How do you start speaking at conferences?

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This year my goal is to at least give a lightning talk or longer at software engineering confrence of some sort. I am sure some of you out there have similar goals so wanted to start a disscussion to help all of us! If you are already giving talks how did you get started? What are some good conferences to try? Would trying local meetups be a good idea?

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The two things I'd recommend are building up some 1) repertoire and 2) networking. The latter being the hardest for a lot of engineers.
1) Start writing thought out blogs. These can be technical pieces, commentary, editorial, or opinion pieces. Promote the articles on your social media. Engage in discussions in various communities. As you build up a following you will start to get noticed and invited to conferences. You can also contribute to whitepapers and reviews for conferences or within your company.
2) Attend meetups and other conferences. Even if you don't speak, just consistently show up and make friends. Engage in discussions.
Also, take a look at Toastmasters. These aren't necessarily tech groups, but the point is that it's a group of people networking and doing quick talks on various topics to gain comfort and experience.

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Michael Larson profile image
Just a lowly software engineer that loves sharing what I know with others!

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