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The Magic of Words by Phil M Jones

By Phil M Jones | Sep 16, 2021 | Comments Off

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Words paint a thousand pictures, through stories, tales, and more. Creating imaginary worlds to jump into and explore.

Get Your Copy on Amazon Today!

Once upon a time…how those words can still conjure up the magic of childhood for many of us when our parents would read us books at bedtime. Perhaps you are a parent and are reading books to your little ones again.

Words are essential for all of us and have the power to build you up or tear you down. They can spark a war or negotiate peace.

Most adults still find it challenging to find the right words for the right moments.

And many adults still fail to understand the impact of what leaves their mouth, their pen or their keyboard

Could it be possible that reading a book like this with the children in our lives could help raise the consciousness of ourselves AND our children?

The young at heart can also hear simple truths from this book, so get your cup of tea and nestle into your armchair to read this book’s deceptively simple message on how your words each day will change your world.

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Illustrations by Eevi Jones

 

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How Do You Help Your People Achieve Greatness? by Heather R. Younger

By Heather Younger | Sep 13, 2021 | Comments Off

"We do not ever want to turn a blind eye to our employees. How much fruit would they be capable of bearing if they received a little more attention, a little more care."

Ignorance is Not Bliss
I have an entire chapter in my most recent book on leadership, The Art of Caring Leadership, on looking for greatness in those we lead. I detail how to take into consideration their strengths in order to better lead them and guide your organization to success. The art of leadership is perfected and achieves greater success when the leading extends beyond just the hands of leadership. The more you know about your employees’ strengths, the better your team will work.

While leadership can feel very lonely in theory, especially for leaders who are part of a one-person team, it is an action that thrives the more perspectives it takes into consideration. A leader who makes decisions without consulting others comes across as self-centered. Leaders, like all human beings, are imperfect and we have limited perspectives and often very particular points of view.


A Plumb Metaphor
Think of it in terms of this story. When I first moved into my house back in 2007, I barely noticed a big purple tree in our front yard. Fast forward a bit, my neighbors are moving away and they come over to say goodbye. She mentions how grateful she was for all the plums they got from our tree. It was a plum tree! I had a fruit-bearing tree in my yard for months without even noticing it! Luckily, my neighbor was able to put some of the plums to good use, but I wonder how many grew and died without ever being used.

We do not ever want to turn a blind eye to our employees. How much fruit would they be capable of bearing if they received a little more attention, a little more care. Heck, even just looking is the key sometimes. Imagine that, their talents on full display for anyone to see if you just stop and observe for a mere matter of minutes.

I don’t know about you, but I can attest I know what a plum looks like. I really just didn’t ever look. But the plums were right there, plumb in the middle of my yard.


What’s the Plum Tree in your Life?
In the chapter of my book on looking for and leveraging greatness, I detail some actionable steps leaders can take to notice more.

The first way to do this is by looking for the things that make your employees shine. Spend some time with them, ask them key questions and learn what it is that sets their hearts on fire. Whether work related or not, these details are invaluable and establish a deeper connection between leadership and employees.


A Fruitful Environment
There is something else that is just as important as watching for these shining moments: provide your employees a space to shine in. Begin meetings with casual discussion about people’s lives, listen to what it is they spend their time talking about, or what excites them. Make sure their position gives them room to take risks and innovate. If you manage employees who perform a lot of the “busy work” for your organization, then present them with a new challenge or task that expands their horizons more.

If you have routine meetings or performance reviews, then incorporate interview questions that get your team to consider their strengths and weaknesses. Sometimes people are very in tune with their best skills and lesser abilities. Asking someone what they can improve in and what they excel in can be very telling for a leader who has less time to devote to observational activities. The environment for conversations with leadership can be the perfect place to catch the driving passions of your team, the things that make their eyes light up.

Find Outside Support
It can be hard to be the sole driver of an initiative and one that requires deeper connections with all your employees is a tall order. I do encourage leaders to give as much of themselves as they can while trying to get to know their employees. I recognize that there are human limitations. To compensate for our own fallibility, I always recommend a secondary source of information. Your personal research might not unearth all the skills and talents of your team. Oftentimes, your employees aren’t even aware of all of their special talents. It’s better for everyone to also study your team’s strengths through an outside source.

