Meeting Planner - Keynote Speakers

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Speaker on PlatformSpeakers Don't Always Have to be Famous
This article first appeared in Insurance Meetings Management Magazine
by Diane Goodman, CMP, President and Founder, Goodman Speakers Bureau
(revised for 2013)

Years ago, an industry trend landed in my lap. This may be a bit of an exaggeration, but looking back, it was one of the first times I clearly saw the evolution of a need and desire for insurance and financial businesses to hire "expert speakers" -- industry experts and insiders -- in addition to professional speakers to address their corporate meetings.

How did this trend come to me and my lap? I had noticed that more of the clients at my speakers bureau were becoming overwhelmed by the fast-paced changes in the insurance and financial industries. The status quo - that is, insurance companies selling insurance and financial companies selling investments -- was changing. Both arenas were evolving and crossing over into each other as a result of changes in legislation and mergers and acquisitions. Competitors were now becoming partners. New products and services were entering the marketplace at a rapid clip. And consumer demands were changing to reflect new consumer attitudes, the aging population, and a growth in investor savvy.

Meeting planners were being asked by their internal executives and clients to find more appropriate outside speakers who could address these major shifts and emerging issues in the insurance and financial industries. They needed speakers to be able to educate and inform executives, agents and other professionals about all these new changes that affect their business. One day in the midst of all this, I met with a client -- a meeting planner at a major insurance company -- who asked me to locate speakers who could speak directly and purposefully to her executives about specific industry trends. She did not want a list of traditional professional speakers who could simply tailor their motivational or managerial speeches to vaguely reflect tile insurance field. Instead, she wanted experts in insurance and finance who were on the "front lines" of the industry, knowledgeable of the countless changes, and who were willing and able to speak at internal company meetings.

Mission impossible? Initially, I thought it was. She was asking for something very new, and was creating a lot of up front work for me to tackle. I gave this assignment great thought and after mulling over her request, I realized my client had just verbalized a major shift I had been sensing in the needs of meeting planners. She had helped me uncover a new niche for my speakers bureau - servicing the industry insiders who wanted to hear from other industry insiders.

Moreover, corporate meeting planners also were also becoming mired in all the massive industry changes as well, and were expected to be as informed as their internal executives, if not more so. They were being asked to design meeting agendas to meet extensive objectives, with little guidance from inside. So I immediately saw another business opportunity: assisting planners to expand meeting agendas to include expert speakers to address industry specific issues. These speakers would complement the higher-profile professional speakers and celebrities who focus keynote speeches on broader motivational or business topics.

Expert speakers are industry insiders who are knowledgeable about a variety of topics, including health care, social security, deregulation, changes in legislation, and marketplace trends such as the explosion of new financial products meant to serve an aging population. Their expertise allows them to help others in the field make sense of the large blur that used to clearly defined traditional market segments -- insurance, banking, investing, health care, and financial planning.

Expert speakers are not the same as professional speakers. Not by a long shot. Professional speakers invest a lot of time and money marketing themselves, and building a career entirely around their public speaking talents. They are easy to locate and evaluate to determine if they are appropriate for any given speaking engagement.

Most professional speakers can fill the role of al traditional keynote speaker, or they can tailor a speech to be more meaningful to smaller, specific groups. They can fly across the country, practically at a moment's notice, to take part in meetings, seminars, retreats or other occasions. Professional public speaking is what they do.

Expert speakers, on the other hand, have "day jobs." They work within the industry, are not always easy to locate and do not make public speaking their ultimate priority. It takes research and diligence to uncover expert speakers who can communicate clearly and who can accommodate a specific schedule for meeting planners.

The benefits of using industry experts in addition to professional speakers, however, are numerous. They possess a vast industry knowledge base that can be applied directly to fit a meeting's agenda, and they know the industry "language" and can communicate meaningfully to executives on all levels. Based on their particular expertise, they can address various specific areas of importance to meeting attendees, providing substance to their presentations. In addition, many expert speakers are certified to offer continuing education credits to industry professionals. Since ongoing education is a growing requisite for people at all levels within the
insurance and financial arenas, this is an attractive way to maximize time spent in corporate meetings. And their fees are not necessarily as steep as many professional speakers.

Expert speakers can be found a number of ways. They often speak at industry conferences such as the Life Agency Management Program (LAMP), sponsored by GAMA International; the Million Dollar Round Table (MDRT), which is a conference as well as an association of life insurance-based financial services sales professionals; and programs hosted by the International Association of Financial Planning. If meeting planners are given the opportunity to attend these conferences, they can meet and screen potential expert speakers for future use.

Also, experts can be found through personal contacts or industry referrals. Meeting planners can ask for expert speaker referrals from consultants their companies may already be using. These consultants may be able to recommend speakers, or they may want to take on the role of expert speaker themselves.

The question remains: Are they any good? Planners need to know that the speaker they hire can perform. Again, this is easy to determine with professional speakers who have promotional videos, books, articles, and other marketing materials. A speakers bureau also can provide testimonials of a professional speaker's performance. Can a bureau do the same with expert speakers? It should. It is indeed more work to invest time to locate potential expert speakers, check references, hear them speak, and ascertain their credentials and areas of expertise. But by adding them to their rosters of professional speakers, bureaus can pursue a full-service approach to their business. In addition to booking the celebrity speaker for a keynote presentation, bureaus can help planners make the overall meeting agenda more relevant, build internal continuing education programs, and improve the role of corporate meetings.

I am confident this "brave new world" of expert speakers provides one refreshing solution for meeting planners to keep on top of the frustrating tidal wave of change within the insurance and financial industries.

Contact Diane Goodman, The Goodman Speakers Bureau, 800.875.2893 or Diane@GoodmanSpeakersBureau.com

Meeting Planner

 

Laptop screamAVOID GETTING WEBBED
Determining When 'Low-Tech' Is Best!
Originally published by MEETINGSNET Magazine June 2012
By Diane Goodman, CMP & President, Goodman Speakers Bureau

Speakers bureaus, like much of the corporate world, have made the leap to the Internet, with robust websites that tout some of today's hottest technology. These sites often are enticing, offering video clips of various speakers along with comprehensive forms that help meeting planners narrow their search by entering price, topic, and other variables. Of course, searches on websites can be conducted any time of the day, any day of the week and planners can get more information about speakers with one or two clicks without having to wait for information to arrive via email. So what's the downside?

