Alumna, Tammy Bleck, shares how people can talk for a living

Manny D. Araujo

While most may dread speaking in front of a crowd, CSUN alumna Tammy Bleck, has made living out of it.

She spoke about earning an income in public speaking, at the CSUN Alumni Association event in the USU Grand Salon on Sept 17.

Beck spoke to students, alumni and guests about everything, from getting started to negotiating your wages as a professional speaker.

“Your smile is your logo, your personality is your business card and the way people feel after spending time with you is your trademark,” said Bleck. “Your speech is solid gold.”

She also discussed the importance of taking risks as a way to further your career and at the same time put the effort to work carefully on the speech’s message and delivering it.

“It’s no secret that speaking is one of the three biggest fears: death, speaking and spiders,” said Bleck. “However, not taking a risk is really one of the riskiest things you can do because it won’t set you apart from everyone else.”

Bleck, who is in her 60s, said she decided to enter the field after her life reached a low point. She said she did not enter public speaking until late in her life, after she had been divorced and bankrupt.

Bleck believes her life experience helps her create a connection to her audience.

“People who have been down and out make a connection to me,” Bleck said. “Having a commonality creates a bond and that is exactly what you want in your speech.”

Bleck said giving speeches based on experience is part of the reason many people can enter the field of public speaking. She said people sometimes prefer to listen to a speech that is given from experience rather than expertise.
As an added way to show her audience how to enter the public speaking world and make a career of it, Bleck will host a workshop Oct. 8 on maintaining a successful and profitable blog, which she said is key to landing more gigs as a public speaker.