One of the best ways to know and see where your employees produce their richest fruits is by using assessments to gauge their strengths. I love the StrengthsFinder assessment. Once you pin down their strengths you have the fun job of making sure they can utilize their skills and maximize their strengths. Trust me when I say, it is fun for both the employee and their leader when the employee discovers the best that’s inside of them. People thrive doing what they are good at, and we tend to enjoy it more too.

Other Ways to Harvest
Apart from going to the employee themselves, or to their scores on assessments, there are other means of discovering your teams’ strengths.

● Social or intranet posts
● All staff feedback
● Team successes and failures


After exercising each of these principles to uncover your team’s strengths, you will be well-equipped to open the doors for your employees so that they may thrive.

Without considering your team’s strengths and giving them opportunities to use them, your organization can suffer. Organizations that don’t offer fertile soil for your employees to grow in find themselves held back by things like: revenue losses, tarnished reputation, lost customers and a lack of faith in leadership.

Be a part of their success story and they will be the fruits of yours.

Buy Heather's book today, "The Art of Caring Leadership: How Leading with Heart Uplifts Teams and Organizations" 

 

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How to Cope in a World that’s Off Balance by Dan Thurmon

By Dan Thurmon | Sep 09, 2021 | Comments Off

"Embracing an off-balance life allows our minds to learn the patterns that we have created in our life and to determine whether they are working for us, or not."

How are we coping? For many of us, not all that well. The world has become off-balance in ways that we thought were predictable. Mental health conditions are continuing to increase worldwide. There are 47.1 million people in the US, according to Mental Health in America (MHA), that are struggling with anxiety and depression. With statistics like this, it is more important than ever that we learn new coping strategies and new ways to find our life balance.

Bestselling author, Dan Thurmon offers life-changing strategies in his book, Off Balance On Purpose, that will help you cut through the malaise and helplessness you are experiencing about your job, your personal life, and other important aspects of your life. Let’s start with a fundamental question - how do you find the balance in a world that is completely off-balance? First, you must learn to accept the fact that life is not static, but is completely fluid by nature. Embracing an off-balance life allows our minds to learn the patterns that we have created in our life and to determine whether they are working for us, or not.

Next, all aspects of your life are connected to one another. You experience that when you have a personal issue that has made you upset or sad, or you are not feeling well, and it impacts your general mood and approach to life. Many experts and authors tell us that in order to achieve “life balance,” we must keep the various aspects of our life separate – or compartmentalized, like rooms in a house. This line of thought will lead to frustration as our life aspects are like the river, ever-changing and never static.

Understanding what the 5 spheres of influence are in your life will help you see the shape of your life pattern and help you to better integrate your life aspects between the spheres.

The 5 spheres of influence are:
  • Your Work
  • Your Relationships
  • Your Health
  • Your Spiritual Growth
  • Your Passions/Personal Interests

If you look at each of these as 5 different pursuits, you’re always going to be overwhelmed – there’s never enough time. But, when you see these 5 spheres as interconnected, you will see that small or big adjustments can be made to the connections between them. I call the connections between these spheres, lifelines.

The 10 lifelines are the key to a more fulfilling life and rewarding life – they are:

  1. Work Relationships
  2. Work Health
  3. Work Spiritual Growth
  4. Work Personal Interests
  5. Relationships Health
  6. Relationships Spiritual Growth
  7. Relationships Personal Interests
  8. Health Spiritual Growth
  9. Health Personal Interests
  10. Spiritual Health Personal Interests

When you began to anticipate, prepare for, and correct breaks along your lifelines, you will begin to see a more fulfilled life. How about work and health? Does your job support you to be healthy or challenge your health in certain ways? If so, what are you going to do about that?

Evaluate the lifelines between your 5 spheres of influence - are there changes you can make that will bring more harmony between the aspects of your life? Are there new ways of thinking that will eliminate negativity that is holding you back in one area, while impacting another one? Your mind is powerful – what you think is what you are. Change the patterns and choose to become off-balance, on purpose. You will be amazed at the happiness that is within your reach.

 

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Should You Do In-Person Events This Fall? by Phil M Jones

By Phil M Jones | Sep 07, 2021 | Comments Off

In person events provide one of the most in-depth learning experiences that is almost impossible to recreate in a virtual setting.

Last month, Phil M Jones did an event for American Equity in Las Vegas. When we chatted after the event, he said that he "felt safer at every part of that event than he does getting supplies from the grocery store." We asked him why and thought that his answers might be of interest to all of you who are seriously re-looking at your in-person events.

