Welcome to my motivational speaker website. As a speaker, I have been honored to speak to many companies and associations for more than a decade. If you arrived on this page it is possible you are searching for a motivational speaker for your next live event. I hope you will take a few minutes to explore my site, watch the videos, listen to my podcast, and reach out to discuss what can be done to make your conference memorable, engaging, and full of useful content. I think that your conference is important and want to be the motivational speaker who creates the right experience for your audience.
My name is Thom Singer and I am a corporate speaker who works with companies and associations to ensure that their meetings are amazing. I have delivered over 850 professional speeches to groups ranging in size from 25 to 4000. Inspiring people at live events has become more than a job for me. I would like you to consider me for the keynote speaker for your next event. Not all motivational speakers are created equal. I promise to be your partner to kick off a great conference.
Speaking as a business
The top motivational speakers in the world paved the way for the speaking business to become part of today’s meetings industry. Forty years ago meetings were different. Before there were people like Zig Ziglar, Tony Robbins, Les Brown, and others, the world of events was very different. These world champion inspirational speakers showed that a live experience is about more than the transparency slides on an overhead projector.
Motivational speaking is a learned skill. I studied the masters for years before I became a speaker. Too many people call themselves speakers who are not ready to partner with meeting planners to create an interactive experience.
It was April 1, 2009 when I became a full-time speaker, but the journey began more than a decade earlier. I had a successful career in sales and marketing for large companies, law firms, and banks. In these roles I attended many conferences. I watched hundreds of motivational speakers and always thought “their job seems better than mine”. As I told people I wanted to pursue this as a career, many told me it was not possible.
An important step I took toward becoming a motivational speaker was to learn about the meetings industry. I started attending the National Speakers Association meetings and meeting with people in the Meeting Professionals International organization. I talked to as many people as I could and read the publications of the American Society of Association Executives to understand what were the important issues to my clients.
Believing In My Dream
Not possible? I never doubted that being a motivational speaker was a possibility. Others had figured it out. I would too. But how could someone chase a dream like becoming a speaker? Every time I saw a motivational speaker deliver a presentation it was as if I was enrolled in a master class. I would line up to talk with them and complied all the advice.
In the 1990s one of the top motivational speakers was bestselling author Harvey Mackay (he is still a very active speaker at age 87). I had seen him speak at several events and I decided to reach out and share my desire to become a speaker. Harvey wrote me back (this was in the days before the internet and social media). He told me about the realities of the speaking business, and encouraged me to join Toastmasters and learn to become great at speaking.
I took his advice and learned all I could about how to craft a message and engage an audience. I entered the Toastmasters World Championship of Public Speaking at my local club several times. In 2002 I made it to the regional semi-finals and placed 2nd. This meant I was in the top 18 in the world (there were 9 finalists, each of whom had a runner-up… and the person who beat me won the whole thing!).
My Toastmasters experience gave me confidence. The next advice from Harvey was to join the National Speakers Association. While Toastmasters teaches the basic skills of motivational speaking, NSA teaches the business of being a speaker.
My Start As A Professional Motivational Speaker
From 2002 forward I looked for all opportunities to present to groups of people. I spoke inside the companies where I worked, teaching business development and sales skills to the legal and banking professionals. I also spoke at every local business club that would give me the privilege of their platform.
In 2009 I qualified for membership in the National Speakers Association, and have never looked back. My whole income for over a decade has come from being a motivational speaker.
Growing a career in any area of the meetings industry is not easy. Successful meetings are not cookie cutter events, and the top venues, meeting planners, speakers, etc… must come together to create something unique and memorable.
Places I Have Presented
My experiences as a motivational speaker makes me proud of what I have accomplished. Those who said it could not be done were wrong. I try to work that into my speeches, letting others know they can achieve their dreams. Having presented for companies and associations across the United States and beyond has been an amazing honor.
My TEDx Talk on “The Art of Giving Small” is another presentation I share with pride. While it is not on the topic I usually present on in my work, the experience of connecting my speaking career to a good cause is part of my journey. Please review how my family gives back.
I have had the honor to speak and facilitate sessions at South by Southwest (SXSW) eight times over the past 12 years. If you are familiar with SXSW you know it is a place people go to check out new ideas. In 2019 I presented on the importance of mentorship. This presentation was cool because my co-presenters were two people I have mentored over the past six years.
While most of my talks have been in the USA, I have also had the pleasure to share my stories with groups in Canada, The Bahamas, Bermuda, and China.
Motivational Speaker for Your Next Event
If you are seeking a motivational speaker / plenary speaker for your upcoming event, I believe we should have a conversation. While I am not the right speaker for every conference, the only way to be sure is to have a detailed conversation about the outcomes you are seeking. I am on a crusade to make sure there are no boring meetings. Your speakers (motivational speakers, industry speakers, technical education speakers, etc…), no matter the topic, should bring fun to the event.
No matter who you hire to speak, they need to do more than speak and leave. Too many motivational speakers best talent is getting to the airport within 30 minutes of saying “Thank you very much”. Your speakers should be partners with meeting planners and be willing to engage with your audience before and after their presentations. If a speaker is not willing to work with you on your special requests, hire a different speaker.
More than a motivational speaker – Have your opening keynote serve as your Conference EmCee
If you want more than a motivational speaker, then we should talk. If you seeking someone to host your conference, the “Conference Catalyst” is what you need. My favorite role at an event is to serve is as the opening keynote speaker and stay involved for three or four days as the master of ceremonies / EmCee. I have a unique way of weaving my content, and the ideas of all the speakers into ongoing fun conversations with the audience. While not every organization utilizes the services of a professional event EmCee, I have found that when the speakers stay engaged with the audience for the whole event, the conference is better.
Thom Singer is a funny keynote speaker and professional master of ceremonies. He has delivered over 800 presentations and is committed to working with his clients to customize a message that will educate and engage the meeting participants. He can be booed directly at ThomSinger.com or via your favorite speakers bureau.