How To TEDx: The Speaker Matrix

Experienced TEDx organisers will tell you to tailor your management style to each of your speakers.  The problem is, speakers come in all shapes and sizes and knowing what approach to take can be a real challenge, especially if you are a first time event organiser.

I’ve created a matrix that splits speakers into four quadrants based on their personality type and the tone of their talk.  While each quadrant requires a different strategy, the reality is everyone has levels of each style.  Use the matrix to work out which quadrant most suits each speaker and then check out The 4 Types of TEDx Speaker article for more information on what each style means.

GradLifeLondon How To TEDx Alex Merry

This blog is part of the How to TEDx Series.  If you enjoyed it – please like it, share it and comment below!

How To TEDx: An Introduction

Organising a TEDx event is one of the most challenging and rewarding things I have ever done. The last 12 months has taught me more than I could have possibly imagined.  We got a lot right in our first event, but we had to learn many lessons the hard way and some of those could have been avoided. TED provide organisers with little more than skeleton instructions and I am yet to find an easy to use content source for running an event.

Over the next few months, I will be writing a ‘How to TEDx’ series to bridge this gap.  With just one event under my belt I don’t claim to be an expert, but by documenting the lessons I’ve learned, hopefully organising a conference can become a little easier.  Along the way, I will be inviting other organisers to share their advice in guest posts with the goal of creating the most comprehensive guide to running a TEDx conference out there.

If you would like to feature as a guest blogger – fill out the form below!

My TEDxVision: One Year On

It’s almost been a year since the plans for TEDxClapham were first announced.  Now, just days after the final talk was released, it seems like a good time reflect on what has been achieved.

The Goal
To host a 1-day TEDx conference for 100 attendees that set out to:
1.  Prove that TED/TEDx talks can help to create tangible change
2.  Show that there is more to Clapham than it’s infamous night life
3.  100,000 video views in 12 months
4.  3 talks to make it to TEDx Editors Picks
5.  1 talk to make it to TED Editors Picks

The Numbers
Speakers: 17
Ticket applications: 300+
Attendees: 100
Video views: 120,000+ (First talk released 5 weeks ago)
Hours pledged to Clapham based charity organisations: 420
Talks that made it to the TEDx Monthly Editors Picks: 1 (so far)
Talks that made it to the TED Editors Picks: 0 (so far)

The Talks

JC Movember TEDxClapham GradLifeLondon

Click here for the TEDxClapham 2015 Playlist

Conclusion
Pretty good overall – everything we can control we have achieved. As for making it to the TED and TEDx Editor’s Picks, well that’s in the hands of the TED Gods in New York –  keep your fingers crossed! Ultimately, the true success of our event boils down to one question:

Can TEDx talks create tangible change?

After all, that seems to be the sticking point for TED’s critics.  I think this event has shown two things:
1.  Mix like-minded people with opportunity and you have are providing the perfect environment to create change.  420 hours pledged in 90 minutes by our audience isn’t bad!
2.  The most inspiring TEDx talks haven’t been written to inspire others but to challenge perception and issue a call to action.  Comedian, Dave Chawner’s talk on eating disorders is a great example of this.

Every talk should have a greater purpose and if TEDx organisers can keep this in mind when choosing their speakers, change has a really good chance!  Edwina Thompson used her talk to help influence key decision-makers in several European governments, NATO and Interpol prior to face to face meetings, it’s no wonder TEDx picked it up so quickly.

I’m yet to see or hear of a TED or TEDx event that has been solely responsible for creating change, but I do believe that running or speaking at an event can provide a powerful platform a) for change to be showcased and b) to aid positive change globally.

What about TEDxClapham 2016?
We’ve been overwhelmed by the support that TEDxClapham has received since it’s inception.  Our post-event reach on social media has exceeded 1.5 million and that will continue to grow with time.  The team is currently enjoying some well deserved r&r, but we are already in the early stages of planning next year’s event.  If you’re interested in being part of next year’s team, fill out this form and I’ll be in touch soon.

What to expect?  Think spring time, new theme, new format, new speakers and lots of surprises.  It’s likely to be a similar size to this year, so if you’re interested in applying for a ticket you’ll need to get in quick. Be sure to follow us on Twitter to get first movers advantage; if last year was anything to go by, they’ll sell out quickly!

For us, the most important thing is to make sure TEDxClapham 2016 is an event that’s like no other.  London plays host to some astonishing events in and outside of TEDx and we are going to have our work cut out to make it our most special event yet.  For now though, on behalf of the TEDxClapham team, I’d like to say a huge thank you to everyone who has helped us along the way, I hope we’ve done you proud.

Alex Merry

TEDxClapham – Who wants in?

One of the main reasons for writing the ‘TED Talks of Tomorrow‘ article is because I want to run a TEDx event that will make a lasting impact on the community and inspire those all lucky enough to be in the audience.  To be able to persuade just one of those figures to speak at the conference would be impressive.  However, if I can put together the right team, I truly believe we could create one of the best TEDx events that London has ever seen.

So, the journey has begun to create TEDxClapham; after all where better to have the event than the hub of graduate life?   Those that join the team will have the chance to meet with some of London’s future influencers, add several new strings to their bow and be a part of something that’s reach could easily exceed London.  There is no doubt that it’s going to be a journey full of highs and lows, a phenomenal learning experience and most importantly a lot of fun.

There has already been lots of interest, and unfortunately there is a limited number of places available, but in the spirit of TED, the opportunity is open to everyone.  Those wishing to get involved must dream big, have unwavering commitment and relish a challenge. If this is you, fill out the form below and I will be in touch with the next step within a week.

Aimee Bateman – TED Talks of Tomorrow

Aimee Bateman gradlifelondon.com

Aimee plunged herself into the world of careers from the moment she graduated; initially excelling in recruitment and now as the founder of one of the most respected career advisory companies in the UK – Careercake.com.  Her simple take on how to do what you love is brilliant; which is probably why she has been inundated with awards over the last 18 months.  Aimee has been on BBC television on several occasions and her careers advice has been featured across the UK’s national press.  She is one to watch out for in the future and she needs to get on that TED stage!

My search for the founders of TEDxClapham is underway – Make sure you click on the link to see how you can become part of the team!

Lucie Green – TED Talks of Tomorrow

Lucie Green banner gradlifelondon.com

As well as being one of the world’s leading experts on solar physics, Lucie is heavily involved in engaging with the public through science making her the perfect choice for any TED event.  She is part of the team preparing for the launch of the European Space Agency’s Solar Orbiter programme, which is sending a satellite out into space to conduct some pioneering studies on the Sun’s relationship with Earth. Lucie’s not a stranger to the big stage either, having featured on several BBC astronomy programmes.

My search for the founders of TEDxClapham is under way – Make sure you click on the link to see how you can become part of the team!

Guy Watts – TED Talks of Tomorrow

Guy Watts Banner gradlifelondon.com

In 2009, Guy broke two world records as part of the first and fasted pair to row unassisted, land to land, across the Indian Ocean.  On his return, he co-founded the award winning social enterprise Streetscape, which offers long-term unemployed youths apprenticeships in landscape gardening. These achievements resulted in him being selected as one of London 2012’s Olympic torch bearers and deservedly so.  Guy has an incredibly clear vision as to what the future holds for social enterprises and it would certainly be a talk to remember.

My search for the founders of TEDxClapham is under way – Make sure you click on the link to see how you can become part of the team!