WE ASKED THE CLIENT:  How much extra effort/burden did all of your protocols put on your team/company?

And, we are very grateful that his client gave us his perspective as well which you'll also find below.

PS: a big shout-out to Speakers Spotlight for connecting Phil with their American Equity client!

KAREN: Was there anything your client at American Equity did to make you feel safe prior to the event?

PHIL: Prior to the event there was a level of diligence that really helped to give confidence that 2 things were being taken very seriously. One was the well-being of all who participated in the event itself and second was an unrelenting passion for creating a fabulous experience for attendees.

Making the effort to ensure all attendees could show a recent negative test was a huge reassurance in their dedication to safety, especially when backed up with not only their persistence in securing and documenting my own personal result, but also their numerous steps at the event itself.

KAREN: What happened when you arrived in Vegas? Was there something special that was done for you at the airport? with the car service? upon your arrival at The Cosmopolitan?

PHIL: As a solo traveller, I feel that typically I can navigate my own logistics to avoid too many unknowns, but the airport meet and greet removed an additional layer of human interaction that was very welcome.

KAREN: What type of protocols were implemented on-site for the attendees and yourself that made you feel safe and still like a human being?

PHIL: I think this is where things really shined. They created a dedicated space for their event and attendees. The main event hall, the lobby areas plus all the food and entertainment amenities were all private to event attendees only, were incredibly spacious and even the fact that a dedicated member of staff was serving coffees from the urn, plus dedicated staff were creating custom food plates, made a welcome and comforting change to the free-for-all of many past events.

When these steps were added to a well communicated and respected, colored lanyard, social distancing guideline, plus ample space for all attendees having their own dedicated desk space in the meeting room - there seemed to be ample space and respect to converse and communicate freely while being at a comfortable social distance.

Finally, there was an unwritten respect and grace that all presenters and on site staff had for all protocols - nobody was cracking jokes at the seriousness being taken - regular moments were taken to re-communicate the protocols to all attendees - and it was mostly normalized without judgement. This resulted in people seemingly accepting the rules as opposed to debating their place - this made for far more meaningful conversations.

KAREN: How valuable do you think this in-person event was for re-connecting and learning for the attendees?

PHIL: In-person events provide one of the most in-depth learning experiences that is almost impossible to recreate in a virtual setting. I am talking about peer to peer commentary, reflection, reinvention and creation. It is essential to spend time learning from the real experiences of others and challenge everyone’s thoughts by presenting them with new areas of focus.

A great speaker does the important job of sharing new ideas and then in turn starting new conversations - in-person events then develop those conversations, turning them into shared experience, collaborative thinking and then help create lasting change.

So many people are lacking inspiration, direction and purpose right now as well as a shared frustration. An in-person event can help deliver solutions to all those problems, with attendees leaving empowered, inspired, belonging and re-energized.

KAREN: Do you have any advice for anyone who is re-thinking their in-person event?

PHIL: The start of EVERY event is the audience and the responsibility for all of us in the industry is to deliver experiences that change their world. If you can still work within some very real constraints to create a life changing experience then fighting to achieve that, as opposed to picking the option of re-scheduling or streaming recorded content online, could well be worth the extra effort and energy.

Not ALL events should run - but we all know that GREAT events are one of the most powerful tools we all hold a part in to change our world.

WE ASKED THE CLIENT:  How much extra effort/burden did all of your protocols put on your team/company?

JOHN LICKTEIG, AMERICAN EQUITY: I will say there was a lot of extra effort that went forth in planning this event and was completely different from events I’ve done in the past. However we wanted to make sure all of our attendees felt safe in the environment they were in and I think my company delivered that flawlessly. We outlined and communicated all of the protocols that were set in place in order to host this live event.

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The Digital Chrysalis by Mike Walsh

By Mike Walsh | Sep 01, 2021 | Comments Off

Mike Walsh's video highlights rule #9, the future of AI is personal, from his 10 New Rules for a New World.

"A crisis is something you recover from, whereas a chrysalis is a bridge from one state to another."

One of the biggest dangers in any disaster is a premature plan for normalcy. As vaccine programs roll out worldwide, organizations and governments are preparing for economic recovery, a return to offices, corporate travel, and a resumption of business as usual. We all need a little optimism, but nostalgia can be as dangerous as disruption. Some doors are one-way only. What if the pandemic was not a crisis but rather a chrysalis?

