33 minutes | Oct 1st 2020

SL082: Corporate Executive To Professional Speaker

Corporate Executive To Professional Speaker James Taylor interviews Dr Shirley Davis and they talked about going from Corporate Executive To Professional Speaker

In today's episode Dr Shirley Davis they talk about going from Corporate Executive To Professional Speaker

Dr Shirley Davis is an accomplished international keynote speaker, corporate executive, President of SDS Global Enterprises and a master of reinvention. She has over 20 years of business experience and has worked at five Fortune 50 and 100 companies in various senior and executive leadership roles. Most recently, she was the Global Head of Diversity and Inclusion and Workplace Strategies for the Society of Human Resource Management, the world’s largest HR association. She’s been featured and quoted in NBC’s The Today Show, USA Today, the Wall Street Journal and The Washington Post. Shirley is a Board Member of the National Speakers Association and holds a Bachelor’s in Pre-Law; a Master’s in HR Management; and a PhD in Business and Organization Management.

What we cover:

  • Transitioning from a corporate job to full-time professional speaker
  • Diversity at events
  • Positioning as a business strategy


Please SUBSCRIBE ►http://bit.ly/JTme-ytsub ♥️ Your Support Appreciated!

If you enjoyed the show, please rate it on YouTube, iTunes or Stitcher and write a brief review. That would really help get the word out and raise the visibility of the Creative Life show.


Apple: http://bit.ly/TSL-apple Libsyn: http://bit.ly/TSL-libsyn Spotify: http://bit.ly/TSL-spotify Android: http://bit.ly/TSL-android Stitcher: http://bit.ly/TSL-stitcher

CTA link: https://speakersu.com/the-speakers-life/


Website: https://speakersu.com LinkedIn: http://bit.ly/JTme-linkedin Instagram: http://bit.ly/JTme-ig Twitter: http://bit.ly/JTme-twitter Facebook Group: http://bit.ly/IS-fbgroup

Read full transcript at https://speakersu.com/corporate-executive-to-professional-speaker-sl082/

James Taylor Hi, it's James Taylor, founder of SpeakersU. Today's episode was first aired as part of International Speakers Summit the world's largest online event for professional speakers. And if you'd like to access the full video version, as well as in depth sessions with over 150 top speakers, then I've got a very special offer for you. Just go to InternationalSpeakersSummit.com, where you'll be able to register for a free pass for the summit. Yep, that's right 150 of the world's top speakers sharing their insights, strategies and tactics on how to launch grow and build a successful speaking business. So just go to InternationalSpeakersSummit.com but not before you listen to today's episode.

Hey there, it's James Taylor, and I'm delighted today to be joined by Dr. Shirley Davis. Dr. Shirley Davis is an accomplished international keynote speaker, corporate executive president of SDS, global enterprises, and a master of reinvention. She has over 20 years of business experience and has worked at five of Fortune 50 and 100 companies in various senior and executive leadership roles. Most recently, she was the Global Head of diversity and inclusion and workplace strategies for the Society of Human Resource Management as the world's largest HR organization. She's been featured and quoted in NBC, as D show USA Today, the Wall Street Journal, and The Washington Post, surely is a board member of the National Speakers Association, and holds a bachelor's in pre law, a master's in HR management, and a PhD in business and organization management. And it's my great pleasure to have today. And I feel incredibly under qualified now that I've just got to read all your incredible quote, you're so so share with me show everyone what was going on in your world, just now what's happening

Dr. Shirley Davis is a lot happening. As I am mentioning to you, I'm heading out on a six city tour over the next seven days, I'll be there delivering seven speeches, I do have the absolute pleasure to one of those stops will be at the Les Brown speakers Institute. And I will be one of the speakers there. I traveled with les for about five years. He is one of my mentors, my coaches and certainly a friend of mine. And so he's asked me to come in train some other speakers. So that's one of the things going on. Another great opportunity that's happening is my business has really expanded in a way that I wasn't anticipating. But with all of the revelations and a lot of the conversations going on now with me too. And Time's up. My HR background has really catapulted me into an opportunity now to start doing a lot more work with organizations around how to build more harassment free, respectful and inclusive workplaces. So

