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Conferences That Work

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A story about learning from experience, not lectures…
Here's a story I told at the opening of the 2015 PCMA Education Conference: The EduCon organizers asked me to say a little about the conference format, and I thought about when I was a teenager, and loved to go to parties and dance.
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Learning is not a monolithic process. When we talk about learning at meetings, being specific about the categories of desired learning can enlighten.
When asked, just about everyone mentions learning as a key reason for conference attendance. So, given the clear importance of learning at events, it’s surprising that we lump distinctly different activities into the single word learning.
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Here's a remarkable single question that unexpectedly categorizes the many different kinds of formal events in our lives.
A surprisingly powerful way of thinking about events emerges from answering the question: Whom is your event for?
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 …The intelligence of the individuals didn’t matter. #eventprofs #assnchat  
The content didn’t matter.
It was the pattern of how they shared with each other…
The research findings shared in this video by MIT Professor Sandy Pentland have been the focus of my meetings design work for over twenty years.
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I've done this, learn from my mistake!
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Sometimes the answer is obvious—once you see it…
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An interview by Kelsey Bjelland about my first book Conferences That Work: Creating Events That People Love
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Have them in circles
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"Perfect lets you stall, ask more questions, do more reviews, dumb it down, safe it up and generally avoid doing anything that might fail (or anything important)."
Right after the 2015 PCMA Education Conference Tuesday breakfast, I facilitated an experiment that allowed 675 meeting planners to choose sessions they would like to hold.
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There are fascinating parallels in the ways that journalism and events are evolving. Listen to the first minute of this interview of journalism maverick +Jeff Jarvis by +David Weinberger …
“What the internet changes is our relationship with the public we serve…What is the proper relationship for journalists to the public? We tend to think it's manufacturing a product called content you should honor and buy…That's a legacy of mass media; treating everybody the same because we had ...
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The cultural and technology reasons why broadcast lecturing still dominates our conferences today.
The two historic reasons why today s meetings are such a mess.
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 Let's stop calling everyone who shares content at a conference a "speaker".
Call me a presenter or a facilitator. And, if you claim your conference is really about learning and connecting, consider employing a lot fewer speakers at your events.
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I’m honored to be included as one of MeetingsNet’s eleven most influential online personalities in meetings and travel

http://www.conferencesthatwork.com/index.php/social-media-2/2014/02/best-picture-of-me-in-a-suit-ever/
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Have them in circles
71 people
Bill Campbell's profile photo
ShowGizmo's profile photo
George Mathew's profile photo
ATP Digital Media's profile photo
Aries Marquee Hire Liverpool's profile photo
Custom Events's profile photo
Building Alliances's profile photo
Sundial Group's profile photo
Square Meal Venues & Events's profile photo
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Conference design and facilitation. Relevant, memorable conferences—every time
Introduction

Conferences That Work are conferences that support and encourage meaningful, mutually beneficial connections between people with common interests.

Conferences That Work are innovative, highly interactive, attendee-driven events that leverage the expertise and experience in the room to create just the conference that participants want.

The Conferences That Work event format has been developed for over twenty years by Adrian Segar, who is available for consultation on your conference design, and presenting on participant-driven and participation-rich events.

Adrian's first book Conferences That Work: Creating Events That People Love condenses 30 years experience designing, organizing, and facilitating conferences into an information-packed step-by-step guide to a proven design for creating productive conferences that people love.

His latest book The Power of Participation: Creating Conferences That Deliver Learning, Connection, Engagement, and Action provides a compendium of techniques for maximizing learning, connection, engagement, and action in conference sessions.