An Interview with Liz Jackson
If you could speak at any event, past or future, what would it be?
Anything with a responsive audience. I particularly enjoy panel discussions when I share the panel with Government Ministers or CEO’s of large organisations. This is best when we take questions from the audience and the panel are a mix of people from various backgrounds expressing different views in response to the questions.
How did the corporate speaking start?
It started in 2003 when I won the national Women Mean Business Award sponsored by T Mobile and The Sunday Express. I received a lot of PR as a result and then had a call from a lady in Dubai asking me to go and speak at an event called Entrepreneurs in Dubai.
And your last event?
The Everywoman Conference in Glasgow. Audience of around 200 women entrepreneurs.
Which event has been your favourite and why?
There’s been loads of great ones but one that stands out was speaking for the Institute of Travel and Tourism in Gran Canaria. I shared the platform with Charles Kennedy and Bill Bryson and the audience were very charismatic travel people who were responsive to the talks. The hotel and location were stunning. The whole thing was a huge success!
Who would you most like to share a platform with?
Happy with pretty much anyone really. I’d like to meet Simon Cowell or Richard Branson so sharing a platform with either of them would be pretty special.
On average, how many times a year do you speak at corporate events?
It probably averages out to about 35 – 40.
Do you use powerpoint?
Most of the time, yes!
Are you as happy speaking to 50 as to 1,000 people?
How do you like to be introduced?
Ideally? “I’d like to introduce Liz Jackson”. Short and sweet. I hate it when someone introduces me by reading my bio. I’d rather I told my story.
Do you always like to do a briefing call before the event?
Yes, it does help to know who the audience are and what their main interests will be; and to make sure the organiser is happy with what I intend to say.
What are the most asked for topics?
Inspiration, motivation, leadership, customer services, entrepreneurship and how to increase sales, telemarketing.
Is your speech interactive with audience participation?
I often ask a couple of questions during main talk, but most of the time I do a Q&A session when I have finished speaking.
Do you have any funny/embarrassing speaking anecdotes you care to share?
Maybe the funniest one was when I was speaking with Charles Kennedy in Gran Canaria. He should have been on the same flight as me from Gatwick arriving in Gran Canaria the evening before the conference. It transpired that he had missed the flight but the organisers had arranged another flight at 06:00 in the morning from Heathrow, so he would arrive in time to speak. I received a message in the morning that he had gone to Gatwick instead of Heathrow for the flight and hence would be turning up. It was all reported in the national papers the following day!
Your favourite film?
The Harry Potter series.
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