James Taylor that's really taken off. And so we're gonna come into that and a little bit as well, because I really want to start talking about especially as it relates to the world of word of speaking in events. But before I do, how did you get started in this this world of speaking, I mentioned earlier, you have this very strong corporate American America kind of background. How did you end up in the in the world of being a professional speaker,

Dr. Shirley Davis professional speaker is one thing, but I actually have been speaking since I was about six years old. My very, very first public speech, was as valedictorian of my kindergarten class and my teachers actually saw something in me early on before I even knew that this is what I was going to be called to do. But professionally, actually, I think it's just it's been a calling for me. I have been working, as you mentioned, corporate America, but in human resources, and much of what I've done in addition to corporate training and development and leadership development, has been speaking on behalf of the company. So I've done everything from media interviews to keynotes to their clients and customers, to just doing training every day for our staff and our leaders and executives. And that's really what prepared me to ultimately then you know, move out on my own and be doing this full time for

James Taylor my business. And as you started taking those first steps to moving from from the corporate world to becoming a professional speaker, who were those early mentors or guides for you who the people that maybe you mentioned, les, Les Brown there as well, but with with other people that can take you under their wing to help you can support you in that journey.

Dr. Shirley Davis Yeah. Les Brown, obviously, was one that I've been following for years anyway, but I actually had been following early on the zigzag colors. I followed the Jolo stains and the TD Jakes because there they are worldwide ministries, and that's that was important to me. They're great, motivational, inspirational speakers as well. So those have been some of my mentors, obviously, I tracked you know, Del Toro McNeal, he's one of my friends as well as a colleague in this business. Simon T. Bailey is a great example of some of those. And then I just I study a lot of different speakers, Tony Robbins, obviously, always looking at who's the best at the top of their Echelon, and what can I learn from them.

James Taylor Now, we have this kind of romantic notion of if you come from the corporate world, and you want to become a speaker of kind of going in there on Monday morning and handing in your notice and say, that's it. I'm going to be an author. I'm going to be a speaker. This is who I am. I'm going to go I'm going to go out there. Is that what it's like in real life. I don't come from the corporate world, but I can have it My imagination like in the movies, that's kind of the speaker's journey going from corporate to there. What was your journey? Did it have anything in resemblance to that?

Dr. Shirley Davis No, actually, it was a journey, because I actually, for me, had to work an exit strategy. So it took me three years to get up the courage to actually put the infrastructure in place to really build the kind of business that I wanted to have before I started. So I literally planned for it over a three year period, while I was still working in corporate America, timing for me is everything. So what I knew was time for me was whenever I started getting more and more requests to come into organizations, and to corporations, to do separate speeches from what I was doing, when I was working at the Society for human resource management, I was getting a lot more of those requests. When I went to talk to General Counsel, about you know, is this something I can do with my five weeks of vacation, and you know, do some of this on my own time? And they said, No. So I thought, okay, so I feel like I'm a little bit confined and limited here. And I really can't live my dream because I'm confined by job description. So I literally worked a three year exit strategy. And during that time, I had to reaffirm my what I had to lay out my business plan my three to five year business plan, I had to get my family on board and get all the moral support and build my network, I had to get my finances in order. And then I had to, like I said, build the infrastructure and get the right resources in place. So I plan to succeed, and I plan to be in this thing for a long time.

James Taylor So it must have been quite a nerve wracking time as well. I mean, going from having that regular paycheck that's coming in, and health insurance, and all those kind of things that go with that as well, to going into a world of really kind of entrepreneurship, as a speaker. Was was that, you know, was there like a particularly dark time in that period, when you were kind of going through those changes where you felt? I just don't know if I can I can do this, if I've got the stuff to be able to make this happen? Or are we all Have you always been this kind of confident type of person?