The difference is a subtle but important one. A crisis is something you recover from, whereas a chrysalis is a bridge from one state to another. The difficulty is knowing whether the changes you are experiencing are merely temporary or part of a more permanent redefinition.

COVID-19 may have started as a crisis, but it quickly became a forcing function that unleashed digital transformation on every aspect of our lives - whether it be how we work or how we buy things, run our factories or deliver healthcare. What is likely to make these changes permanent is not just gains in efficiency but also the unexpected ways these forces are now interacting with each other.

More becomes different. More data, more computation, more automation, and more transactions - don’t just add up to more speed or resilience - they can reverberate throughout your organization until you become something else entirely. In any complex adaptive system - whether it be a supply chain, a workplace, or a biological ecosystem - small changes amplified by reinforcing feedback loops can hit critical mass and trigger radical reinvention. Water becomes ice; tremors become an earthquake; a viral video can make you a global star.

From this perspective, what if the end of the pandemic is not a pendulum swinging back to normality; but rather a portal from the world we knew to a radical new future that we are yet to fully understand? If you change enough of the infrastructure that runs what you do, at some point, you also change who you are. Likewise, if you change enough of the forces that run the world, you will inevitably change that as well.

I’ve spent the last year thinking about what all the small changes in our lives add up to. The list of pandemic era adaptations is long and constantly growing: working from home, social distancing, automated service delivery, augmented reality training, mRNA technologies, drones and robotics, process automation, telehealth services, retail live-streaming, AI-powered drug discovery, and the growing influence of data in the way we run our organizations.

I firmly believe that the sum of all of these innovations not only exceeds what we have seen before but also that their combination and interaction are the foundations of something new: a new world that runs on new rules.

I am in the process of researching the terrain of that new world and compiling what those new rules might be. They are the basis of my latest keynote presentation. Potentially, they may also be the basis of a new book. More on that later. 

 

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Relevant Keynote Speaker Topics by cmi

By cmiadmin | Aug 31, 2021 | Comments Off

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Whether your company is in real estate, education, finance, technology, human resources, or any other industry, these topics are relevant to your employees and leadership.

It can be difficult to find just the right keynote speaker for your organization’s events. The pandemic has carved out real-world issues like employee burn-out, working from home vs at your company, futuristic trends like AI, digital automation and a more urgent need for communications techniques to influence your customers. Your people need relevant topics such as these, delivered by experienced speakers who will inspire and motivate them, plus offer tools and techniques on how they can succeed in their industry.

cmi has world-class speakers, with years of experience, who offer topics that are pertinent to your industry, relevant to the post-pandemic landscape we currently live in and delivered in entertaining, inspiring methods that ensure your business team’s success. Whether your company is in real estate, education, finance, technology, human resources, or any other industry, these topics are relevant to your employees and leadership.

Explore 4 of cmi’s speakers and their current topics.

Tim Sanders

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Currently the Vice President of Customer Insights at Upwork, best-selling author of 5 books and strategic consultant, Tim helps businesses solve their talent gap problems, tackle marketing innovation, sales performance, talent management, leadership development, and organizational culture.

TOPICS

  • Getting Ahead of Burnout
  • The Art of Leading Remotely
  • Innovating Faster - Why Collaboration Changes Everything


WATCH TIM’s VIDEOS >


Mike Walsh

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Best-selling author of ‘The Algorithmic Leader’, Mike Walsh is a futurist for leaders, a Harvard Business Review columnist, a leading authority on technology, transformation and leadership who brings a uniquely global perspective to all his engagements.

TOPICS

  • New Rules For A New World
  • The Algorithmic Leader
  • The Rise of Generation AI
  • Designing Your Business for The 21st Century

WATCH MIKE’s VIDEOS >


Phil M Jones

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Phil M Jones is a master of influence and persuasion – the author of the best-selling “Exactly” Book Series with 1 million copies sold – and producer of the “Most Listened To” Audiobook of 2018. An entrepreneur since the age of 14, formerly the youngest sales leader of a major fashion retailer who also worked with a host of Premier League Football Clubs, Phil’s “Magic Words” give leaders more impact, sales teams improved conversions, and team members more influence in their daily conversations.

