As we trudge through the Midwestern snow and slush toward spring (Dear God, let it be so!) , speaking gigs for the spring and summer are starting to firm up. Some of these are still a little fuzzy, so I’ll update as I know more.
If you’re near one of these locations and you’d be interested in a hosting me for a presentation or a training, let me know and I’ll waive the travel expenses.
- April 28, I will be moderating a panel called “Open Data, Apps and Planning” at the American Planning Association national conference in Atlanta, GA. This session includes four amazing panelists, including the CEO of LocalData and Textizen, the director of the Decision Lab at PlaceMatters, and the Director of OpenPlans. If you want to find out what the bleeding edge of technology and public engagement in planning looks like, this will be the place for you. I’m doing this under my hat of Managing Editor of EngagingCities, and I am as eager as anyone to hear what these guys have to say.
- May 10, I will be back in Middlesboro, Kentucky for Better Block Part Deux, exploring how a small city can use a comprehensive, resilience-focused approach to community development to build a strong local economy — in a place where a strong economy has long been elusive. I had a visit with Middlesboro last fall (you can learn a little about that here and here), and I’m looking forward to seeing more good stuff take hold here.
- May 20, I will be leading a training on “Managing the Axe-Grinders” at the National Main Streets Conference in Detroit. Here’s the description of that session:
Managing a contentious public meeting requires a sophisticated set of tools to keep potential conflicts under control and to make sure that everyone gets a fair chance to speak up. It also requires knowing when to use those tools and how to do it in a way that makes all participants feel that their involvement matters. This session will explore various group management techniques used by successful facilitators to foster fair participation, lessen the likelihood of confrontational or counter-productive behavior, defuse conflict, and more. Participants will gain experience in using specific tactics through role-playing scenarios with fellow peers and colleagues.
This will be the third time I have done this session — which gets the participants out of their chairs and taking on roles like their favorite local crab and the dude who just wants to hear himself talk. And gives them ways to manage that in conventional public meetings, and ways to restructure public meetings so that you don’t need to do that! I’m looking forward to this — it’s not like Main Street people are shrinking violets anyways, so this should be something to see!
- June 2, I will be part of a brand-new Ignite concept at the IEDC Spring conference in Minneapolis. Here’s the current description
Ignite has become a fixture at IEDC’s recent conferences, but never has it been tried like this. In two separate Ignite-style panels, attendees will witness a succession of five minute, rapid-fire, get-to-the-point presentations, with time built in for speakers to answers questions on stage after they’re all done.
Ignite Presentation Sessions: The Power of Ideas: A brave new economic development idea. A twist in how people consider their roles within the profession. From new ways of thinking about impact to new functions for economic developers within their communities, these presentations are about dreaming big.
No idea what I’ve gotten myself into here, but it should be interesting!
- July 23, I’ll be giving a webinar for Lorman on strategies that local governments can use to support small businesses. That one hasn’t been formally put on the schedule yet, but I’ll let you know when it is.
- August 21, I’ll be giving a keynote for the Michigan Economic Developer’s Association Annual Meeting on Sea Changes, partnerships and streamlining. That one also hasn’t been formally announced yet, but I will let you know as soon as it is.
There’s several others floating around, so if you’re thinking about a speaker for your summer or fall events, please let me know soon. Thanks!