Dr. Shirley Davis Not at all? Not at all. So that's again, why I said it took me three years, because part of that was building up courage and building up my faith and, and praying and asking, okay, is this really, really what I'm supposed to be doing on my own? And is this the right time. So that's what took me some time to do that. And during that time, is when I was saving up money, I was saving up my bonus checks, I was saving up my vacation of unpaid leave, I was saving up, you know, tax refunds. And so I literally when I left my corporate job, I had a year's worth of salary saved up so that just in case things didn't work out, I had a backup plan to at least pay my bills. So it really was important. And for me, I think having that plan in place. And having thought this through and I talked to so many speakers and business leaders to find out what it was that they did to succeed. But what are the things that they learned in order not to fail, that really helped me but I was very afraid. And that steady paycheck and a six figure income and, and having the benefits and all of that being lost was one of the reasons why I put in place having a backup of having my own one year salary saved up now.

James Taylor You get to speak all over the world now. And you and I were going to be speaking in event together in Singapore coming up soon as well. You and You speak to lots of different industries. So what I'm interested in what strikes you about how the global workforce is changing? Because you're talking to lots and lots of different countries across lots of different industries? What are you seeing the trends there?

Dr. Shirley Davis Absolutely. That's actually one of the sweet spots. For me, that's where companies called me and as their resident expert, and as a global thought leader on the changing workforce, about the fact that not only today, but in the next 15 years. So by 2020, and I talked about inclusion and workforce 2030 is that the world now has become more global and diverse and virtual and mobile, and hyper connected. And also working in a gig economy where people have their side hustles they got other jobs, they're working full time, but they've got online businesses, they're working Uber or Lyft. And they've got you know, Bed and Breakfast is through a lot of those online, you know, rental property. So it's a lot of those changes that we're saying I call it this era of disruption, and the workforce is being disrupted as well, too. So a lot of my work is helping CEOs of these major fortune 100 and fortune 50 companies to revamp their strategy around how they get great talent, how do they engage that talent? How do you develop and grow that talent? And how do you use that talent to build greater inclusion and innovation and, and be more competitive and stay relevant and build a long term business success?

James Taylor You mentioned inclusion, I'm thinking I was actually listening to something today just saying here in the UK, they've been making a lot of changes in terms of having more diverse boards, because there's there was a big study I think was Credit Suisse came out the big study saying those those You know, one of the reasons we went through some, some terrible economic crashes recently was because there was lots of people in the room that look the same had same backgrounds. And so so I can see that's happening within boards, and it's obviously happening within organizations. When it comes to the speaking world, it sometimes feels like that message hasn't quite got through yet, you know, a lot of energy go to. And I mean, I've seen a speaking event recently, and I looked at the number who was speaking. And, frankly, there was a lot of people that looked like me that were there were male and pale. And that was predominantly kind of what it was. So what you see from, from your perspective, in terms of someone that you speak in all these different types of is it changing? Is it? Is it finally starting, that transition is finally starting to happen? Or is it something that we need to be doing just as as speakers and actually speaking up a bit more if we see that lineup in terms of coming through being actually coming forward? A little bit more, we already been booked for it? What can we be doing as speakers?

Dr. Shirley Davis Yeah, that's a great point, James. And it's a, it's a business issue. It's a business strategy. And that's a long term sustainability strategy. So when I was in corporate America, even as I was the Global Head of diversity, and inclusion and workforce strategies, I was working a lot with organizations who were dealing exactly with that. But what I was also finding is that companies, even conferences, were saying, we need to get more diversity, even on our big stage, because people who are coming to our conferences look different. They're from different companies, different cultures, different backgrounds, they're different races, different ethnicities, different genders, and they have different needs. And so they're recognizing that they've got to have a message that resonates with their changing clients and customers and members, as well as their staff. So even though the global marketplace and the global workforce is changing, so are our communities that are consumers, and our customers and members. So it is very critical. I see now that a lot more companies are calling on me, not only because I'm an expert at what I do in the global changing workforce, but also because I happen to be a woman of color, who can command the stage and who is a thought leader. So they get sort of the best of all of those worlds. But they are hearing that same feedback as well, is that they need to change up who is on that lineup of keynote speakers, because everyone tends to look the same. And yet, that's not who's in the audience all the time. So they're very important. You know, one of the point I wanted to hit on real quick was we talked about this global changing marketplace and workplace Think about this. Now we have 51% of the global workforce are women, that means consumers to women are consuming the largest amount of our consumer spending. They're the ones that are paying, you know, for products and services, they're the ones that are making most of the financial decisions, both in their homes, as well as in the communities and then you know, as a consumer. So we got to think about that you look at now there's five generations that are in the workforce, but they're also our consumers. And look what's happening with the drive of millennials, Millennials are changing policy. They're changing organizational strategies and structures. They're changing the way that we do business and the way that we work. So we also have to change the way that we service them as well. So we as leaders, have to know that 75% of the workforce by 2025 is going to be millennials. So think about how we need to change our messages and our format and the way that we communicate with them very differently than 20 years ago, and 10 years ago.