TOPICS

  • EXACTLY What to Say
  • The Magic Words for Influence and Impact
  • Lead, Inspire and Motivate others
  • Navigate
  • Win More

WATCH PHIL’s VIDEOS >


Heather R Younger

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Heather is the founder and CEO of Employee Fanatix, best-selling author of The Art of Caring Leadership, an International TEDx speaker on Adversity, Leadership Podcast Host, Business Coach, Facilitator and Attorney, who has earned a reputation as “The Employee Whisperer”. She holds a law degree and is a regular contributor to "Forbes" and "LinkedIn" and the best-selling author of The 7 Intuitive Laws of Employee Loyalty.

TOPICS

  • Building Resilience - How to Unleash Your Mindset and Overcome Any Challenge
  • Diversity and Inclusion - How to Build a Culture of Belonging
  • Sharing and Showing More Heart at Work: How to Attract and Retain Top Talent By Putting Your People First

    WATCH HEATHER’s VIDEOS>

 

The Recipe for Motivation by Ty Bennett

By Ty Bennett | Aug 25, 2021 | Comments Off


For you, as the leader, ability is the variable that you can influence the most, and the easiest. You can actively help others gain skills by providing mentoring, training, and education.

As leaders, we spend significant time and resources to motivate our teams. Most of this effort is focused on extrinsic motivation. Extrinsic motivation is the proverbial carrot and stick. Behavior is driven by the promise of a reward, or the fear of retribution. It is effective because it taps into our biological survival system.

Our survival systems relentlessly seek well-being and safety. When that survival system sees the carrot, it craves that reward and promotes thoughts and emotions that drive us to reach for that carrot. In contrast, when the survival system sees (or feels) the stick, it views the pain as a threat to well-being and safety and will go to great lengths to avoid that stick. Extrinsic motivation works—but it has limitations.

Intrinsic motivation, on the other hand, originates within us. It is internal and is not motivated by an external (carrot and stick) factor. One of the best research evaluations of intrinsic motivation was established in the Self Determination Theory. Edward Deci of Rochester University and Richard Ryan of Australian Catholic University originated this theory during the 1970s.

The theory argues that the most voluntary and high-quality motivation were dictated by conditions that support our people's Autonomy, Competence, and Relatedness. As leaders, we may not be able to control certain things, but we can influence conditions. We have the ability to provide the right conditions that will promote this high-quality, voluntary motivation. In other words, we can provide conditions that promote intrinsic motivation. In doing this, we can help to create the outcome we are looking for in those we lead.

Because of this research, we as leaders have been given an equation, a formula, a recipe if you will, to create high-quality, voluntary motivation—the type of motivation that drives your people to perform at their highest level.

The ingredients in that recipe are Autonomy, Competence, and Relatedness. In the Leader of Leaders Model, we argue that all three are essential, but Competency carries particular importance.

COMPETENCY EXPLAINED

Competency is that sweet spot where ability, experience, and confidence come together. To put it more simply:

ABILITY+EXPERIENCE+CONFIDENCE=COMPETENCE.

As leaders, we tend to focus primarily on ability when evaluating a learner. Ability, by itself, is simply to possess the skills and abilities to do something. However, skills alone do not produce a desired or successful outcome. Instead, desired outcomes require a learner to have the wisdom to apply skills effectively and efficiently. That wisdom comes through experience and confidence. This is why it is rare for a freshman or rookie athlete to make a gigantic impact on the field or on the court. Because although they possess great ability, they lack game experience and confidence to perform at this new level. Competency requires all three components.

COMPETENCY FROM THE LEARNERS PERSPECTIVE

Of the three competence pieces, confidence is the most important from the perspective of the learner. Generally speaking, we as humans tend to dismiss the validity and breadth of our own experience. As our best and often worst critics, we also undervalue our skills. Because of this fatal human flaw, it takes a lot of effort for a learner to build their confidence.

It’s important to remember that our natural tendencies to be biased toward a negative view of ourselves is not our fault. It is all based in our biology. When our survival system perceives a threat to safety or well-being, such as a challenging work assignment, it sends warning signals, usually in the form of fear or anxiety. It perceives the work assignment as a threat—meaning if we do not complete it successfully, our job will be in jeopardy.

If we are unable to manage those thoughts and feelings with confident self-assurance, we do not embrace the work assignment and underperform—despite our ability and experience. We have no control over the thoughts and feelings that come from this survival system. However, we can manage those thoughts and feelings as they enter our consciousness.

Confidence enables us to manage these thoughts and feelings as they surface. Learners who have this confidence will have greater success in their lives and in their work. With confidence, they are able to more effectively and efficiently use their ability and experience to propel themselves forward, rather than succumb to their own self-doubt.