A bureau’s website alone cannot provide quality service, objective consultation, or in-depth knowledge of each speaker. It cannot give you tailored answers to your specific questions regarding speakers. And it cannot create a proven, trusting partnership with planners, something that is a vital component of any important event. “The value of a speakers bureau has always been building relationships with speakers and with clients, and then leveraging those relationships to match needs,” said Edwin L. Griffin, Jr. CAE, president and CEO of Meeting Professionals International, speaking at a recent MPI chapter meeting in Hartford, CT. "Even with today’s advanced technology, speakers and planners are going to have a need for meaningful service from professional bureaus.”

The service provided by a good speakers bureau should begin long before any names of speakers are even considered. The pre-planning consultation is key for a bureau to truly understand the objectives, agenda, and scope of each meeting or conference. From there, the bureau also needs to garner a better understanding of the audience and the particular likes and dislikes of the executives involved in the meeting.

For planners who have other roles and responsibilities within an organization, this is where a speakers bureau can add real value, saving the planner hours of staring at a flickering screen trying to match speaker “qualities” with their budgets, and then still not having all the answers. Instead, a bureau will steer the planner toward speaker recommendations that are on-target for the overall goals of the meeting – important factors beyond budget and scheduling availability. Additionally, the preplanning process clarifies expectations among executives and other internal audiences, and frustration for everyone during the rest of the preparation process. Once the bureau completes the pre-planning phase with the client, it is ready to conduct speaker research and make qualified recommendations. The speakers bureau will use its expertise in determining the style, capability, tone, and attitude of today’s professional speakers to find the right fit for the client’s needs.

In addition to having intimate knowledge of speakers’ subject matter, bureaus should be able to recommend other “out-of-the-box” ways to maximize or tailor the role of speakers. For instance, many speakers also are exceptional MC’s and may be willing to take on that additional role during a meeting or event. Or a motivational speaker may be willing to lead a group exercise during a different part of the meeting. These types of enhancements may not be something a planner would initially consider, but they may be the very things that make a good event even more memorable.

A meeting planner should always take the integrity of the bureau into consideration before using its services. It is very easy to recommend popular speakers as appropriate for any event, since the name of the speaker alone may impress the planner and attendees, but this may not best serve the true needs and objectives of the meeting. Additionally, some bureaus may be tempted to hold back an honest opinion of a speaker’s capability if they are focused only on the size of the speaker’s fee. This is where integrity is key.

You can determine the quality of a speakers bureau by its willingness to invest time upfront to understand your issues, concerns, and goals with each meeting. An ethical bureau is more interested in building long-term relationships for ongoing future business, with both the speakers and the planners. Speakers want to trust the bureau they work with that it will find appropriate opportunities for them. And the planners want to trust that the bureau will provide relevant speakers who really connect with the audience. This type of trust cannot be built through an impersonal scan of a website. “The Internet sometimes conjures a ‘bargain hunting’ mentality among online shoppers.” Griffin said. “While this may be advantageous for families trying to plan vacations, it really isn’t a good approach for professionals trying to coordinate a high-quality sales meeting. Planners traditionally have relied on the expertise of a wide variety of vendors, from AV specialists to resort representatives to speakers bureaus. The dawn of the Internet age shouldn’t affect the value of those relationships.”

And, speakers’ fees typically do not change, regardless of how they are booked through a bureau or any other means. So, in the case of speakers, the Internet does not offer any pricing advantage. In the long run, time and money will be saved when properly utilizing a professional speakers bureau. Since bureaus do the legwork to develop targeted lists of speakers, planners don’t need to spend time considering inappropriate speakers. The bureau provides reasons why their recommendations are good choices, and it provides for the planner relevant materials about each speaker. It is important to know that the information a speakers bureau can provide may not be available on the Internet. On a website, you’re at the mercy of what the Webmaster deems “worthy” of actually being posted. At the same time, the right information may be there, but the planner may need to invest a lot of time trying to locate it.

Most speakers bureaus offer websites that essentially assume the pre-planning work is complete and the client knows exactly what he or she needs in a speaker. However, there are no checks and balances on these sites to determine if this is the case. A planner, with the help of a bureau, should focus on the pre-planning process before looking at the specifics of any speaker. Once that is determined, the Internet can be a good place to conduct auxiliary research.

Contact: Diane Goodman, The Goodman Speakers Bureau 800.875.2893 or Diane@GoodmanSpeakersBureau.com

Meeting Planner

Welcome to our debut video of our vlog series on Successful Meeting Tips, Advice and Insights with President and Founder of The Goodman Speakers Bureau, Diane Goodman, CMP. Diane has more than 30+ years in the meeting business and is a founding member of the IASB. This series will ask a single question and viewers receive Diane's candid response. A treasure trove of industry information, Diane can advise and speak at the highest level of meeting planning, specifically with respect to hiring the right professional speaker for your event.

Today we kick off with the question, "What advice would you give a new meeting planner who has just been assigned the task of hiring a professional speaker?"

Download your free copy of the SURVIVE THE SEARCH workbook to guide you through the speaker selection process.

Have a question for Diane Goodman, CMP?  To submit your question, contact Diane at 800-875-2893 or Diane@goodmanspeakersbureau.com.   Diane and her team go beyond delivering speaker recommendations.  As Certified Meeting Professionals, they can offer guidance throughout the meeting planning process, assisting clients with overall meeting success.

 

Resource Meeting Planner

Welcome to our second installment of our vlog series on Successful Meeting Tips, Advice and Insights with President and Founder of The Goodman Speakers Bureau, Diane Goodman, CMP. Diane has more than 30+ years in the meeting business and is a founding member of the IASB. The series asks a single question and viewers receive Diane’s candid response. Diane advises at the highest level of meeting planning, specifically with respect to hiring the right professional speaker for your event.

Today our question is: In what ways can meeting planners maximize their speaker budgets?

How does Diane help meeting planners get the most from their budget? Click for full presentation (1:26min).
How does Diane help meeting planners get the most from their budget? Click for full presentation (1:26min).

Have a question for Diane Goodman, CMP?  To submit your question, contact Diane at 800-875-2893 or Diane@goodmanspeakersbureau.com. Diane and her team go beyond delivering speaker recommendations. As Certified Meeting Professionals, they can offer guidance throughout the meeting planning process, assisting clients with overall meeting success.

Resource Meeting Planner

Welcome to our third installment of our vlog series on Successful Meeting Tips, Advice and Insights with President and Founder of The Goodman Speakers Bureau, Diane Goodman, CMP. Diane has more than 30+ years in the meeting business and is a founding member of the IASB. The series asks a single question and viewers receive Diane’s candid response. Diane advises at the highest level of meeting planning, specifically with respect to hiring the right professional speaker for your event.

