Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Herman Otten, Founder of Public Speaking NYC, located in Brooklyn, NY, USA.

What's your business, and who are your customers?

I am a public speaking coach in New York City. I offer open classes, private coaching, and corporate sessions for everyone in New York City who wants to improve their public speaking skills. I work with people with a fear of speaking to people who are skilled and want to get even better: everyone is welcome!

Tell us about yourself

I graduated as an actor in the Netherlands at the Utrecht School of Performing Arts in 2008. After graduation, I worked as an actor in film, television, theater, and radio. I soon realized I got a lot of energy teaching other people how to present themselves in front of an audience. I started working as a coach in The Netherlands and dreamed of doing it one day in NYC. In 2020 this dream became a reality. My life goal has always been to help people as quickly and effectively as possible to overcome their public speaking anxiety. Since I started, I have helped over ten thousand people to improve their public speaking skills.

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

My biggest dream was to work as a public speaking coach in New York City. From the first time I visited, I loved the big city, the motivated people, and the vibrant atmosphere. In the 2.5 years, I've now worked in New York, I've had the opportunity to work with a lot of great people who I've seen grow and improve in my sessions. That makes me so proud.

What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?

Taking risks without having a safety net is part of being an entrepreneur. During COVID, fewer people applied for my services. In such a situation, you have to be creative, stay positive, and think of ways to keep your business healthy. I always wanted to write a book. So I took this opportunity to write a book for teams that I now sell on Amazon: 101 Team Building Exercises.

What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?

  1. It really helps if you have a clear vision of what you want to reach. This inner vision navigates you to your goals and makes sure you will accomplish them.
  2. Be patient when setting up your business. Like Anthony Robins once said: "People overestimate what they can do in a year and underestimate what they can do in ten years."
  3. Start a business in something you really love and feel passionate about. This way, you will stay motivated when you experience obstacles along the way.

Where can people find you and your business?


If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.

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