COMPETENCY FROM THE LEADERS PERSPECTIVE

For you, as the leader, ability is the variable that you can influence the most, and the easiest. You can actively help others gain skills by providing mentoring, training, and education. It's not that you have zero influence on experience or confidence, but you have significantly more influence over ability.

Leaders value competency for good reasons. In a ten year study conducted by the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), the number one contributor to employee satisfaction was the capacity to use skills and abilities. In other words, an employee’s ability to be competent at what they do is what made them happy in their work. Not only does competence produce tremendous motivation, it also creates high satisfaction. It is a double win for both the leader and the learner.

 

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One Simple Step to a Culture Of Innovation Mike Rayburn

By Mike Rayburn | Aug 23, 2021 | Comments Off

"Did you know, there are companies who actually pay their people for making mistakes and coming forth with them?"

Every one of my clients wants to grow their innovation, creativity, and performance.

They want their people to experiment; try things; create new products, processes, and services; implement radical problem solving; and to create change.

So, I get a unique view across a lot of different sectors at what works and what doesn’t.

The number one way organizations stifle any creative thought:

Punishing mistakes.

You want to KILL any hope of innovation and individual brilliance?

Punish mistakes.

Make people wrong for trying and coming up short.

And do not fool yourself.

Many, many organizations tell themselves they allow people to make mistakes and all the while have a covert, tacit punishment of mistakes.

Or, they have individual leaders who act out their own ego deficiencies by making others wrong for trying and failing.

This matters. This is toxic.

So, you need to find out.

And what’s the solution? How do you build a culture of innovation?

Give everyone in your organization…

the Freedom to Be Wrong.

The freedom to fail, fall short, to screw up.

Essentially, we’re talking about offering Grace, a culture where it’s safe to be vulnerable.

Brene Brown says vulnerability is the foundation of all creativity and innovation.
Now, before you get all shaky, we are not “skipping through the forest,” here.

It’s simply encouraging your people to try boldly, and offering a soft landing when people fail… which they will!

Did you know, there are companies who actually pay their people for making mistakes and coming forth with them

Radical? Sure. And what do they get for it?

A Culture of Innovation.

(Not to mention a fun place to work, eh?).

So, start to grow your culture of innovation by giving everyone...

The Freedom To Be Wrong.

 

Mike-Rayburn-Keynote-Speaker

Are You in Your Customer’s Top 5 by Vinh Giang

By Vinh Giang | Aug 18, 2021 | Comments Off

You are the direct reflection of the top 5 people you spend time with.
This means you are in your customer's top 5 as well.

Magicians have to learn linguistic and visual influence techniques to be able to entertain and astonish people on stage. Vinh Giang, both magician and influential keynote speaker, unpacks how he uses magic to illustrate the power of influence, which has two benefits: empowerment and inspiration to others, including your customers and clients.

Vinh shares a powerful lesson about the power of influence in a magic demonstration he often uses with his audience, both in-person and virtually. He gives a coin to a person and then asks them to decide which hand to place the coin in. The first time he says, put the coin in the hand that feels right and leave the hand that’s left empty. He repeats this for three more times with the person, all the while providing subtle and hilarious cues to suggest which hand to put the coin in. Each time the person puts the coin in the suggested hand and each time Vinh guesses accurately.

Vinh goes on to explain that the reason why he demonstrates this lesson to his audience, in-person and virtually, is simply to highlight that you are the direct reflection of the top 5 people you spend time with. This means you are in your customer’s top 5 as well. Why does this empower you? Because that means you can decide who you will become in the future by deciding who you spend time with right now. As you improve and become more inspired, you will inspire and bring more value to your customers lives as well.

What skills and what attributes do you need to possess right now to get you to the future you want to be at? For example, if you wanted to improve being a top performer in your company, you could connect and bring into your top 5 someone who is a top performer. Bring someone who has the skill or attribute into your top 5 and you can slowly craft yourself into the leader you want to become.

Nothing happens until something moves — Einstein

 

The Four Steps to a Successful Hybrid Event by cmi

By cmiadmin | Aug 16, 2021 | Comments Off

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Almost 50% of Corporate Event Attendees Consider Hybrid Events the Ideal Format for the Future

Since 2020, the event industry migrated from in-person events to virtual events — speakers, event planners and companies had to scramble to adapt and pivot towards the adoption of better technology solutions to connect and interact with an online audience. Since 2021, in-person events began to shift back towards in-person events, with people expecting that the world might “normalize” and go back to way it was before. However, with the global COVID-19 pandemic experiencing a recent resurgence due to the Delta variant, the new normal means there will continue to be people who are reluctant, or are unable, to attend in-person events.