Today our question is: What are some of the trends you are seeing in the speaker industry today?

Have a question for Diane Goodman, CMP? To submit your question, contact Diane at 800-875-2893 or Diane@goodmanspeakersbureau.com. Diane and her team go beyond delivering speaker recommendations. As Certified Meeting Professionals, they can offer guidance throughout the meeting planning process, assisting clients with overall meeting success.

Resource Meeting Planner

gears-working-togetherHow Does a Speakers Bureau Work?

If you have never worked with a speakers bureau, you may wonder how to approach a bureau. Speakers bureaus exist to assist clients through every step of the speaker booking process, from initial proposal to contact, to the podium. We work on the clients' behalf (that's you!) and the goal is to exceed the client's expectation. We negotiate, facilitate, and communicate on your behalf, saving you time and providing you support. Because we work with so many speakers, we know who can deliver what--we can give you insights to which speakers will go the extra mile for a client, and which speakers aren't so easy to work with.  Because of this insight, working with us can ensure you a successful event.  Here are some commonly asked questions about how a speakers bureau works:

What does a speakers bureau charge?
There is no cost to you for using our services. Our fee is paid by the speaker, through their honorarium. The time we spend personally with you, the materials and resources we employ, and the effort we expend to meet your needs are free of charge. If you choose not to book a speaker, there is still no charge to you.

What is the average cost of hiring a professional keynote speakers?
Hiring a professional speaker will vary based on experience, skill, reputation and notoriety. Additional expenses are separate from the fee. Expenses, such as travel, hotel accommodations, meals, and any out of pocket expenses are usually considered additional to the speaker's fee.

Do I have to arrange travel and hotel accommodations for the professional speaker?
Goodman Speakers Bureau will work with you and the speaker directly to ensure that the right accommodations are found to fit the speaker's needs and to fit within your budget.

There are so many good speakers, how do I choose the one "right" for my event?
There are literally thousands of speakers in the marketplace today, and selecting the right one is difficult.  We help you choose by first getting a basic understanding of your organization and its needs, your budget, and the theme and message you need communicated to your attendees.  Then we select a group of speakers for you to review based on these factors, with accompanying video, biography, head shot, and speech topics they have specific expertise in. One you select a speaker from our proposal, we follow up by spending the following months with you, personally customizing your meeting down to the finest details.

What if I want a speaker and I don't see him or her featured on your website?
Don't worry!  Goodman Speakers Bureau works with many speakers, not just ones listed on our website. If you already know of a speaker you may be interested in, we will get you all of the resources necessary to facilitate your decision and getting you matched up with your speaker.

Do longer presentations cost more?
Generally, yes. Since each speaker sets their own fee, fees vary from speaker to speaker. Some have a flat cost, others will have a 1-hour (keynote), half day, and full day cost.

What kind of budget do I need?  What if I have a limited budget?
Spending a lot of money does not always mean you will get the best speaker for your event. We have relationships with a variety of speakers from which to find you a speaker that best fits your needs, at a price you can afford. Keynote speaker fees generally start at $5000 and up.

Can I speak directly with the speaker before I make a decision?
Most all of our speakers are available before you have made a selection and after you have made your final decision. Since we insist on a personal and customized approach to meeting planning, we will facilitate the best communication between you and your speaker possible. Whatever it takes to make you comfortable and content that your decision is the best, Goodman Speakers Bureau will be there at every step.

Can we make audio or video recordings of the speaker and his and her content at the event?
Speakers vary in regard to the protection of their intellectual property. Your Goodman Speakers Bureau representative will be happy to advise you on a speaker's attitudes about recording.

If you have any questions, give us a call!

We're here to answer your questions and it costs nothing to talk with us.

800-875-2893

Since 1979 Goodman Speakers Bureau has taken pride in providing our clients with customized solutions to their professional speaker needs. As the customized service specialists, we believe that Internet searches are the last place anyone should look for a professional speaker. Instead, we believe the first place to begin your search by working one-on-one with us. When you call the Goodman Speakers Bureau you will begin a partnership, which will produce the best product for your organization and event and save you time.

Resource Meeting Planner

Speaker on PlatformYou need a good speaker, no--a great speaker for your company's next conference. Someone who can tie the theme together, deliver valuable content to attendees, and leave everyone with a solid plan.  Where do you turn?

Managing a proposal process and sifting through direct solicitations can be time sinks for organizations. We see an opportunity for speaker bureaus to be strong partners" - Jeff Cobb, Jeff Hurt, Dave Lutz, Sarah Michel, and Celisa Steele - Tagoras and Velvet Chainsaw Consulting

Your first instinct may be to search the Internet.  A quick Google search using the terms "Great Keynote Speaker" returns over 11 million results.  While it may be easy to find a speaker on the Internet, it's very difficult to find the right speaker for your event.  As the meeting planner, a lot is riding on this.  You can't afford the time to sift though millions of search results and you can't afford an unwise choice. Here are some recommendations to point you in the right direction.

1.) Ask your colleagues about their favorite speakers.  Research shows* 84% of you already do this, and with good reason.  Peer recommendations are some of the most reliable sources.

2.) Ask for recommendations from Staff and Members. This is the second highest rated way meeting planners find speakers.

3.)  Ask your speaker's bureau for a list of recommendations based on your needs. Although only* 57% of meeting planners use speakers bureaus as a resource, we (of course) feel it should be higher!  Gathering suggestions from staff and colleagues is an excellent starting point, but here's an opportunity for you to run that list by an independent source who has worked with these speakers before, who know how willing they are to please the client (or not), and which speakers really deliver.  Independent Speakers Bureaus like the Goodman Speakers Bureau have your interests at heart and can make objective recommendations.

If you are new to event planning or have never used a bureau before, don't worry about the cost of using a speakers bureau--because there is none.  Speakers bureaus are paid by the speaker out of their honorarium.  Since we have relationships with thousands of speakers, we can find the right keynote speaker for virtually any meeting.  We also act as your partner through the contractual process. Speakers bureaus deliver high value at no cost to the meeting planner, and act as an extended part of your team from proposal to contract to the moment the speaker leaves the stage.

If you are looking for a great keynote speaker for your next event, given us a call first. We can save you days of research and give you a head start on your planning, as well as assist you with contracts, logistical arrangements and support.  We also handle details like books, media images, speaker bios and headshots.

Contact us at 1-800-875-2893 or email us at info@goodmanspeakersbureau.com for more information.