James Taylor Yeah, I mean, that reminds me, I'm thinking now, I was recently involved in doing a some online summit, primarily for event professionals, meeting planners. And one of the things that came through the I'd never really thought of before, but came through very, very strongly said you have to do we're saying you have to remember now that many of the people that are coming into starting in organizations, and even getting into like that first level of management in the corporate world, they have been educated in different ways. The new you know, I don't I don't know when you were at school cause but when I was at school, college, you know, you had someone that was like in the front of the room, the sage on the stage, and they would blast information at you and hoped you would remember some of it. But now he said, so much of the teaching that goes on in the cloud, in classrooms, colleges and schools, is this flipped classroom where they receive a lot of their information online in other ways. So when the role of the teacher or the person in the classroom is to encourage debate and discussion and questions, and it's much more interactive than then something when I was at school, so if that's what's happening in the schools, that's all that's going to come so suddenly, that that person who's in like they're in their 20s is coming into that event, and then suddenly seeing that speaker that's like just blasting information at them for 60 minutes or 90 minutes. It kind of feels a bit old fashioned now,

Dr. Shirley Davis it definitely is very archaic and you're not going to keep people really fully engaged every seven minutes. You really need to be changing up how you're presenting. So my keynotes Not lectures, my keynotes are very interactive, very engaging, very provocative. And I have found over the last seven to 10 years, for me, I've gotten a greater level of response. When I have been, you know, I've now incorporated polling I've incorporated, you know, tweeting, I've incorporated for them to do, you know, conversations with each other, share your experiences, get them more engaged in talking. And as a part of my, you know, my presentation, so you got to keep it changed up, you can't just stay the same and expect that people are going to, you know, and again, as I said, we're in a virtual mobile workforce, but that also means that's who your clients are. And that's probably who your audience participants are. So you've got to be continuously engaging and upgrading. And as a

James Taylor woman of color that's going into speak at these different organizations. What what biases do you do you encounter? And how do you how do you deal with those biases, because I think this is a hard thing, you know, to make myself that is kind of difficult for me to get because, you know, I'm, I am who I am. And I'm not a woman. And so and there are there's the when you go in to speak organizations you can talk to in a certain type of way. So when you come across those those biases, I'm sure you definitely come across those biases and organizations, how do you deal with them, especially when you're talking, you know, and have that conversation with that CEO, that decision maker in the organization,

Dr. Shirley Davis James, we only have 30 minutes for this. So I can't go into my life story. But that's actually as a woman of color, I absolutely have dealt with that. And so I mean, everything from being marginalized to being devalued to being invisible to being at the table, but being assumed to be the one to take the notes or being excused or letting my ideas be shared only for them to be dismissed, and someone else to share that same idea A few minutes later, and everyone thinks it's the best thing since cornflakes, right. So a lot of those things I've experienced, I also now still today, go into organizations, and you know, I'm waiting to meet with someone. And they don't necessarily know that I am the one that's the keynote speaker, if I'm with a colleague of mine, I've got a team of people, sometimes who will go with me, if they are my white or Caucasian colleagues, they will assume that it's one of them that they must be, you know, coming out to meet and I must be the executive assistant or the support person. So I still get a lot of those, I can come off of a stage even now. And I'll have people come up to me and say, Wow, that was awesome. You're very articulate. But you don't say that to white men, right. So it hidden in that are some biases up, I didn't expect you to be that great, or I didn't expect you to be that articulate, or I didn't expect you to be that intelligent. And so I still deal with those. But I've turned those into teachable moments. And because I work with diversity and inclusion and work with leadership coaching all the time. Those are opportunities for me now to excuse the biases, but use it as an opportunity to teach them how they can certainly be much more respectful and sensitive and culturally aware of sometimes the things that they say and do that can minimize a person's value. And what about

