Providing Feedback for Speakers

As most of you know, I do a lot of presentations each year, mostly at local code camps. As a speaker, it is always great to see new people in my talks and answer questions since in almost every talk, someone asks a question I haven’t heard before. One of the things that most speakers, including myself, like getting is feedback. We want to know what you thought of the presentation, both the material and the delivery. It used to be that most code camps passed out evaluation forms to provide this feedback. The problem with forms is that they were easy to loose and required a person to manually tally up all the evaluations to generate an overall rating. As a result, most code camps have stopped passing out evaluation forms. While I understand the reasons behind this, I still like getting feedback. It’s one of the tools I use to continually become a better speaker.

In an attempt to solve this problem I found SpeakerRate, which is a community site for event organizers, attendees, and speakers.

  • Event organizers can find speakers, learn about talks they’ve given in the past, and determine who would be a good match for the event they’re organizing.
  • Event attendees can provide constructive feedback to speakers, track the talks they’ve attended, and research upcoming talks that they might attend.
  • Event speakers can get valuable constructive feedback directly from attendees and find out how they can improve their content and delivery for their next talk. They can also establish a SpeakerRating, which will help them earn future speaking opportunities.

The nice thing about SpeakerRate is that I can provide a speaker profile. This is similar to SpeakerWiki, but the biggest difference is that I can list all of the presentations I have given. I went through and added all of the presentations I have given since 2007 just so I have a convenient and ordered list (there are a total of 35 past presentations and 2 coming up).

The other nice thing is that if you attend (or attended) one of my presentations, you can go to that presentation on the site and provide feedback. This feedback is automatically incorporated in to an overall speaker rating. You don’t even need to have an account although you do need to provide a name and email address (this is done to help minimize the amount of bogus feedback provided). SpeakerWiki also allows you to provide feedback, but it’s more general in nature since you can’t list specific presentations.

If you’ve heard me talk, please do me a favor and provide some feedback.