Conferences that Work

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Reasons to leave a job

Conferences that Work

My mentor Jerry Weinberg , consultant extraordinaire, has written an excellent list of reasons to leave a job. In my career, I have left jobs when: The job I was hired to do was finished. The job I was hired to do could not be finished. The job I was hired to do would be finished just fine without me. I was not able to do the job I was hired to do. Sometimes you have no choice but to leave a job.

2017 75

Virtual Meetings Lower Costs … and Interaction

Conferences that Work

“Intel’s annual meeting was entirely virtual. There was no in-person gathering site, the questions were submitted in advance, and management and the board made all of their presentations online.” ” — Steven Davidoff Solomon , New York Times,  Online Shareholders’ Meetings Lower Costs, but Also Interaction. There are, however, some downsides. And then everyone goes away.

Why meetings are more important than you think

Conferences that Work

As 2017 begins, take a moment to think about meetings in a wider context. OK, a very wide context. “Who am I?” ” We’ve all wondered about some form of this question. ” — Dr Daniel Siegel , “ Why Compassion is Necessary for Humanity “ Here’s the two-minute conclusion of Dan’s video: [link]. Meetings. They’re more important than you think.

2017 78

Event design is not just visuals and logistics

Conferences that Work

I love David Adler ‘s creativity, support, drive, ingenuity, and enthusiasm. The first time I met him—at the premier EventCamp in 2010 —he immediately purchased my just-published book, sight unseen. The The following year, David was kind enough to honor me in his flagship publication BizBash as one of the most innovative event professionals. that we don’t question their continued use.

A Practical Guide to Measuring Event Success

Save $100 on Adrian Segar’s first 1½ day participation techniques workshop!

Conferences that Work

I’m excited! For over 25 years, I’ve been designing and facilitating Conferences That Work : successful, innovative, highly interactive, participant-driven events that leverage attendees’ expertise and experience to create just the conference that participants want and need. Earn CIC education credits. This will be the only North American workshop offered in 2016. Syllabus. Roundtable.

Help Wanted—Venues for my participation techniques workshops!

Conferences that Work

The success of  my last request for workshop help  has inspired me to ask for more. Traditional meeting venues aren’t always the best fit for participant-driven events, and I’m looking for meeting spaces for my upcoming 1½ day participation techniques workshops that concentrate on inexpensive  simplicity and flexibility rather than glitz and expensive high-end features. Nice to have.

Guaranteeing audience engagement at your events

Conferences that Work

Most people won’t ask questions at meetings. So how can you get authentic audience engagement at your events? In a thoughtful article “ Audience Engagement – at the Heart of Meetings “, Pádraic Gilligan writes: “…We all want audience engagement so why doesn’t it take place?…While different workshop. Conclusion. Read the full article at Conferences That Work. Near Atlanta?

What’s the best learning model for conference sessions?

Conferences that Work

We don’t usually think about the learning models we employ during conference sessions, and I believe our events would be better if we did. Conventional conferences assume a ready supply of experts to whom we listen while they cover  the learning that has been advertised at their sessions. “In surface learning, the session reflects the knowledge and skills of the speaker. It is one.

2007 57

Gartner Magic Quadrant for Security Information and Event Management (SIEM)

The best way I know to radically improve your conferences

Conferences that Work

This 3-minute video explains why registering for one of my upcoming participation techniques workshops could be the best career decision you’ll make this year. You’ll save $100 when you sign up for my Chicago workshop by September 9th , earn 16.00 CE hours, and — most important — learn how to significantly increase attendee satisfaction at your events. Thanks!

Wisdom from International Facilitation Week!

Conferences that Work

Gosh, how could I have overlooked  International Facilitation Week ? Dontcha know, there’s a minute, hour, day, week, month, or year for everything these days.) Luckily it’s not too late to share the latest crop of fine facilitation wisdom from the mysterious S**t FacilitatorsSay  (profile: “I facilitate groups. ” ). Surely we facilitators can help!

2015 43

I stop talking for five days. You won’t believe what happens next.

Conferences that Work

I do something I’ve never done before. In August, I stopped talking for five days. flew to New Mexico and drove four hours to Vallecitos , a remote ranch in the heart of the Carson National Forest. For five days, forty of us lived in silence, meditating in the Vipassana tradition. No talking, no reading, no writing, no phone, no internet. Before this experience, I had never been silent for even one day of my life. What happened next? totally unexpected outcome was that I fundamentally changed how I eat. It turned out to be a lot less than I’ve been eating most of my life.

Facilitation, rapt attention, and love

Conferences that Work

Why am I drawn to facilitation? I’ve often heard an uneasy inner voice that wonders if it’s about a desire or need for control and/or power. And yet I know through experience that when I am facilitating well, I have influence but no real control or power. The love is conveyed not so much in the content as in the form: the rapt attention of someone who cares enough to interrogate you.

