Speakers & Entertainment

  • Risk management and alcohol responsibility: Getting guests home safely

    Keys to Us has been around since 1996, and I just discovered it! What took me so long? Here’s the deal: You are pretty sure you will have too much alcohol when you head out for the evening. Give them a call, a time, a location, and they will pick you up. Not only that, they drive you home in your car. There is a Keys to Us car following so that the driver of your car can get back…

  • Speaker preparation for event organizers: Three ways to ensure an effective message

    Nothing happens until someone says something There is a longstanding rule in business, “Nothing happens until somebody sells something.” In creating special events, there should be a similar rule, “Nothing happens until someone says something.” There is a lot of work that goes into creating a successful event from stage design, to guest lists, to menus, to audio-video setups. Yet at the heart of any event is the need to say something that is relevant to the audience, important to…

  • The modern art of hiring a speaker

    By Bob Parker The human element of meetings has not changed since early homo sapiens first mind-mapped his ideas on cave walls for the lack of a flip chart or Powerpoint: to connect people and share ideas. That first ever talk on the cave-circuit was likely titled: Hunt This – The Key to Effective Survival. The cave meeting planner ensured that the lighting and venue were adequate to communicate the message. For all we know, fire was invented by a…

  • Six steps for successfully booking live entertainment

    As an event planner, coordinator, designer or consultant, you come across challenges that are very unique. These types of challenges often fall outside your realm of expertise. Clients expect you to control and execute all areas of the event, at the same time. Accomplishing this can be a very daunting task, especially when it comes to areas which are entirely concept-based. Live entertainment is often one of these challenges. To assist you, here are six steps which will ensure success…

  • Planning is for the people: Why safety and enjoyment are paramount

    If we believe that as meeting and event professionals our number one responsibility is the people who participate in our meetings, then we need to look at what this means. We are responsible for their safety, their enjoyment, their learning, and their overall experience, each with their own importance, and our own role in the same must be understood. With the ongoing tragedies that happen at events, it is critical that safety is always top of mind. Understanding there are…

  • The critical shift: How to transition from dinner to dancing at your evening event

    A critical part of an evening event is shifting the mood from dinner to dancing. This shift is often not as simple as it may sound and takes a lot more than just clearing the plates and moving around a few chairs. Have the DJ ready to pump up the music, but it is also important to consider the other atmospheric qualities of the room. The lighting of the room and the utilization of any production items that the DJ…

  • Top meeting mistakes: Five items you may be forgetting

    Frantic as CMPs and corporate meeting specialists often find themselves planning engaging programs and plotting event logistics, it’s all too easy to overlook simple value-adds that can radically enhance any gathering’s impact. But if properly leveraged, these cost-affordable and easily-implemented initiatives can help maximize attendance, boost audience learning and takeaway, and dramatically improve return on investment. Following are several ways to get more from your conferences and executive summits, none of which require huge added expenditures, yet all of which…

  • Hiring a band or a DJ? Considering entertainment options for your next event

    Clients are constantly asking my team and I what the best way is to assure that their event is a huge success as they debate between having a band or a DJ. Often the decision comes down to budget, as a full band can cost over $8,000 and a DJ usually ranges from $1,000 to $2,500. As an event producer, it is important to listen to your client and identify their true desires for the event. This will help you…

  • Why gamification will amaze at your next meeting or event

    Plato said that we learn more about a person in an hour of play than in a lifetime of conversation. If you believe there is inherent value in this statement, then you are possibly already including game mechanics in your meeting planning. If you understand the opposite of play is not work, but the opposite of play is depression, then you will begin to understand the importance of including gamification in your meetings. As human beings, we want to feel challenged;…

  • Tell us a story: Three questions to ask when choosing your next speaker

    Selecting the right speaker for your event will mean the difference between making a lasting impression and making no impression. While the appreciation for one speaker over the other often has much to do with one’s personal style and taste, there are some critical key factors in picking the right kind of speaker for your event. People have a multitude of options for events they can attend in their professional field or personal lifestyle hobbies. When selecting a speaker for…

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