I’d like to blame Dean Hunter, Past President of the Federation of Genealogical Societies for planting the doubts that led to changes in my thinking, but to be honest, the doubt was percolating on the back burners of my mind for some time. It was at the National Genealogical Society conference in Milwaukee in 2002. Dean and I shared a room. One evening he told me about a conversation with his friend David Rencher, about what they were taught in their beginning genealogy classes. We were on our way to dinner with David in a great seafood restaurant. “What were you taught?” David and Dean asked. Continue reading
Category Archives: Teaching Genealogy
I spotted a notice in a British genealogical publication that some noted professional genealogist was holding a surgery at a certain time or place. I smiled. My English cousins speak as peculiar a language as my American nieces and nephews, just not the same language. A surgery is an event where you can visit a specialist and discuss a problem or issue. In North American English we often use the term “clinic” the same way. So what is a Genealogy Clinic and how could it be used?
Spent almost three hours with the apprentice on Wednesday. She’s really pumped up from her reading and studies. She’s been finishing an excellent course, “Researching in the Family history Center” developed by Dr. Penny Christensen for the National Institute for Genealogical Studies and has come back every day excited by new discoveries. And while this was great, she was excited to tell me about reading Helen F.M. Leary’s “Problem Analyses and Research Plans” chapter 14 in Elizabeth Shown Mills, Professional Genealogy: A manual for researchers, writers, editors, lecturers and librarians. (Genealogical Publishing, 2001) . Let me tell you a bit about what she experienced.
Tommy Yan, a dynamic Asian-American motivational speaker has some interesting ideas on e-newletters to elevate them to a higher standard and motivate your potential and present clients for your genealogy speaking venture. Too many of those e-newletters or E-zines are 100% information free. Here’s Tommy’s seven deadly sins for e-zines
In the last year or so I have been thinking about doing a free newsletter to serve certain potential clients. E-newsletters or E-zines can be a very simple way to add value to my services and keep my name and services before the public. Many professional seminar speakers have them, as do genealogy service outfits. Continue reading
Here are a few more reasons for you to write a glowing review of every lecture or workshop you deliver.
Content generation. By making notes about each speech and recording them on your blog, you are managing your content for future speeches and books. One speaker told me, “I can’t tell you how many times I referred back to old post-speech blog postings to help me with a current project.” I find that intriguing .
Attract new customers. When people read about how you helped a certain genealogy or historical organization, they’re going to say, “Hmmm…I wonder if he could do that for my group? Maybe I should give him a call…” And you’d better believe getting folks to call you about speaking is a whole lot better than making a cold call.
Customer service. By blogging about your speech, the venue, the client and the audience, you compliment your customer. think about that for a moment. Be sure to email your meeting planner contact and invite him/her to read the glowing post. And be sure to link to the host’s web site. It’s the best thank-you note in the world.
Credibility and celebrity. Blogging your lectures results in more credibility for you as a speaker, and enhanced celebrity status when you incorporate all these blogging ideas, especially if other blogs/Web sites link to your post.
So what do you think? I think I need more of these links back to my clients!
One of our regular readers suggests we look at
For an example. Here’s a test. Read Mark howells essay, check out this site, and tell me, what you think Mark would say?
Mark Howells, back in 2002, wrote a very interesting article on designing on-line classes genealogists. His suggestion deserve a closer look. so check them out at
The other day I received a message from my friends at SpeakerNetNews asking this all important question. its a good one to ask. You would be surprised at the number of talented genealogy speakers and teachers out there who think too small and aim too low. the same goes for most professional genealogists– too small thoughts; too low aspirations, in my humble opinion. Those sort of thoughts and aspirations are best left to the mediocre speakers, teachers and and researchers. You, gentle reader are better than that.
Here’s what the message said:
In my travels in the west I have encountered many inovative ideas in genealogy education. While speaking at a conference in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan I heard about a genealogy society with some creative thinkers and teachers. As a group they offered a beginnig genealogy class in the local night school program.