Are you eager to move "from free to fee"?
Hi! I'm Jim and I'm your truth-from-the-trenches guide as you journey toward your exciting new career as a paid professional speaker!
I'm Jim Barber, and I'm a serial entrepreneur with a long and eclectic career. I've been a technical trainer, keynoter, voice talent, master of ceremonies, podcaster, TEDx Talker, body double (I provided the hunky neck-down physique for George Washington on the cover of Dr. Rebecca Staton-Reinstein's Conventional Wisdom), workshop facilitator, copy editor, book publisher, e-commerce developer, web designer, and more.
I've been speaking professionally for almost 45 years. I've spoken to audiences at hundreds of organizations around the world, including the European Space Agency [Germany], the Royal Aircraft Establishment [England], Ontario Hydroelectric [Canada], the Atlantic Underwater Testing and Evaluation Center [Bahamas], Linköpings Universitet [Sweden], and a wide range of organizations across the United States including the Miami Parking System, San Diego Gas and Electric, NASA / Goddard, and Texas Instruments.
I'm also the author of 18 books, including The Complete Professional Speaker's Office Kit (described by Glenna Salsbury, past president of the National Speakers Association, as "the best single investment you can make in your speaking career") and The Professional Speaker's Mastery (described as "packed with the stuff you need to run a professional practice as a speaker or consultant!" by Randy Gage, author of Why You're Dumb, Sick and Broke). (Note: both these books are out-of-print, so do not order them. They've both been replaced by Pro Speaker YOU!)
I've also lent my voice to a variety of audio projects ranging from product announcer ("But wait! There's more!") to medical voice-overs ("Now review the placement of the nasogastric, naosesophageal, esophagostomy and jejunostomy tubes" – that one took quite a few tries to get it right) to being interviewed on a variety of podcasts. I've also done voice work for a number of professional speakers, including Dr. Rebecca Staton-Reinstein, Ellen Bristol, Ruben Perczek, and Randy Gage.
Throughout the years, I've been committed to the speaking industry. For example, I've....
- been an active member of Toastmasters International for over 30 years;
- twice served as president of the Florida Speakers Association;
- served as the Florida Liaison for the National Speakers Association;
- received multiple honors, including FSA's Sam Edwards Award and the Bill Gove Lifetime Achievement Award, and I was the first recipient of FSA's Jim Barber Leadership Excellence Award, named in my honor; and
- gave the closing TED Talk, Wake Up and Dream On, at the 2016 West Broward High TEDx event.
But it's not just speaking. I've been excited about the awesome potential of technology, long before the World Wide Web was even designed!
- In 1981, I purchased my first computer system, a Radio Shack "Trash 80" Model II with a whopping 64 K (that's right, youngsters, "64 K") of memory, three 8-inch floppy drives daisy-chained together to give me 750KB of offline storage, and a daisy-wheel printer which could print an entire page in less than a minute (gasp!). The whole system cost me a little under $10K (in 1980 dollars), but it quickly paid for itself as I launched one of the first desktop-publishing businesses.
- I was developing content for the Internet in the early 90's (that's before the World Wide Web was even operational),
- As an experiment, I created my first standalone web site in 1995, the same year that Internet Explorer was released.
- I created my flagship website, The Barber Shop, in 1997 (6 months before Google was created).
- Just 3 years later, the May 2000 issue of PC World magazine (pictured above) recognized The Barber Shop as a "top ten in the world" site for professional speakers!
- Then in 2006, I became more than a participant in the World Wide Web... I created Jim's Web World to supply domain names, security certificates, hosting and more to Toastmasters, professional speakers, meeting and event planners - in short, all members of the speaking and special events industry.
As you can see, most of these activities involve either technology or speaking. And all of them involve helping people to reach their full potential.
Now the question is... what happens when you combine a familiarity with technology, a love of speaking, a 40+ year career as a serial entrepreneur, and a passion for helping people? That's right! You get Pro Speaker YOU, the premier site to help you make a living, make a difference, and have fun doing it!
I'm Jim Barber. That's my story and I'm sticking to it.