James Taylor the hidden biases, because I was thinking the other day about so much of this industry is one of referrals. So I'll get a call from maybe at the conference I spoke at last year, and they'll say this, this the theme of this one is this theme. Who would you recommend? And and so so I'll automatically go. And I'll say Usually, it's probably often the last speaker I had a conversation with on that particular topic. But it has made me think now, when someone I have that conversation with someone that I might I might recommending that person, because they're like me, and that is why I'm recommending that person? And is that just perpetuating something so that that person gets booked for that. And it just happens time and leave? So and bearing in mind we're This is to our community of speakers. What can we be doing as speakers to make changes?

Dr. Shirley Davis I think it's it's twofold, right? So part of your role and responsibility is to be more culturally competent and more sensitive that the workforce, the workplace, our society is becoming much more diverse. So make an intentional decision to broaden your network of people of other cultures and backgrounds and races and genders that you don't traditionally relate to. So for someone like me, on the flip side of that my role and responsibility is to also build relationships that are broad, broad reaching, and of course, as a woman of color, I've learned how to do that anyway, because that's one of the ways to get to the top or to be successful is to, you know, partner with and to get to know and build relationships with those who have the power those who have the position. So I have done that. And I have found by doing that, that I've gotten more referrals from some of my white counterparts. I've gotten referrals from people from different cultures and different countries because I have made an intentional decision to broaden my network, but it has to be To fold as well.

James Taylor So you are now on the board of the National Speakers Association. And, and I remember going to my first Speakers Association mean, not the National Speakers Association, not another speaker Association. I went I went to I went to one in one country, that's not my home country. And and, and I felt a certain kind of thing. And it was very open and very people. And it was very diverse, actually, the people in the room, and I went to another one. And it felt very, it felt quite male, a lot of a lot of blazers, blue blazer type type vibe, and it felt a bit uncomfortable. Even, you know, for me, and I'm like, is this really the kind of group I want to be kind of part of is this really my values and everything? So I know, this is a subject you're really passionate about, you know, your role now, as a leadership role, the NSA, the NSA, that the organization and the membership can more reflect the world, you know, what's going to what's going to the diversity of in organizations in the world, what some of the things, some of the major projects, the ideas that you have, in terms of changing things there.

Dr. Shirley Davis Yeah, actually, I'm one of many on the board. But I really appreciate the fact that that was a priority for last year's board was to make sure that they were being much more reflective and considerate of the fact that their membership is changing, as well as the world around them. And they've got to learn to be more relevant and that they've got to reflect that in their membership and in their products, their programming their services, as well and walk the talk. I'm like it when I first walked in to my first annual conference, and even to chapter meetings, I felt the same way I didn't feel like I belonged. I didn't feel a part of I didn't see a lot of people who look like me, it was very cliquish, sort of that old boy network, right. And so I felt like, okay, now I'm in diversity and inclusion, I understand this. So I can either be a change agent, or I can just walk away. And you know, and go and do something else with my life. But I felt like there was a role that I could play that, you know, with my business experience, and background with my corporate experience, and having worked in a membership Association, I thought, wow, I can really add some value here by helping them helping the leaders to be much more understanding and aware and sensitive of how the workforce is changing, and help them put in some strategy. So everything from making sure that our programming now reflects more diversity of our society, make sure that we're looking at technology in different ways, and multiple channels of how we can deliver to so many people who have different learning styles and thinking styles and ways of communicating to looking at our chapter strategies, and how can we make sure that our chapters are being much more inclusive and appealing and attractive to diverse talent in their communities as well. So those are some of the things that I can do. It's going to take a while, you know, I'm going to be on the board for three years or more. But it will take a while but at least I'm glad to see that we're focusing on that now.

