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Don’t Pick Death Over Public Speaking!

Well, I’m 14-and-a-half minutes into my 15 minutes of fame. It has been a great ride being president of AWCI, an international organization of more than 2,200 member companies. I’m glad to say AWCI is a well-oiled machine with a professional staff and dedicated board who know what they are doing—they had my back all year.

One of the benefits of being president was having the chance to represent AWCI through visits and speaking engagements at our chapters across the nation and even on the other side of the world at AWCIANZ, our sister group in Australia and New Zealand.

Speaking of speaking, I have to admit the thought of getting up in front of a crowd of strangers and giving a speech on the values of AWCI played with my head. The values part was easy, getting up in front of an audience wasn’t easy.

From funny-man Jerry Seinfeld: “According to most studies, people’s number one fear is public speaking. Number two is death. Now this means to the average person, if you have to go to a funeral, you’re better off in the casket than doing the eulogy.”

While public speaking does not come naturally to me, and maybe not to you, I want to say it’s worth it. The best thing I learned is that you are not speaking to strangers, but rather to new and old friends and for the most part, people just like me. I would encourage every AWCI member to participate at some level in our programs and on our committees and boards. Just consider the friendships you make, and then add in the tips you pick up. It’s a win-win situation.

To sum up, this year has been the highlight of my life with the association. I am so honored to have played a part in our industry. I may be leaving office, but you’ll still see me at AWCI’s Convention & INTEX Expo, at AWCI’s Industry Executives’ Conference & Committee Meetings and at the trips in between. It’s been a great year, went by fast, well, except for that speaking part. If I can do it, so can you!

In addition to being 2013–2014 president of the Association of the Wall and Ceiling Industry, Daley is president of Daley’s Drywall & Taping, Inc., San Jose, Calif.

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