172: MMM - On How to Create a Spectacular Event, with Todd Hansen and Sarah Gillund


How do you create a truly spectacular event? If you speak at events - or pull together events - or attend events! - then you know that HOW an event comes together is really important. And it's way more complicated than most people think...

I'm currently in Milwaukee doing a fundraising event with an awesome team of people who have consistently created and produced some of the most beautiful, stunning and powerful events I've ever had the privilege of being a part of.

And so I've invited these 'all-star' event people into the conversation with me today about how to pull off a spectacular event program!

Meet: Todd Hansen - producer and performer - who knows the ins and outs of doing this work well. And Sarah Gillund, communications guru - who oversees the consistent and beautiful messages that the audience experiences from the first moment to the last.

(We're not talking table centerpieces. Just not my expertise, and I happily hand off front-of-house stuff to someone else) as much as we're talking about what happens 'on stage.')

A good event can inspire action; and a bad one can do the opposite.

So - here are nine ingredients of a spectacular event!


Todd's three ingredients:

1) Excellent and well-planned pre-production.

2) Strong beginnings, transitions and endings.

3) Variety of content and experiences for your audience.


Sarah's three ingredients: 

1) Consistency - in design and messaging.

2) Be willing to kill your darlings.

3) Utilizing people's strengths.


Sally's three ingredients: 

1) WOW talent.

2) Creating the needed TIME (it's more than you think).

3) Loose grip on a tight program!