James Taylor And in your speaking career, this this journey you've had, was there a key aha moment or lightbulb moment where you went? Okay, this is direction I want to go with my speaking or this is a type of type of organization or type of client, you want to do really speak to

Dr. Shirley Davis Yeah, my topic because I'm talking about the global changing workforce? And how do you build an inclusive and high performance, workplace culture? And how do you build the best talent? And how do you, you know, have leaders that are walking the talk and leaders of excellence. So that is a topic that is actually universal? Many people are looking at that, because I can tell you, there's so many more people that work for bad bosses. And they work for toxic cultures or cultures that are static or complacent or rigid, or risk averse. So I'm helping them to shift and make those transitions. So I think for me, I I've had my aha moments as I was going out and doing more training and just seeing people saying, Wow, the way that you present this and position this as a business strategy as a long term, sustainable strategy and business model and the way that you make it practical and relevant, this is something that we need. And so those have been my aha is probably about seven years ago, I realized, gosh, there's a real need for this. And people that look like me aren't out there speaking about it and talking about it in a way that doesn't make people feel offended or insulted or they feel like they've you know, gone through the wringer because of the training. I'm talking to them from the terms of how do you make sure that you are, you know, appealing to an attractive to great talent, loyal customers, great members? And how does this contribute to your bottom line? So positioning it as a business strategy has been a real eye opener and a long term business strategy for me.

James Taylor And I think that's probably the reason why, I mean, sometimes, you know, some of these things get put very easily in the breakout session space. And, and you don't do that you are the keynote speaker, you are that person at opening, you know, because it's also setting a tone for an entire organization or an association as well. So I think I really commend you for, for being able to do that because that's a hard thing I think to do to be able to, either it's not just on this topic, there's lots of subjects we can think of which can If not careful, then get ready to get moved to the the breakout session space.

Dr. Shirley Davis Yeah. I mean, I'm not afraid to do breakouts. But I found that over the last four or five years, they've wanted me as the keynoter because I appeal to a broad audience. Now, I will tell you that I'm speaking to manufacturing environments, I'm speaking to architects, I'm speaking to engineers, I'm speaking to scientists, and I'm speaking to a majority white male audience, but they resonate with me because I'm talking their language. And because I diffuse a lot of the stereotypes and the myths, and I think I'm able to relate to them in a very personable way, but in a way that's practical, that they can take it back and make a change in a difference, where they haven't walked away feeling like they've been, you know, completely insulted

James Taylor to do my practicalities you're about to hit on the road, you've got a big speaking to happening just now. What is in that speaker bag? What isn't that bag that you carry with these two, all of your speaking engagements, you'd never leave home or the office without

Dr. Shirley Davis in my speaker bag, I've always got to have my presentations on my USB flash drive. So I always have a USB flash drive, just in case something happens with the computer, it doesn't work technology is broke down. There's always someone that has an extra extra laptop there. And if they don't, I always have my presentation in a hardcopy so that I can refer to it most of the time, I don't need it, I can get up and speak this stuff like that, you know, like I drink water. I also always have backup cords, I have HDMI and I find that some companies I go into their technology is not up to date. So I've always got a backup for making sure that my my chords work with their, their their technology, I always have peanut butter crackers, because when I'm traveling so much I need energy. And I need that fiber and protein to keep me going because there are days where I am like on a plane right after I speak, I don't have time to eat. And so that gives me a little bit more energy to go. And I always have my square because you never know when there's going to be a great opportunity to sell something so

James Taylor Oh, awesome. And then what about when it comes to? You mentioned square? That's kind of one an app or two? Are there any other online resources or apps or tools you find really useful for yourself as a speaker?

Dr. Shirley Davis Yeah, I do. I mean, obviously, I think all of us use TripAdvisor. That's that's very, very important. I stay a lot on social media. So I'm always kind of looking at what's going on I love are we that we have a CSP link. I'm constantly looking at opportunities there that people are using. But I think for me, I stay mostly in tune to just some of the social media, whether it's YouTube or Vimeo or LinkedIn or Instagram that keeps me up to date on what's going on. And I can find anybody anywhere that way. And then what

James Taylor about a book if there was, I want you to imagine maybe there's someone watching this just now that was in that position that you were in a number of years ago. They're working in a corporate job, they maybe really enjoy their job, but it's it's not necessarily fulfilling. They know that there's something more there and they want to make that transition want to make that journey and they want to do it in quite a deliberate way. Is there any books that you would recommend to them to kind of switch their mind to this or even just going to help them get started on that journey?

