Live Event Success: Interview with TEDx Events Organizer Emily Leach

Emily Leach is a visionary in using technology to expand business reputations, visibility, and innovation.

So when Emily agreed to do an interview with Sumer, we were thrilled! Check out her tips below for hosting live events and workshops, why small groups are effective, and the best ways to follow up after an event.

As a current TEDx organizer, you’ve had your fair share of challenges and successes when it comes to putting on live events. What is the number one tip you can offer readers who are looking to add workshops to their list of services?

Adding workshops to your business may be the best option available to attract loyal clients. It gives you the opportunity to display your expertise and the client can connect with you at a lower price point getting started.

My number one tip: do it right! Don’t skimp on the experience the attendees are going to have. Spend the time to envision the workshop from start to finish, with every detail you can think of. Document that vision and make it happen!

Remember, the success of a workshop is in the experience of the attendee before, during, AND after.

What are a few things most people overlook when planning a workshop?

Details. It sounds simple, but something as simple as printing workbooks out with a page or two of color and spiral binding over all black-and-white stapled together. A continental breakfast and snacks throughout the day costs very little but goes a long way in the experience.

The biggest thing people forget is ample breaks throughout the day. People are not designed to sit and listen to you talk for 3 hours. Every hour needs at least a 10-minute break to get up, grab a snack, talk and/or use the restroom. This also keeps people from getting up during your presentation times.

Let the audience know you will be taking breaks and when, if they know you will have less people moving about and getting antsy in their seats wondering.

What tip(s) do you have to offer to increase engagement during a workshop?

  • Break your attendees up in to small groups (usually 5 max) and create a purposeful activity.
  • Make sure they have to interact with everyone in the group and document what is going on. Example: I have a process I taught for keyword research where everyone in the group took five 4×6 note cards and wrote their name on each one. Then they gave one out to each person in the group, then they told the group what their business was about and the task of the group was to write down simple words that came to mind for them as you were talking. Then you got all the cards back. Everyone was engaged, active and walked away with a powerful tool.

After a workshop, what are a few creative ways to keep in touch and follow up?

I would have an accountability card students can use throughout the workshop. After each session, they would write down one thing they wanted to be held accountable for, and then I would connect with them on their own goals.

A post-event webinar can be extremely valuable, let the students ask questions after they’ve had time to process the workshop. Then answer those questions in a webinar. This gives them value and you an opportunity to show your expertise and possibly even create a product to upsell from the questionnaire.

For those interest in learning more, what are your suggested resources for creating successful workshops?

Of course you can always connect with me directly about your event, but I would highly recommend checking out a webinar interview I’ve been asked to do with Michelle Salater on August 20th. The entire webinar is about how you can use your expertise and create a live workshop.

I have not yet decided what my give-a-way will be for this event … but I always do something. When you RSVP, each attendee can ask any question they want, so for starters you will already get what you need to know.

About Emily Leach

Emily Leach a trained administrator in Information Systems, as well as skilled in both Online Marketing and Event Production, and Founder of the Event Production Academy. As a combined result of her expertise, skills, and experience, she is an advocate for business owners in their Online Marketing strategy development and proactive training. Even more, she is known as a leading-edge licensee, organizer, and speaker for TEDx events in Albuquerque, NM and Corpus Christi, TX.

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