Public Speaking Agreement
Should You Have One? Is it important? I still have many questions concerning this document. Especially, how should it be worded exactly, so that everything is covered? I learned the hard way what happens when you don’t have one.
This is a sample of my public speaking agreement. I have used this twice now just to give myself extra protection when someone hires me to speak. Yes, to make sure that I get paid for my materials and services. Public speaking can be expensive for an indie author. But I can imagine that it could be expensive for anyone!
It takes a lot to get ready for a speaking engagement and after I was cheated (Lesson Learned). I decided that this could not happen again. I can reuse the PowerPoint presentation after I redo it. But I could not reuse the workbooks; they had all the information for that conference on them. If I am going to speak and teach you something, I am going to give you your money’s worth, period! So; I was left with special made materials, which I could not use for any other occasion. Nor; could I get my money back for the other items I purchased, for that speaking event (marketing ads).
What methods do you use to protect yourself when accepting public speaking engagements? Did you draft a Letter of Agreement? When I wrote this up, I just used business letter writing format. If you have ever written a business letter to anyone, worked in an office before then you know exactly what I am talking about. If you are unsure of how to format the letter, you can go inside Microsoft Word and click the business folder. This folder will give you templates of different business documents. I am using Word as my example, due to this being my favorite writing program. If you use something different, that’s fine, just check to see if the program has templates for you to follow. Google is another resource that can be used to help you find examples of business letter writing.
My Letter of Agreement is written with all of this included. I wanted you to see what works for me; this may change, in the future as I learn more.
Letter of Agreement
My Information – Name, address, phone, fax, email
*My tax id (SS#) in my case I only had to use this once so far*
Client – name, event title, address, phone/fax/email
The body of Agreement – event title, date, time, a full description of what I am doing, materials used, outline or schedule, advance payment, and when remaining payment is expected.
If you are still unsure about the legal side of your agreement, then take your letter to a legal aid office. There is usually one in every area, you may have to wait to see somebody, but it’s worth it in my opinion. Now if you have that friend that’s a lawyer, of course, ask them to go over your document. I was advised that if I was going to take pictures that a disclosure notice should accompany the contract and that people should be made aware during the advertising of the event that pictures would be taken and used by the speaker and how they may be used. I have seen these notices in small print on event advertisements. I just assumed that people expected pictures or videos to be taken at events. Nevertheless, stuff and situations happen, so the video and picture notice will now be accompanying my contracts. I just want to cover all legal bases.
I hope that this Talk Session has helped those confused in this area. Comment below with your thoughts about Public Speaking. As I always ask, share and share some more.
If you have not checked out Southside Book and Writers Club 2019 reading list, you are missing out. We have books from all genres listed, authors reached out from everywhere for us to review their masterpieces. January 19 is SBWC first review for 2019.
Kim L. Walton, Indie Writer, Self-Published Author of 3 books
Founder of Southside Book and Writers Club, Richmond Virginia