Almost 50% of corporate event attendees consider hybrid events the ideal format for the future, compared to exclusively in-person or virtual-only events, according to Metrigy Research. Businesses are embracing this new reality. In 2021, 64% of businesses say they’re increasing their virtual events, and 58% say they’re planning for a mix of virtual and in-person events.

To better meet everyone’s needs, the hybrid event model has become a very popular solution and is definitely here to stay.
But first, you must understand what a hybrid event is, and what it is not.

WHAT IS A HYBRID EVENT?
A hybrid event is a meeting or event with at least one group of
in-person participants connecting with remote participants in one or more different locations.

WHAT A HYBRID EVENT IS NOT
• A live streamed in-person event
• A live event with on-demand content
• An in-person event with a virtual add-on

Is a hybrid event right for you? Take a look at your audience needs and your objectives to make that determination. A hybrid event is highly personalized for both in-person and virtual audiences and is designed to drive action and exploration.

STEP 1: PREPARING FOR YOUR HYBRID EVENT

Determine your hybrid event configuration

  • What hybrid configuration will you use and what level of communication will there be – see some examples below:
    • Live main event + virtual participants
    • Live main event + 1-way pod
    • Studio + 2-way pods
Pod Definition: A pod is a remote group of people attending an event online, but still gathering in-person.
1-way=1-way broadcast stream
2-way=real time 2-way communication

Know your event goals and objectives
  • Determine the needs of your online group(s)
  • What do you hope to achieve from an online component?
      • How will you measure your online effectiveness?
  • Determine how to effectively engage your audience
    • Think like a TV producer – how can you engage your online participants and create an exclusive experience
    • Consider a host or emcee to facilitate communications with your remote attendees

STEP 2: DESIGNING YOUR HYBRID EXPERIENCE

Plan & Design your hybrid experience

  • Determine how the in-person speaker or (or remote) will address the online audience and work in moments of engagement
  • Speakers need to be careful not to walk or pace on stage. The camera movement can cause motion sickness for remote viewers
  • Have extra rehearsals to prepare for extra latency or “lag” time for online or video connections
  • If you poll your online audience about a topic, there may some space and time required to get answers back. Prepare for this by sharing a funny story or anecdote to your in-person audience before checking in with the online participants

STEP 3: TECHNOLOGY FOR HYBRID EVENTS

Determine what technology you will use
  • Ensure you have proper cameras, microphones, lighting
  • Incorporate stage lighting so speakers look their best to online viewers
  • Ensure the data flow between a powerful laptop, desktop computer or stand-alone piece of hardware
  • Get a reliable streaming provider
  • Have your digital venue setup and ready – this is where the online attendees will login to watch and interact with the event
  • Ensure minimum requirements for the online event and communicate a backup plan for them, just in case
  • Provide dedicated support staff or facilitator/emcee
  • It is most effective to have hard-wired internet connection
  • Test, Test, Test
  • Ensure a backup plan if technology fails

STEP 4: VENUES & BUDGETING

Venues
  • Choose your in-person venue carefully – make sure it has room for clear, unrestricted camera angles
    • Tip #1: Never stream on wi-fi; use hard-wired internet
    • Tip#2: Consider using a riser for the speaker to be raised up slightly so that cameras can get a clear angle
  • Determine your online platform that has features such as Q&A, chat, live polling, online agendas, etc.

Online Budgeting Considerations
  • Be wary of “Free.” Functionality may be limited and they may sell your attendee’s data to other marketers
  • Expensive doesn’t always mean better. Look for quality platforms that have a good record of customer services and high ratings
  • Factor in the costs of hard-wired internet
  • Quality microphone, lighting and camera kits can be built for less than the price of some table centerpieces at events
  • Provide staffing for your online event, with at least one person dedicated to monitoring the remote user experience
  • Determine which platforms serve your goals and objectives better

Although there are some challenges to a hybrid event model, this is an incredible way to offer global reach to people who otherwise might not attend, create partnerships and even drive traffic to your in-person event. Offer a combination of creative in-person media, virtual reality and on-demand content and your next hybrid event is sure to be a success!