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Here's what to expect working with a team of experts

Have you ever wondered what it's like to work with an agent or speakers bureau? Karen Harris and Jane Atkinson breakdown everything you can expect as a speaker!


In a recent podcast, Karen Harris had the opportunity to catch up with her long time friend, Jane Atkinson, and discuss what it takes to work in the speaking industry through Bureaus and Agents. 

With 28 years of friendship and experience, Karen and Jane breakdown the key highlights of working with bureaus or your own personal agent.


Agency Work

From representing 2 local speakers to running a full management agency, Karen showcases the importance of being able to leverage assets and understanding a speakers value not only with clients but also with her employees. 

As a speaker, new or veteran, there are many layers to creating a solid relationship with an agent or bureau. Karen explains that working with speakers means as an agent, they should be just as invested in their personal growth as the speaker. Finding a value match between the two and taking the time to build a strong relationship, or what she calls “date”, leads to having strong, cohesive branding and clear speaking value. Post dating, the working marriage will be visible resulting in proper marketing, speaker bookings, fee increases and business management. 

Karen and her team have taken the time to carefully build a roster of speakers with whom they share the same passions, ethics and leadership skills.


Bureau Work 

Another opportunity as a speaker is to work with Bureaus. As Karen mentions, this has the potential to introduce you to a larger client list, however, there is the risk that it may take longer to get your foot in the door due to a higher volume of roster. You become part of the database. 

Karen and Jane share tips they have learnt over the years to increase your chances of success with bureaus and how to make a lasting impression when you’re looking to join their team. 


It’s All In The Details

As a whole, between agencies and bureaus, there are details such as fees, travel and speaker management that Karen and Jane bring to light. They review the different levels of agency fees, net fees, travel charges and co-brokering. 

From their successes over the years, the ladies dive deep into the do’s and dont’s in the speaking industry and a glimpse of what it takes to work with agents and bureaus.


Listen to the full podcast here!