Six Events At The Facilitator Olympics

Conferences that Work

Did you know that facilitators have their own Olympics too? Here are six facilitator sports you may not be aware of…. Get the entire group to return on time from break. facilitatorolympics. — S**t FacilitatorsSay (@ShitFacilitator) May 7, 2016. Rearrange 10 tables and 60 chairs from boardroom style to horseshoe b4 participants arrive. Andy Kaye (@thepitofclay) May 8, 2016. Make it to the 3rd fl.

2014 44

Effortlessly Interact with an Entire Audience from Any Location

The two must-do steps to hire the best professional help

Conferences that Work

When you need professional help, how do you select the best  professionals? Countless experts — such as accountants, plumbers, doctors, lawyers, and meeting planners — will take your money in exchange for advice or services. It isn’t easy. Why it’s hard to choose the right help. There’s a simple reason why it’s tricky to pick great professionals. Don’t despair! doctor?

Asking for help

Conferences that Work

Sometimes, the best thing we can do is to ask for help. I had been fretting for several months on how to move ahead on convening and facilitating more of the participation technique workshops that are dear to my heart. What would the interest be? How would I market them? Which countries and venues should I consider? The exploratory work involved was daunting. needed to ask for help. How about you?

Ask Me Anything About Conference Panels—Annotated Video

Conferences that Work

I guarantee you will learn many new great ideas about conference panels from this Blab of my Thursday chat with the wonderful Kristin Arnold. I’ve annotated it so you can jump to the good bits. But it’s pretty much all good bits, so you may find yourself watching the whole thing. Scroll down the whole list; there are many advice gems , excellent stories and parables , folks show up at our homes , Kristin sings , etc.!) One of Kristin’s favorite tools: The Newlywed Game. “What word pops into your mind when you think of [panel topic]?” Do you want to.

To build connection and engagement at events — give up control!

Conferences that Work

How can we build connection and engagement with people with whom we work? My wise consultant friend Naomi Karten  tells a short story  about a client’s unexpected reaction. Frank had a bad experience with an earlier information technology project, so Naomi’s team gave him three possible approaches to a major system design and a list of the pluses and minuses of each.

2011 28

Replace “brain training” hype with something that works

Conferences that Work

Driving home from the post office today, I finally heard one too many promotions for Lumosity brain training on my local NPR station.  Lumosity , in case you somehow haven’t heard, is a subscription to online games that claim to improve memory, attention, cognitive flexibility, speed of processing, problem solving, and, for all I know, world peace too. Which leads to a simple suggestion.

U.S. and Europe Power of Participation Workshops registration opens!

Conferences that Work

Whether you’re in the U.S. or Europe, I’ve got a POPWORKS workshop for you! significantly increase  owner and attendee satisfaction  and participation at your sessions and events. February 2-3, 2017: RAI Amsterdam , The Netherlands  1½-day workshop, registration now open  —  €895. The Watch this short video to learn more about POPWORKS. Learn more about Adrian and his books. Syllabus.

Should presenter contracts include a no brown M&Ms rider?

Conferences that Work

Van Halen ‘s 1982 World Tour performance contract contained a provision calling for them to be provided backstage with a bowl of M&Ms from which all the brown candies had been removed. ” — Brown Out , snopes.com. Apparently, David Lee Roth would also trash the band’s dressing room to drive home the point. ” I can’t post materials on the walls. It is one.

Who owns your event?

Conferences that Work

Who owns  an event? The The usual answer to this question is “the event’s sponsors”, i.e. the people and organizations that decide to hold the event and contribute the resources needed for the event to occur. Sponsors typically define the context, format, scope, and desired outcomes of an event, so they are clearly key candidates to be considered as owners.

2011 39

Use pair share to quickly improve your conference sessions

Conferences that Work

In less than three minutes, you can improve almost any conference session with  pair share. The technique is simple: after pairing up participants and providing a short period for individual thinking about an appropriate topic, each pair member takes a minute in turn to share their thoughts with their partner. More details can be found in Chapter 38 of The Power of Participation.). Pair share is not the same as conversation, because pair share gives each person an exclusive minute of  active  sharing and a minute of pure listening. Modeling and supporting social learning during the session.

2011 33

Feedback Frames—a low-tech tool for anonymous voting

Conferences that Work

Jason Diceman  is developing a novel tool for anonymous voting —  Feedback Frames. Unlike high-tech audience response systems, Feedback Frames are refreshingly low-tech (no computers, clickers, smartphones, power, or technical support required). Jason created an even lower-tech (free!) Visit  Feedback Frames  to learn more. Read the full article at Conferences That Work. No related posts.

