading. Pillar 1 is publishing articles and books: writing for trade and professional publications and/or authoring a book helps you land speaking engagements and provides compelling and credible reprints for you to hand out.

Afraid to speak? Take a public speaking course or join Toastmasters, he advises. Speak often! Even the smallest opportunities "promote your thoughtleading brand," writes Lizotte who's spoken before dozens of local, regional and national groups.

Lizotte also advises preparing a "speaker sheet" that includes your bio, photo, topics, publishing credits, speaking testimonials and contact information. Post this on your website and email to speaking opportunities.

While famous thoughtleaders make megabucks giving speeches, you'll likely have to start out small with groups like the Rotary and professional associations. "You probably won't earn a fee but the rewards are immense," Lizotte says.

Never "wing" important speeches and don't bore people with PowerPoint. "Stay away from PPT slides if you can and practice speaking 'without a net.' You'll learn to communicate more directly, clearly, spontaneously and comfortably," Lizotte writes.

"The Expert's Edge: Become the Go-To Authority People Turn To Every Time" covers the theory and practice of thoughtleading, from Ralph Waldo Emerson -- who earned his keep with public speaking -- to contemporaries like Donald Trump, Tom Peters, Suze Orman and Stephen Covey.

Lizotte is chief imaginative officer of emerson consulting group inc. in Concord, Mass., (www.thoughtleading.com) which has helped 200 clients become thoughtleaders since 1996.

More information about "The Expert's Edge" can be found online at www.thoughtleading.com/book_experts-edge.htm.

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