*Statistics Source:  Velvet Chainsaw The Speaker Report 2013
Resource Meeting Planner

You are planning a conference and you need a great keynote speaker to close out the conference on the final evening of the event. Someone who can engage the audience, drive home the message from the executive team, and fire up the attendees.  You need someone who gets it.  A lot is riding on this conference.  Your company is spending a lot of money and you cannot afford to misstep on the big finale. You start with a simple Internet search but soon realize there are literally thousands of choices.  One speaker home page looks like the next.  How can you know who is going to do not just a good job, but a great job?

The things is, you can't know.  That's the time to talk to a speakers bureau. Speakers bureaus have invested time developing relationships with hundreds of speakers.  They know who delivers, and who might prove inconsistent or risky.  The first step is to pick up the phone and call your speakers bureau and discuss what you need.

Things to know before you call

  • Date and location of  the meeting.
  • Is there a strategic message that you are trying to communicate? Or, program theme?
  • Male/female ratio and average age.
  • Educational background of attendees.
  • Which division/department of the company/organization are they from?

Things the Goodman Speaker Bureau will ask you about your meeting

We will be looking for insights from you. You might be surprised how these questions allow us to recommend the right keynote speaker for your event.

  • What challenges is your industry, organization or audience facing?
  • What personal interests inspire your executive team? Are they fans of a particular sport? Are they strictly business, or do the appreciate humor, music, creative-thinking, or science?
  • What are your expectations of the keynote speaker to help you communicate the message of the meeting?
  • What ideal “take away” would you like the speaker’s presentation to deliver? 
  • Beyond the keynote, are there other expectations of the speaker? (i.e., question & answer session, book signing, reception attendance, follow-up webinar) 
  • How important do you feel the outside speaker is to the overall success of the meeting?
  • What is the budget for the speaker?

After the initial call, we will propose a list of speakers (with biographies, head shots, fee ranges and related video) we feel would be a great fit for your meeting.  But before you choose, allow us to arrange a conference call between your team and the speaker, so you can be sure that keynote speaker can really communicate the message.

Once you have selected a speaker, we go to the contract phase.  At this point, you will want to be sure you account for any requests or details you require of the speaker.  If you want the speaker to play a round of golf with the CEO the morning of the big closing keynote, that should be outlined in the contract.  If the speaker is a former NFL star and you want him to autograph footballs for the leading salespeople of the district, that needs to be stipulated in the contract.  If you need 500 copies of the speakers book for every member of the audience, that too should be outlined in advance.  Yes, last minute changes do happen, and we as the speakers bureau can often amend an agreement after the fact, but it's best to get these details dealt with early and up front, in case an accommodation cannot be made.

Event Logistics

After all the contracts and speaker agreements are signed, the Goodman Speakers Bureau works with your team to provide logistic support.  We act as a liaison between the meeting planner and the professional speaker, communicating transportation details, A/V requirements, providing marketing materials to the meeting planning team for the event, and ensuring both parties have all the necessary logistic information.  We also arrange for pre-event conference calls to ensure the speaker and key members of the executive team are in sync and on message.  Most of our business speakers and thought leaders customize their message for the client, and often act in a consultative role to help companies and organizations communicate the right message.  No two speeches are alike, and whatever your business, we work with some extraordinary speakers who deliver the best speeches to your audience.  Some of our speakers use pre-event questionnaire to ensure the client is getting exactly what they are looking for in a presentation.  Additionally, we are one of the few bureaus who tracks the weather nationwide for possible issues with transportation affecting the arrival of a speaker. We are always looking ahead and planning alternative forms of transportation in case of a snowstorm or other unusual travel delay.

Follow up

After the event is over and our speaker has given a fantastic performance, we follow up with you, the event planner, to see how it went. Customer service and strong positive relationships are paramount to the Goodman Speakers Bureau, and your feedback always helps us deliver the best events.

Need a hand with your next event?  Let the Goodman Speakers Bureau help you select a winning speaker, and see it through to the standing ovation.  Call us at 800-875-2893.  Remember, it costs you nothing!  We only get paid if you book the speaker and we are paid by the speaker.  So what are you waiting for?  Let us help you hit your next event out of the park.

"Image courtesy of stockimages / FreeDigitalPhotos.net"

Meeting Planner

When a speaker is contracted for an event, it's seldom they cancel for any reason, but it can and does happen.  A last minute cancellation, for any reason, can easily send a meeting planner into a panic.  After all, the speaker is often the highlight of the event. But if the meeting planner used a speakers bureau, they have a strong trusted ally in the storm.

Case in point, we recently had a speaker for an event scheduled with the State of Connecticut.  At noon the day before the event, the speaker called and cancelled, for a very good reason (there was a serious medical emergency with a family member), and the event was without a speaker. He was scheduled to speak at 9AM the next morning, only giving the meeting planner, and our team at the Goodman Speakers Bureau, about a 6 hour window to track down and secure an appropriate speaker.  Additionally, because of the tight time frame, that speaker needed to be somewhat local. With an event kicking off the next day or in some cases, already underway, a meeting planner has zero time and resources to find a substitute speaker.

That's where we come in.  Since the meeting planner arranged the speaker through us, we we able quickly find a replacement who was based here in Connecticut to pinch hit for our speaker in crisis.  Anne Parmenter was gracious enough to step into fairly large shoes and with very little notice or preparation time, knocked it out of the park. We received a very grateful testimonial from the meeting organizer who raved about the speaker we found. Here's the testimonial from our client:

"Anne Parmenter did FABULOUS job as the keynote presenter for State Managers Day, September 26, 2014.  Feedback from many agencies and a wide variety of individuals was that they LOVED her and wanted to hear more! Anne gave us such a wonderful tailored presentation filled with drama and humor, that kept people talking all day! I was impressed I with her heartfelt stories, amazing pictures of her Everest experience, and her style of bringing people along with her passion for this one of a kind adventure, while linking lessons to everyday life.  Her last minute engagement made it all the more remarkable."

So if you want that extra layer of insurance when organizing your event, use a speakers bureau.  We are with you every step of the way from selection to the time the speaker walks off the stage.  Don't go it alone!  We won't leave you high a dry after the contracts are signed.  We take the success of your event seriously--because YOUR success is OUR success!

Weather & Winter Woes: Coming Out Ahead of the Storm Resource Meeting Planner Speakers

Our most recent storm here in the Northeast, which began its trouble earlier in the Midwest, is another reminder how important proactivity and communication are when dealing with speaker travel arrangements. The truth is, it’s not just a winter or a location specific problem. All year long there are a series of independent forces wreaking havoc on the best laid travel plans. Our program managers are always looking at the national weather map, tracking speakers originating and destination cities, looking for any potential problems.

