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Guidelines for speaking at events

This guide was created with content from the GSA’s Office of Strategic Communications (OSC) FAS Speaker Guide.

Receiving invitations

Below is the process you’ll need to follow when receving an interview or speaking request, even if you’re not interested in participating.

Media interview requests

If you’re contacted by a newspaper, TV station, radio station, podcast, or blog, send the request directly to press@gsa.gov. It’s okay to respond to the sender (cc-ing press@gsa.gov) thanking them for the invite and letting them know that the GSA Press team will handle the request.

Other speaking requests

For all requests that are not interviews, forward the invitation to speakers@gsa.gov. This is just for the Outreach team’s visibility, and it’s not part of the approval process. Invitations that fall in this category include requests to speak at customer events such as an agency’s acquisition conference and/or industry request, conferences, college classes, or anything you’re doing in your official capacity as a GSA employee (where you will be identified as working for GSA).

Accepting invitations

The first step when you get an invitation to speak is to decide whether or not to accept the invitation. Talk with your supervisor and challenge yourself to come up with good reasons to speak rather than having no good reasons not to speak. It’s always okay to politely decline speaking invitations.

Ask yourself the following questions when considering an invitation:

If you are not familiar with the organization issuing the invitation or with the particular event at which you have been invited to speak, feel free to reach out to our OSC liaison Drew Jack.

Professional vs personal capacity

When receiving an invitation to speak, you need to decide if you want to do the event in your professional or personal capacity:

Professional capacity

Personal capacity

Getting approval when speaking in your professional capacity

If you and your supervisor decide this is a good oportunity for yourself and TTS, arrange a call with the event host and ask them the following questions. You’ll need this information for the approval process:

Once you have determined you have good reasons to speak and have decided to accept the invitation, you have to get approval to participate. If the invitation is for a media interview, work with GSA’s press office to coordinate. If it is for a public speaking engagement — with or without media — all requests to attend a conference, including for GSA-hosted conferences, must go through the speaker approval process.

Guidelines for speaking in your personal capacity

For the FAQ and other things to know check out the full guide.