2004 37

Five reasons NOT to use a Conferences That Work meeting design

Conferences that Work

I’ve been promoting the Conferences That Work meeting format for so long, that some people assume I think it’s the right choice for every meeting. Well, it’s not. Here are (drum roll!) two meeting types and three situations when you should NOT use a  Conferences That Work  design:  — Most corporate events. Many corporate events have a tight focus. It’s worth it. If

Japan 31

How to get better at doing anything

Conferences that Work

A lost tourist asks a native New Yorker “How do you get to Carnegie Hall?” to which the local replies “Practice, practice, practice!”. Good advice. But if we want to get better at doing something,  what should we practice? The obvious answer is that we should practice improving what we are doing well, so we get even better at it. My mentor Jerry Weinberg has a different suggestion.

An introduction to participatory voting—Part 3: Public, semi-anonymous, and anonymous voting

Conferences that Work

In the first two parts of this series on participatory voting at events, I  introduced the concept  and  compared low-tech and high-tech approaches. Now, let’s explore an issue that should (but often doesn’t) determine the specific voting methods we choose:  knowledge about how other participants have voted. ” But how often is this necessary? Sources for additional information.

2011 34

Friends don’t let friends give away their content

Conferences that Work

Friends don’t let friends give away their original content to third-party platforms. I’ve been saying this for years, but do people listen? No No they don’t. Let me be clear, by all means share your content for free on any of the gazillion social media platforms available. And if you can get paid appropriately for creating content for others, good for you. Long gone. Who knows?

2009 21

Facilitating connection

Conferences that Work

Last Saturday, the ashes of my wife’s beloved Tai Chi teacher were interred in our tiny town cemetery. People came from all over the world to celebrate her life, but some could not make the journey. I was asked if I could help distant friends and students in the United States, New Zealand, and Germany to connect in some way with the ceremony. Read the full article at Conferences That Work.

Reduce Chinese-style self-censorship at your meetings

Conferences that Work

The Chinese government runs  a massive online censorship program. Why Why mention this on an event design blog? Well, the most effective aspect of China’s online censorship regime illustrates  what happens when you don’t incorporate covenants into your meetings. Tech In Asia explains: “Imagine being near a steep cliff. to say and do. Photo attribution: Flickr user zedzap.

2011 28

Dear Adrian — How does group size impact process design?

Conferences that Work

Another issue of an occasional series— Dear Adrian —in which I answer questions about event design, elementary particle physics , solar hot water systems, facilitation, and anything else I might conceivably know something about. If you have a question you’d like me to answer, please contact me  (don’t worry, I won’t publish anything without your permission). look forward to hearing from you.

2011 21

Lessons from Anguilla: What meeting designers can learn from religious services

Conferences that Work

On my daily vacation walk to Island Harbour, I hear singing. As I turn the corner onto Rose Hill Road, the sound swells. It’s 7:30 am, but the morning service at St. Andrew’s Anglican Church is in full swing and, as I pass, a familiar hymn from my youth washes over me, sung by a hundred enthusiastic voices. So what can we learn from religious meeting design? I Keep ’em moving!

2014 11

Lessons From Improv: Make Sure Your Meeting Messages Are Received

Conferences that Work

Want to improve the learning at your meetings? Here’s what I learned from You. No, not you —  “ You “! “You” “ You “ is a delightful improv game I played at the Mindful Play, Playful Mind retreat in Mere Point, Maine. Once the players have got that pattern down … well, let’s run both patterns simultaneously! It’s challenging — and a lot  of fun!

2015 21

Panels as if the audience mattered

Conferences that Work

I’m in San Antonio, Texas, having just run two 90-minute “panels” at a national association leadership conference. I say “panels” because at both sessions, the three “panelists” presented for less than five minutes. There’s no one “best” way to do this of course, but here’s the format I used for these two particular sessions.

When event covenants collide—a story

Conferences that Work

I was facilitating a one-day workshop for 24 college presidents. At the start, we agreed to follow six covenants , including the freedom to ask questions at any time , and a commitment to stay on schedule. Our program was tight and college presidents are not known for their brevity, and I was feeling somewhat apprehensive about the group’s ability to honor the latter covenant.

The dark side of stories at events

Conferences that Work

Hans Bleiker tells a story about a group of scientists who spent several years carefully researching how to maintain the health of a deer herd, and determined that some minor changes in state hunting regulations would be very effective. Stories have great power to change our minds. Unfortunately, such power can also be used for evil. Stories can be used to inflict great damage. Examples abound.

When consensus is dangerous

Conferences that Work

Imagine a group of people who need to make a decision about something. As the size of the group increases, the chance that everyone will be happy with what is decided falls exponentially. Unless there’s unanimous agreement, the group will use — either explicitly or tacitly — some kind of rule that determines whether a specific decision is acceptable. Any objections? OK, it’s decided.”].

2011 11

The Next Best Thing

Conferences that Work

“Best” is context-specific ,  a matter of opinion , and transitory. When we use “best” dishonestly, we ignore one or more of these realities. We appeal to status , implying that our “best” thing is absolutely best, transcending environment, viewpoint, and the passage of time. “Believe us, buy this, and Bingo! Photo attribution Flickr user thomashawk.