Here’s a case example of a situation here at Goodman Speakers during the Blizzard of 2015.
When forecasters began to up the severity of Juno early Sunday morning, our program managers immediately looked at the calendar and began to see which speakers could potentially have issues. We had one speaker originating from the Qatar in the Middle East, heading to Midwest for a program on Tuesday. The speaker had also hoped to stop at home for a night in New Jersey. After seeing the flight cancellations beginning to pile up, we immediately contacted the speaker’s office and strongly encouraged them to change the flight, bypass home and go straight to the event. Thankfully, they all agreed and the speaker changed his flight that day so that the speaker would arrive at his destination on Monday without too much headache, just 28 hours of travel…

Meanwhile, our team had a backup speaker in mind, on the outside chance the original speaker experienced any more delays or cancellations.

What did and can we all learn from these situations:

  • Be proactive: don’t wait until flights are cancelled
  • Communication: make sure everyone is aware of the potential problem and agree upon a solution, early on.
  • Have a backup plan

Also, don’t forget about any fee or rate increases the speaker and client may incur with the changing schedule, this may include a fare increase, change fees, additional accommodations, etc.

Stay calm, communicate often, and it doesn’t hurt to cross your fingers, because sometimes luck does play a role in having a successful event.

Keynote Success Microphones Meeting Planner

Congratulations! You’ve hired the right keynote speaker to deliver a message that resonates with your meeting objectives, while meeting the needs of your audience and stakeholders. As the event approaches, here are ten tips to maximize your success on presentation day:

1. Position the speaker on the agenda where he/she will provide the most impact.
Examples: A corporation announcing a new global change initiative may want to position a keynote on embracing change at the opening general session to increase the audience’s receptiveness to the organization’s mission. Whereas, an association that has struggled with attendees departing early, may want to position one of their professional speakers as the closing keynote to increase chances of attendees staying for the full duration of the conference.
2. Schedule a pre-event conference call between the speaker and the internal client or senior leader.
This allows the speaker to understand the needs of the organization, challenges the audience may face and ask clarifying questions. The speaker is able to gather information needed to customize his message to your specific group.
3. Consider room sets that maximize audience engagement. The closer the audience is to the speaker, the more the connection and attention.
Dance floors, or wide open center aisles directly in front of the speaker, can separate a speaker from the audience, while theater-style seating or round tables as close to the stage as possible will maximize engagement.
4. Obtain advance written permission to record from the speaker.
If you are recording the session, always obtain the speaker’s written permission well in advance. Keynotes typically contain the intellectual property of the speaker and may have recording limitations or fees that apply.
5. Review your Event Profile prior to the event to be sure the speaker logistics are completed and accurate.
Goodman Speakers Bureau provides this document to clients as a tool to keep both the meeting planner and the speaker on track for success. By summarizing the audience profile, meeting objectives, travel arrangements, emergency contact info and other vital details, everyone has an easy reference sheet to use on-site.
6. Allow the speaker to arrive at the destination in advance.
By arriving the night before, a speaker can familiarize themselves with the facility/attendees, give the planner some peace of mind, and get a good night’s rest. This is of key importance for International travel, wintry destinations or whenever weather may present an added challenge. In times of threatening storms, (sometimes in the speaker’s point of departure), a speaker may need to arrive two days prior.
7. Conduct a sound check or audio-visual rehearsal.
Be sure to schedule an AV check in advance. Professional speakers will want to familiarize themselves with the room ahead of time. This is an opportunity to test PowerPoint presentations, (if not already provided in advance), meet the production team, do a sound check and reassure everyone that you are good to go! Don’t forget to have fresh batteries in your wireless microphone at the beginning of the conference and always have a back up set.
8. Provide good lighting that clearly illuminates the speaker and podium.
This helps direct the audience’s attention on the speaker and keep it there. Ideally, the audience should be dimmed, but not dark. The speaker will want to read the audience’s reactions and adapt the speech accordingly, as needed.
9. Schedule mealtime speeches to start after the conclusion of food service.
To avoid noise and distractions, keynotes held after a breakfast, lunch or dinner should begin after the wait staff has finished clearing the meals. It is very difficult for speakers to retain everyone’s attention when they have to compete with the din of service and lingering conversations. If time limitations are a challenge, pre-set the dessert and have coffee offered right after entrees have been served. Final clearing should be done after the keynote.
10. Observe, Enjoy and Evaluate.
Enjoy the fruits of your labor by watching the speaker’s presentation. Observe the audience’s reaction and monitor engagement. Did you get the results you anticipated? Evaluations sent after the program are ideal opportunities for capturing the thoughts of attendees and helping you launch next year’s selection process with solid criteria for planning the next search for the right keynote speaker!

Goodman and Northstar Partnership
Speaker Referenced: 
 Hannah Ubl   Michael Rogers   Heidi Hanna   Chris Bashinelli   Simon T. Bailey  Press Meeting Planner Speakers Sponsorship

WINDSOR, CT—March 12, 2014—The Goodman Speakers Bureau is pleased to announce their partnership with Northstar Meetings Group for 2015. Goodman will sponsor speakers for several events held by Meeting & Conventions and Successful Meetings, Northstar owned subsidiaries, throughout 2015. This partnership is a commitment by both parties to provide educational and forward-thinking content to further the meetings industry.

These events, such as Meeting & Conventions' Interact and destination-focused events, give planners the chance to experience the industry’s most topical and influential speakers. It also affords them the opportunity to ask questions and engage with the speakers. Diane Goodman states, “I am beyond thrilled to be partnering with Northstar, it is a great opportunity to be part of, and contribute to, the education that moves our industry forward.”

Attendees receive the added benefit of listening to engaging and educational content. So far Goodman has scheduled Hannah Ubl, generational expert, speaking on What Millennials Mean to the Meetings Industry at the upcoming Interact Southeast; technology pioneer, futurist, and journalist Michael Rogers for Destination Northeast; performance coach Heidi Hanna’s Investment Strategies for Your Most Valuable Resource for Destination California; Chris Bashinelli’s Global Citizenship: From Brooklyn to Africa for M&C Global Interact; and leadership catalyst Simon T. Bailey and Dear World founder Robert Fogarty for M&C Interact later this summer in New Orleans.

Meeting & Conventions and Successful Meetings events bring together high-level meeting professionals with leading suppliers in a spectacular setting and productive business format. They afford event planners the opportunity to meet and engage with vendors and to further their professional development. For more information on their events, please visit Meeting & Conventions events page. Meeting & Conventions and Successful Meetings are products of Northstar Travel Media, LLC. For more information about Northstar and its other meetings and travel-related brands, visit www.ntmllc.com.

