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What Makes a Good Business Motivational Speaker?


Motivational speakers provide a springboard to change and success through their message.

What Makes a Good Business Motivational Speaker?

Having a motivational speaker present at your business event can be a transformative experience for your employees. The right motivational speaker can help energise and inspire your audience to make positive change by identifying the things holding them back and giving people tools and ideas to help them move forward.

This article will examine what motivational speakers can offer businesses and how to choose the right speaker for your event.

What is a motivational speaker in business?

A motivational speaker is someone who shares their own life experience and knowledge to help to inspire others to positive outcomes.

In business, a motivational speaker is usually an expert on a particular subject matter who can help the audience grow and succeed by encouraging and empowering individuals and teams. A speaker will traditionally have an extensive background in their chosen field and will be able to speak about it with experience and authority and in an engaging, inspiring and often entertaining manner.

When presenting to an audience, a motivational speaker will use positive, energised language to encourage people to think deeply about different areas of their life, career, or work and to identify areas for improvement. They’ll promote confidence and self-belief in individuals through their inspiring delivery.

A business motivational speaker can help to unite your team towards a common goal and to help remove barriers to growth and progress.

Motivational speakers are passionate about helping people to grow and can provide a springboard to change and success through their message.

What to look for when choosing a motivational speaker?

There are many different motivational speaker types, so it’s important to think carefully about your business’s needs and what you are looking for. Choosing the right speaker will ensure that your employees get the most value from the experience.

Here are some tips to help you find the perfect motivational speaker.

What do you want your audience to get out of it?

When choosing a motivational speaker, you should be thinking first and foremost about your audience: who are they, and what do you want them to get out of the experience?

Perhaps you want your employees to be more confident when talking to clients or stakeholders? In this case, find a motivational speaker who can help them manage nerves and empower them with the self-belief they need.

Maybe you’d like to improve your staff’s wellbeing? In this case, you can seek a motivational speaker who can talk about the benefits of time management, the right work-life balance and how to achieve it.

Most professional motivational speakers will be delighted to work with you to outline your audience’s needs and how they can fulfil them.

What is the theme of your event? 

Are you looking for a motivational speaker to present at a specific type of event or away day? Is there a particular area where you’d like your employees to feel more confident?

When planning your event, consider what you hope to achieve. It will help you choose a motivational speaker with relevant experience who can offer your team valuable insights and advice.

You should also think about where you want your speaker to appear in the day’s running order. Do you want someone to whip the crowd up at the beginning, or do you want to save that energy for the end of the day so people leave on a high? Do you want someone to speak for thirty minutes, an hour, or a full day? Knowing the answers to these questions will help you to plan your event and help you find the right speaker within your budget.

What change do you want to see in your business?

The desire for change is one of the fundamental reasons for engaging a motivational business speaker: they inspire audiences and motivate them to do things differently.

It’s worth thinking carefully about what type of change you would like to see within your business and hiring a motivational speaker who will be able to help you to bring about that change.

You can read biographies of individual motivational speakers and online testimonies to see how businesses have benefitted from their expertise. Researching the right motivational speaker for you will ultimately help your business change and grow.

How does a motivational speaker engage with an audience?

Motivational business speakers are skilled presenters who use various techniques to engage their audience.

1) They tell fantastic stories

One of the best qualities of a business motivational speaker is their ability to share their experience through storytelling. Great motivational speakers will engage audiences by telling compelling stories based on their experience and what they have learned from it, rather than just sharing information. It makes presentations much more compelling and easier to listen to!

By telling their personal stories, motivational speakers establish credibility in the eyes of their audience, who are more likely to believe in and take action on the advice offered.

2) They talk about the losses as well as the wins

 Motivational speakers don’t shy away from the bad stuff: the times when it didn’t go well, the disastrous business decisions or the terrible outcomes. Instead, they use their own experience of failure as part of their storytelling to show how you can triumph through adversity.

 Acknowledging failure is important in engaging with an audience: it makes speakers more relatable. Generally, it makes for a more interesting, believable story too.

3) They understand body language and tone of voice

 A great motivational speaker will command their audience through expert body language, voice control and eye contact.

 Powerful speakers will know how to control their voice and use a variety of tone and pace to inspire their audience and whip them up at just the right time.

4) They involve their audience

The best motivational speakers talk to their audience, not at them. They involve their audience, asking questions and listening to people’s experiences to help tailor their presentations.

For example, at Body Talk, our team of speakers will work with audiences to discover their challenges and goals, tailoring our content to ensure that people get the most value.

Who are strong business motivational speakers?

Body Talk is proud to have an expert team of speakers who can work with your teams to motivate and inspire them to increase their impact.

Here are some of our team:

Richard Newman is an award-winning expert in Leadership Communication, Storytelling and Influence, working in advanced communication since 1995. Richard specialises in showing leaders how to speak with greater impact and influence. He is regularly featured on BBC London Radio and is the author of the best-selling book ‘You Were Born to Speak’. In 2014 he won the Cicero Grand Award, the most coveted award in the world for speechwriting. In December 2018, he published his book ‘You Were Born to Speak’, which on launch day ranked with Amazon as #1 best-seller on both kindle and hardcover editions.

Christian Billet was trained at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama and subsequently received a scholarship to attend the Royal Academy of Music in London, where he worked with the vocal advisor to Sir Cameron Macintosh and Lord Andrew Lloyd-Webber. Christian worked as a professional singer in London’s West End, including shows such as Phantom of the Opera, Martin Guerre and Evita, and Show Boat at the Royal Albert Hall. Christian delivers large masterclasses, small group workshops and 1-2-1 VIP Personal Coaching. He regularly supports Senior Business Leaders and CEOs with Public Speaking engagements, helping them to flex their natural styles to suit their messages and audiences better.

Alina Jenkins is an award-winning presenter & broadcaster. She has worked extensively across BBC radio & television since 2001, appearing regularly on Countryfile, BBC News and Radio 4. Alina has hosted thousands of radio shows and presented tens of thousands of weather forecasts to millions. She loves sharing the skills and techniques you need to appear confident, stay calm under pressure and engage your audience. Alina has a wealth of experience in communicating science and is a great speaker for audiences who want to discover ways to bring complex and dry ideas to life. 

You can meet the rest of our expert training team here.

Who benefits from motivational speakers?

Business motivational speakers can benefit a whole team: from CEOs to new starters.

For people in their early careers, a motivational speaker can help develop the confidence and gravitas they may lack when presenting to teams or speaking to clients.

Mid-career employees may benefit from learning how to look at ideas from creative new angles or to navigate challenges and objections more easily.

Senior management teams can also benefit from motivational speakers on subjects such as deep questioning and listening skills or advanced persuasion techniques.

Some of the best business motivational speakers will be able to deliver presentations which are helpful to all company employees simultaneously.

Get in touch

If you would like to learn more about how a Body Talk speaker can engage your team or how we can teach you how to become a better business speaker, get in touch with us today.


Richard Newman Speaker Showreel from Body Talk on Vimeo.