WELCOME TO MY WORLD
A snapshot into the lives of the people who hire us
Francine B. Read’s vision is to create a company built on relationships. As the owner of Voices Contemporary Lecture Series for Women and
Great WomenSpeakers.com, she has
created many of them over the years.
Read is in her 17th season of running
a lecture series featuring the world’s
most interesting women. As a meeting
planner and a bureau, she understands
both business viewpoints. Read often
starts as a buyer and then morphs
into a broker. But no matter what
hat she wears, she always focuses on
win-win experience. I want to
work with solution-oriented
professionals who go the
extra mile. It drives me crazy
when speakers need their
hand held, or can’t figure
things out for themselves.
Give me an example of someone
who doesn’t “get it.”
That’s easy. Male speakers send me
packets of information and ask me
to represent them. Are these guys
serious? They sent their packs to
style. If you can’t explain it or show
me in a video, it’s impossible to discuss
your skills, talents and abilities with
Molly Cox: What’s it like working in
a niche market of women?
Francine Read: It’s very interesting.
Women understand the benefits of
long-term business relationships. There
are some amazing women whose life
stories can change our lives. I learn
from them every day.
How can speakers enhance their
relationship with a bureau?
They should respond to a request
promptly, even if they’re just
confirming their availability with a
“yes” or “no” on a Blackberry. If I
Do you see any business trends?
Business slowed last summer due to
the economy. Many corporate clients
didn’t hold meetings, or they had an
in-house person speak at their events.
“Relationships are built on trust, so be trustworthy. Do
what you say you’re going to do. My clients trust me.
For me to keep their trust, I must trust the speaker.”
Is it easy to work with women?
I think most women are easy to work
with, and most women in this business “get it.” But there are a few prima
donnas and head cases out there. I can’t
help those who don’t “get it.” They
either do or they don’t.
What is the “get it’ factor?
If you’re working with me, make it a
don’t get a response quickly, I’ll move
on to other speakers. Speakers also
should be flexible because we are
getting more requests that require
wiggle room in fees and services
because of the economy.