When my kind ex-colleague suggested I consider speaking at New Stars of Data I felt humbled but also excited for the opportunity. I submitted my session and was pleasantly surprised when my session was accepted for New Stars of Data. My nerves then began to kick in.
I was paired with my wonderful mentor Jess who supported me in the lead up to the event, as a sounding board and test audience. As an experienced speaker Jess had some really helpful insights to share with me about speaking at events and I would absolutely recommend working with a mentor if you are considering speaking at an event for the first time.
I prepared my session over the course of a few months and in the lead up to the event practised by doing many run-throughs to myself and also with Jess. On the day of the event I was very nervous, but after the first 10-15 minutes of my session I was able to relax and really get in to presenting my topic. The topic of my session – Power Platform, is something I am really passionate about and spend a lot of time working on so I felt more comfortable once I got in to doing the demo.
My main motivation for delivering the session was to give back to the data community who have helped me so much over the past few years. I was absolutely delighted after the event when an attendee reached out to confirm their understanding of a topic I spoke about in my session – they wanted to implement the solution and I was able to help them. This made all the work and the nerves I’d experienced worth it. I am completely self-taught in BI so to be able to give back to the community who have played an integral part in getting me to where I am today has been hugely rewarding and is the reason I hope to speak at more events.
If you are reading this and thinking about speaking at an event for the first time my advice would be to choose a topic you are truly passionate about and look out for events where you can get paired with a mentor. Being a part of New Stars of Data was a fantastic experience for me and the community around speaking at Data and BI events is a wonderful thing to be a part of.
Hope to see you at an event soon, Rosie ?