The Goodman Speakers Bureau provides insight, guidance, perspective and advice to assist meeting planners in selecting the best professional speakers for their event. Done with the highest level of integrity, passion, professionalism, and service, the Goodman Speakers Bureau works to match the best motivational, inspirational, business and thought-leading speakers for client meetings. The Goodman Speakers Bureau is located at 56 Poquonock Avenue, Windsor, CT 06095.

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Goodman Speakers Bureau Speaker Showcase
Speaker Referenced: 
 Scarlett Lewis   Jon Stetson   David Romanelli  Photo Gallery Meeting Planner Speakers

We were so excited to have our speaker showcase at the lovely Marriott in downtown Hartford, CT last night. We were lucky enough to have our old and new clients and friends come out to hear three of our inspirational speakers teach us how to embrace life each and every day. The Marriott ensured that we had a relaxing evening with great food. The ambiance allowed us to sit back and listen to the powerful messages being said, while we ate delectable hors d'oeuvres. The mini tacos were a great introduction to the wonderful meal we were about to have. Our speakers then took the stage to share their unique wisdom.

Jon Stetson
Jon Stetson made us all feel like we were children again witnessing a magic show. His ability to read minds kept us in awe from start to finish. Jon was able to influence our thoughts, while decoding our body language to read our minds. He invited several audience members, including one of our employees, to demonstrate the power paying attention to detail. No matter how many times we see Jon perform, we will always be amazed by his talents.

Scarlett Lewis
Scarlett Lewis then warmed our hearts with a tribute to her son, Jesse Lewis, and a message of compassion. She showed us that no matter what may happen, we can always choose to love rather than hate. Scarlett was an inspiration to everyone in the audience and made us strive to learn forgiveness. Her simple mantra, motivated from Jesse, “Nurturing. Healing, Love” provides us with the courage to change our angry thoughts into compassion and happiness.

David Romanelli
David Romanelli then talked to us about living in the moment. He showed us that some of the oldest people across the world still embrace life to the fullest, which inspired the audience to go out and make memories. He explained the importance of loving and embracing the little things that make a moment joyous. He left us on an uplifting note with some delicious chocolate and wine to make sure we had our enjoyable moment of the day. His message of everyday happiness flowed beautifully after Scarlett's speech on the importance of love.

We want to thank everyone who came and made this night one to remember!

An image of Paul Viollis talking about travel and security
Speaker Referenced: 
 Paul Viollis  Meeting Planner Cyber Security Travel

The Event Planner’s Guide to Travel Security by Paul Viollis

Balancing event productivity/profitability with ongoing criminal intelligence and venue related risk is perhaps more challenging than ever before for the event planner. Given the increased risk of terrorism both on American soil and abroad amidst a plethora of other domestic and foreign concerns, this cadre of professionals is clearly in a precarious position as they attempt to solidify the 2016 calendar.

During what is arguably some of the most tumultuous times in recent history, ensuring safe travel and a positive experience is of paramount concern. It is with this in mind that the adage "Proper Planning Avoids Panic and Paranoia" rings true.

Regardless of the mode of travel, traveling domestically or internationally presents inherent risks if due caution is not exercised. Travel security within the U.S. generally presents lower risk levels than traveling to international markets. However, with community violence at its worst level since the civil rights riots, this is most definitely a concern that must be taken into account. International travel has and will continue to be hampered by the growth of groups such as ISIS, and the ongoing increase of "Express Kidnap" scenarios from resort areas. Therefore, it is incumbent upon us all to re-examine the manner in which we plan our travel, the precautions we take while traveling, our mind-set regarding safety upon arrival at our destination, and the distinction between domestic and international travel risks.

Given the apparent risks and the need for peace of mind, the following illustrates current "Best Practices" for enhancing personal safety during travel.

Pre-Travel Planning

  • Limit travel itinerary to a "need to know" basis and delegate someone as a 24/7 contact and arrange daily communication protocol.
  • Every traveler should have a system of accountability for tracking family members while traveling. This information must be limited to involved parties only and never discussed outside that inner circle.
  • Provide prearranged car service submitting segments of travel only.
  • Ensure no signs are presented to identify the individual traveling by name at the airport.
  • Identify alternative routes of travel, including different modes of transportation, to provide prompt response in the event of a crisis.
  • Select a separate credit card to be used for all travel reservations and accommodations.
  • Make copies of wallet contents and passport/visa prior to travel.
  • Ensure all required medication is packed in carry-on bags.
  • Remove all forms of identification from travel bags by substituting them with other identifying features.

There is no reason to advertise who you are or where you live. One alternative is to place a tag with your business address without company name on your bags. In the event you are claiming a lost bag, your picture ID with proof of business address will suffice.

  • Bring and utilize luggage ties to secure luggage and ensure the safety of your belongings while they are left unattended in a hotel room.
  • It is recommended to not register or make reservations in one's own name if the individual is well known and prone to attracting unwanted attention.
  • When possible, book hotel rooms between the second and seventh floors to limit first floor access while still being positioned safely for emergency evacuation if necessary.

Travel Precautions

  • Always maintain a low profile.
  • Avoid routine patterns and vary travel routes.
  • Be conscious of being followed.
  • Never leave a laptop or any type of mobile electronic device unattended and only travel with needed data by utilizing removable media/data storage.
  • Affix an identification label to the outside of laptop to avoid confusion of ownership while processing through secure checkpoints.
  • Morning arrivals and departures are recommended.
  • Take caution when conversing with strangers despite their personal appearance.
  • Avoid traveling with items that are not absolutely necessary.
  • Limit items to be carried.
  • Dine in recognized eateries not off the beaten path.
  • Avoid street vendor food.
  • While flying, remain at the entrance of the metal detector until your bags have gone through the X-ray machine and never let them out of your sight for any time period.
  • If flying commercially, once on the plane, keep your carry-on beneath your seat in lieu of in the overhead compartment.
  • While traveling by train, enter and remain in only those cars that are occupied.
  • Do not joke about weapons and/or explosives personal safety upon arrival.
  • From airport arrival, travel to the hotel and throughout your stay, there is a great deal that can be done to enhance overall personal safety. At each and every destination, providing the previously mentioned front end precautions were taken, the following should be practiced as the rule, not the exception.
  • Keep door locked while in the room.
  • Avoid public areas of the hotel as criminal/terrorist activity is drawn to these areas.
  • Do not under any circumstances discuss the nature of the trip with anyone and be cautious of the information discussed over the telephone.
  • Avoid nighttime activity away from the hotel if feasible.
  • If away from hotel, always watch drinks while they are being poured and never leave them unattended.
  • Be sure any time a credit card is used it is promptly returned and do not give it to bartender to establish a tab.
  • Avoid using your own name when making social reservations.
  • Ensure that daily contact is made with the delegated point of contact (POC) and that contingencies are developed assessing international travel risk conduct and due diligence on the location(s) of travel to determine an accurate threat based upon the following checklist:
    • Social issues
    • General crime and corruption issues (to include limits to personal rights if held by local authorities)
    • Active terrorist groups
    • Organized crime activity
    • Propensity for kidnap and extortion
    • Labor instability
    • Local ethnic/extremist religious issues
    • Infrastructure and environmental situation
    • Political climate
    • Economic strength and income discrepancy
    • Health and public safety risks
    • Areas not to visit, roads not to travel, taxis not to take, and rentals not to use
    • Weather/climate concerns
    • Hotels/restaurants/hospitals/clinics not to frequent
    • Secure travel contingencies in the event of a disruption in schedule