Dr. Shirley Davis Yeah, there's a couple I really love a good friend, my good friend, Delatour McNeil has a great book called caught between a dream and a job. And that's really all about how to make that exit from your full time job that you're getting a paycheck at, but it's not your dream. And so how do you sort of make that shift in that change? I love this great book by Myles Munroe called passing it on. And it's all about why we do what we do in life, having a purpose and making sure that whatever we do that it's adding impact wherever we go. There's a third book I really love by Simon Simon, that called start with y. So always just kind of understanding why you're doing something and ensuring that you're asking those right kinds of questions before you take that leap and jump out and do it. And then certainly I think for any speaker, joining the NSA is a great opportunity and great resources there but paid to speak book, more business all those are great books to get started as well. That's great, some amazing resource, they will put as many of these on the on the show notes here as possible as well. And kind of final question for you. I want you to imagine you woke up tomorrow morning, and we'll let you choose where you wake up which city which country you wake up in, but you've got all the skills you've acquired as a speaker over the years, but no one knows you, you know no one you have to restart. What would you do? How would you restart your career? You know, I would restart it the way that I started this one I would started deliberately, slowly, intentionally and with the strategy, but I will also start like what I did when I jumped out I didn't immediately just quit my job. And then the next day I was open for business. I actually quit my job as I told you over three years and then when I gave them my notice I gave them a six month notice I gave it to them in January and I didn't leave till July. But I also partnered with Les Brown, so I started speaking with him going to speakers training and then traveling with him around the globe. We did five different countries, over a five year period and then certainly all Around the US. So that would be one of the things that I would say do is get with someone else who's already doing this and use them as your mentor, use them as an opportunity to train you and to grow and you know, be able to learn more about what to do, don't just do it by yourself. And don't just start that, you know, just from scratch, you got to be out there and partnering with someone while you're building your business. I think that's such great advice. I mean, of all this, of all the speakers I've been talking with, is that one of the thing that keeps saying out, which is the importance of having some kind of mentorship as well, in the fight, you had Les Brown, like one of the greatest speakers of the world is pretty, pretty amazing as well. So I'm going to be really interested in in the years to come watching you be a mentor, for other speakers that are coming through as well. And I think if this summit still exists in in a few years time, I'm looking forward to interviewing those women, those men who have come through and have you've mentored and helped them as well. So that's, that's, that's something I'm sure we're gonna definitely see. I love that I actually have a mastermind group specifically on helping you launch a profitable consulting and speaking business. And I've got a great number of people learning just like that, how do you do this? And so I'm teaching them so I'd love for you to do that. Well, that's great. So if people want

James Taylor to learn about that, and they want to learn more about you and your speaking, maybe the they're getting that call from that, that meeting planner saying Who should we get this year and they want to refer you and where should they go? What's the best place for them to go to

Dr. Shirley Davis absolutely go directly to DrShirleydavis.com. Or you can definitely go to my LinkedIn profile. You can also find me on LinkedIn learning I'm an author there launched a new course called inclusive leadership. And you'll hear some of my personal stories about my journey of becoming a speaker as well as a leader. So there's a number of ways that you can find me but Dr. Shirley Davis calm

James Taylor Well, she's been a pleasure as always speaking to you I'm really looking forward to getting to meet in person when we're in Singapore at that event together. And I would I wish you all the best on your on your speaking to the you're just about to embark on

Dr. Shirley Davis thank you I wish you all the best to thanks again for the opportunity.

James Taylor Today's episode was sponsored by speakers you the online community for speakers and if you're serious about your speaking career then you can join us because you membership program. I'll speak as you members receive private one on one coaching with me hundreds of hours of training content access to a global community to help them launch and build a profitable business around their speaking message and expertise. So just head over to SpeakersU.com to learn more.

#speakersU #speakerslife