In ten years of teaching, I have learned many lessons. One of the most important insights I have gained is that students desperately need real-world examples to bring life to the theories and concepts presented by their professors and found in their textbooks. To paraphrase the boxer Mike Tyson, theories are great until you get punched in the face by a real-world crisis.

So, what does this have to do with you? As members of the Page Society and Page Up, you have an incredible opportunity to bring your rich and diverse professional experience to the classroom. You will find, as I have, that students have an indelible thirst to understand how the concepts they have been taught actually work. They want to hear how you handled the abrupt resignation of your CEO; how you responded when a customer complaint went viral and resulted in thousands of angry tweets from stakeholders; how you remained calm, patient and good-humored when your stock price fell 20 percent in a day based on an unexpected recall of your biggest selling product.

They also are eager to hear how you helped build an outstanding reputation for your organization through a consistent commitment to enlightened decision-making. These students want to join organizations in which they can believe, and they would like to know how you made your own career choices and broadened your experience.

To facilitate your ability to step into the classroom and help change lives, the Page Society has launched a new Speakers Network that will help strengthen the bridge between the classroom and the workplace. You can access the Network through this link:

Through the Speakers Network, those in the practice will be able to register as a potential classroom speaker, and those who teach will be able to connect with these registered speakers to schedule them for a classroom visit. To date, dozens of Page Society members have already registered to speak and more are signing up each week. The demand is virtually limitless, since there are literally hundreds of colleges and universities that offer communication and business courses that are ideal platforms for Page Society and Page Up members to share their wisdom with the next generation.

A few years ago, I wrote a publication called “The Professional’s Guide to Guest Lecturing” that may be a useful resource as you prepare for your classroom visit. A PDF version of it can be downloaded at this site:

As I said in that publication, “the real payoff for investing the time and energy it takes to serve as a guest lecturer…is the knowledge that in a very direct way you are helping change lives. These changes may be small and incremental, but they make a difference in the lives of the young men and women who will lead our profession in the future.”

To those in the practice, I encourage you to register for the Speakers Network and become involved as a guest lecturer. To those who teach, I encourage you to take advantage of this amazing opportunity and invite one of the volunteer speakers into your classrooms. While all of you will gain from the experience, the ultimate beneficiaries will be the students, who will receive valuable lessons that will last a lifetime.