The advisor should recommend a reliable personal protection specialist and security driver (24/7) once the travel due diligence is completed and it is determined the intended destination presents substantial risks. Once it is determined the threat level has been addressed, the following preparations and precautions should be taken:

  • Obtain foreign currency in advance, consisting of small denominations, and avoid carrying large sums of cash.
  • Program cellular phones with local one-touch emergency telephone numbers.
  • Identify medical facilities in and around the area(s) of destination in advance.
  • Bring a copy of passport, driver's license, and related visa documents to be kept in a separate location in the event of being lost or stolen.
  • Leave your passports in the hotel safe (providing it is a well-known, internationally recognized property).
  • Carry a card with personal medical information, including blood type, medications (including those causing allergic reactions) and physician contact numbers.
  • Only use ATMs during the day and preferably inside a bank.
  • Beware of pickpockets and the common techniques they use (distractions, such as jostling, spilling something on you, asking for directions or the time, solicitation of items, and small groups, oftentimes of children, that you must pass through).
  • Ensure daily communications are scheduled in advance with point of contact (POC).
  • Develop consistent code words/phrases to alert PGC to an adverse situation.

In sum, perhaps the greatest explanation point on the planning process is to never forget "Cheap IS Expensive". Proper due diligence is no longer a nicety but a necessity.

An image of Andy Cohen Speaking
Speaker Referenced: 
 Andy Cohen  Meeting Planner

“It’s like planning your own wedding,” said the strategy director of a global company.
She was referring to a management event that she and two other executives were in charge of producing and in which they invited me to give a keynote.
Her point was revealing. Are corporations thrusting the responsibility of having the people who run departments put on the meetings themselves as a cost saving strategy? If so, this often proves to be a costly assumption as explained later.
Another dangerous assumption is that event planning is like party planning. But the reality is quite the opposite. Weddings are about creating a wonderful experience for the moment with memories that last a lifetime.
Internal corporate events are about creating powerful experiences that drive change over time and impact the bottom line.
Assuming that party planning is the same as event planning is a dangerous assumption to make for a number of reasons:

  1. Costs. Executives trained in manufacturing, compliance, marketing, etc. are pulled away from what they do best to having to negotiate hotel rates, chair counts, union AV personal, food orders and overall event contracts. Any good executive can focus on learning these new tasks which take time and experience to learn. Besides why would a corporation want to distract them from their true operations that brings in profit to the bottom line of the company? From a cost perspective, it doesn’t make sense.
  2. Awareness: Often executives tasked with putting on an event aren’t aware that their organization has meeting planners to engage or get advice. Many times the responsibility for negating a contact is left with the executive’s administrative assistant. Without the input from a meeting planner who knows the true costs there’s a chance that the organization will pay more then they had to.
  3. Understanding parameters: I watched a conference hotel manager bully an executive who organized and ran the event. This executive was truly upset by the lack of delivery of certain logistics but lacked the experience in knowing what was acceptable or not. In addition, he didn’t speak the“conference-ez” of the hotel manager, which weakened his demands.

Sometimes the size of an event is too small to warrant the cost of engaging a meeting planner. To counter this, meeting and event planners have supplied “tool boxes” to those in charge as a way of helping understand what a meeting entails and guidelines for negotiating, scheduling, etc. Again, this underscores the value of a good Meeting Planner, especially one who is certified.

But in a majority of cases, to assume that putting on an event is equivalent to a “no brainer” party is a dangerous assumption. That is costly in time, energy and at the end of the day profitability for the organization. It’s an assumption worth challenging.
After all, having executives matched with having to plan the event doesn’t necessarily make for a good marriage.
Andy Cohen is the Chief Assumption Officer at Andy Cohen Worldwide. He recently Keynoted at the CMP Conclave to helps members identify dangerous assumptions that act as barriers to managing clients and driving solutions. He then provided the tools to challenge those assumptions in order to drive profit, growth and change. It’s called the Assumpt!

Speaker Referenced: 
 Heidi Hanna  Meeting Planner

As meeting planners, you have the opportunity to influence the learning environment in a way that will provide optimal return on investment for your clients. It’s important to be aware of fundamental concepts related to how the brain learns, retains, and applies new information. The most essential strategy for energy-efficient meetings is to create a healthy oscillation or rhythm throughout the day that mirrors the way the human system is designed to function at its best – as a series of sprints rather than one long marathon.

  • Provide guidance on meal and snack selections
  • Assist with agenda/schedule to incorporate healthy oscillation, movement and strategic breaks
  • Facilitate (additional fee may apply) guided meditation, morning or afternoon group workout, or other recharge break

The 10 most important energy management tips for creating an optimal learning environment:

  1. Encourage physical activity every hour
  2. Aim for meeting space that has access to fresh air and natural light when possible
  3. Schedule shorter learning sessions with time to debrief and discuss key takeaways with other participants for consolidation of learning
  4. Provide meals and snacks that have adequate protein to stabilize blood sugar
  5. Build in time for personal reflection and comfortable transition in between sessions
  6. Make sure speakers stick with time schedule and honor break time as important as any other session – once boundaries become loose, stress hormones spike and learning is compromised
  7. Always end with an action planning session where attendees can revisit key learning, write down important takeaways and establish accountability regarding how they will apply their new knowledge
  8. Create a culture of full-engagement that discourages multitasking by requesting all technology to be in airplane mode or off during sessions
  9. Incorporate healthy humor, play and creativity to decrease stress and boost brainpower
  10. Never compromise sleep and downtime by running sessions too late in the evening or cramming the agenda too full.
Speaker Referenced: 
 Michael Lyons  Meeting Planner

There has always been a “Generation Gap”, but today it is widening and becoming more complex, posing issues both in our professional and social world. In the meetings industry in particular, designing events that will appeal to all attendees is becoming an ongoing challenge, especially as it relates to the youngest delegates.
For the first time in history in the U.S. there are four generations in the workplace:

  • Traditionalists (Born between 1922 and 1945)
  • Baby Boomers: (1946 to 1964)
  • Gen Xers: (1965 to 1977)
  • Gen Ys (Millennials - 1978 or later)

The biggest change all of us are facing is how technology has invaded our daily lives and how it is being used by these 4 different groups. The mobile workforce (Millennials), a relatively small, but influential bunch, are the first generation to embrace mobile technology and social media on a regular basis. An astounding 95% of Millennials are online, so it's safe to say that being connected is a daily necessity. And meeting planners have to account for those habits.

Today’s event planners must shift their thinking to correspond to the generational shift that is occurring so their events meet expectations. Here are a few things to consider that will satisfy both Gen X and Gen Y attendees:

  • Provide Value before they get on-site
    This doesn’t mean an email blast, Twitter hashtag or other Social Media outreach, which is expected. Rather, create a buzz and a call to action before they get to the event. For example, if it’s a large industry event, have delegates submit videos beforehand to showcase a new or innovative product or idea they have that is relevant and worth sharing with the entire audience.
  • Create Interest upon entering the room
    Try a seating style that’s different from what they are accustomed to. Classroom and roundtable seating certainly have their applications, but when an attendee walks into a room with a different or innovative set-up, they immediately become interested. Use all the different style tables and configurations that the venue has.
  • Remind delegates what they Should be Thinking
    Prepare a compelling opening such as a dazzling video. Outline key concepts in a logical sequence to begin the presentation, emphasizing "real world" significance. Consider using “Picture in Picture” applications with a large center screen for content and 2 side screens for conversation topics, quotes or twitter hashtags that you want the attendees to keep front of mind.
  • Tell them what Others are Thinking
    Provide the delegates with “Instant Information Gratification”. Set up an email account and have attendees send their questions, thoughts and opinions to that email address. Have a dedicated graphics operator put the information on the screen. This is similar to Twitterfall or Protected Tweets, but allows you to fully manage content that appears on screen.
  • Manage the growing "Appification" of your meeting or event
    Smart Devices have changed the way people communicate and increasingly, meeting managers are beginning to uncover the ability that apps have to improve attendee efficiency, productivity and engagement. The most important consideration is this: How will the app promote “ROE” (Return on Experience) for each attendee? Don’t lose sight of your meeting objectives and what information can legally be shared, in light of privacy.
Speaker Referenced: 
 Shawna Suckow  Meeting Planner

In these days of media overload, smart devices and multi-tasking, our conferences struggle more than ever to capture and hold the attention of our attendees. They’ll give us their polite attention for only a few minutes, and if we don’t give them rich experiences, they’ll leave – either physically, or by diving into their devices for distraction. The challenge is compounded by today’s culture, where everybody demands and expects an individualized experience.

What’s a planner to do?

Here are some tips you can implement to rev up your audience engagement:

  1. In your Call for Speakers, ask your speakers what percentage of their program includes audience participation. Don’t settle for less than 25% unless it’s a proven keynote speaker. Then ask HOW the audience will participate. Don’t settle for a simple show of hands every few minutes – audiences demand more today, or they’ll tune out.
  2. My research has shown that the magic number is eight. If an attendee meets just eight new people at a conference, that attendee is more likely to feel like he is part of the company or association. He’s more likely to engage more fully throughout the conference, and he’s more likely to come to the next conference, as well. I work with planners to put strategic networking activities right at the beginning of the event, so everybody meets at least eight people on day one.
  3. Speaking of strategic networking, it’s important, especially to first-time attendees and introverts. I don’t mean cheesy networking exercises (although sometimes, depending on the audience, cheesy is good!). I mean networking with a purpose. Structured networking is well facilitated, full of guidance and activities, so people aren’t left to their own devices to strike up awkward conversations at the open bar. It can be completely fun-based, or specific to the goals and objectives of the meeting hosts. Attendees can meet others with similar roles, geographies, or challenges, and have meaningful conversations as a result.
  4. There are over five trillion different learner types today – more than there are human beings! One example – some people learn best first thing in the morning, while others learn best later in the day. Offer opportunities for people to connect and have meaningful discussions throughout the day, like informal round table topics at breakfast, or more structured round table discussions as a session during the day.
  5. Schedule longer breaks. 15 minutes is not enough anymore, if you want your attendees to truly connect. 30-45 minutes is ideal. Before everyone leaves for the break, I often suggest a discussion topic relevant to a session or speaker. Not everyone may want to discuss that topic, but those who do will be grateful for the suggestion, and will find like-minded others.

The days of back-to-back lectures are fading. Attendees by and large want opportunities to collaborate with one another, share ideas, and work on scenarios to learn new things. Give them those opportunities at your conference, and you’ll create year-round fans who will return again and again, and spread the word to others as well.

Shawna Suckow, CMP, is a professional speaker and audience engagement facilitator. She helps planners restructure tired meetings, and helps audiences to create connections that matter.

Do you want to understand your unique personality? Improve your communication skills? Create better personal and professional relationships?

Scott Schwefel teaches audiences how to "communicate in full color" by understanding their personality. Insights Discovery personality tool helps people be self-aware and improves their communication with others. Scott provides individuals and organizations the knowledge to increase sales, profits, and productivity.

Insights Discovery divides personalities into four main color quadrants. People can usually immediately identify with one color, which is their dominant communication style. Understanding your personality and the personality of others breaks down barriers and decreases miscommunication.

Below are the four different personality colors and adjectives that are generally associated with each different type.

Extroverted Personalities:
Fiery Red- Competitive, strong-willed, demanding, purposeful
Sunshine Yellow- Energetic, optimistic, outgoing, persuasive

Introverted Personalities:
Cool Blue- Cautious, precise, questioning, formal
Earth Green- Amiable, caring, patient, encouraging

You can better understand yourself when you learn which color energy you associate with the most. You also can learn more about co-workers, friends, and family when you learn the color energy that they associate with the most. This knowledge has the potential to improve decision-making, communication, and performance.

Learn more about Scott and how to identify and understand personalities by watching his TEDx Talk.

Speaker Referenced: 
 Scott Schwefel  Resource Meeting Planner
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