by Adrian Segar

Some testimonials about Adrian Segar’s conferences, facilitation, designs, and writing provided by participants, clients, and fans over the last 13 years:

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To be honest, for the most part, I’ve stopped going to conferences that do not pay their speakers. Sorry, if you don’t feel your content is worth paying for, neither do I. (Last bit does not apply to Adrian Segar conferences. I would not hesitate to pay to go to anything that Adrian has designed and facilitates)

The majority of conference attendees voted to have a hybrid traditional/peer conference again next year. I think our peer sessions might have been rated higher overall than our pre-planned sessions! It was a great experience and I look forward to making improvements for next year.

— Becca Davis, Executive Director, ReFrame Association

I had such a great experience stretching my technical legs at [edACCESS] last year – if you’re a sysadmin or other technical staff that feels a bit lost at NEIT…try edAccess. It’ll scratch that itch. Really great stuff. Like K-12 Sysadmin Camp. Also gets an award for most/best/most thoughtfully organized conference I think I’ve ever been to.

— Jennifer Davenport, Nov 6, 2017 NYCIST post

I thought the small group settings where we received feedback about our challenges and concerns was really helpful. It gave me a new perspective on my challenges so that I can move through them.

— Solution Room participant

Big influences on me at the time were WordPress’s WordCamps, which are also community/peer driven events, and Adrian Segar, who wrote the book on peer conferences: Conferences That Work.

What a cool workshop it was, with this craftsman from the USA. Much learned about interactive meetings, thanks to @ASegar.

— Tweet by @DagvoorzitterNL about the February 14, 2019 Participate! workshop for Dutch professional moderators

I realized this morning that your event content is the only event related “stuff” I still read. I think that’s because it’s not about events, but about the coming together of people to exchange ideas and learn from one another and that’s valuable information for anyone.

“Conferences That Work,” is the most useful, thought-provoking, thorough thing I’ve read all year. Highly recommended for anyone out there who shares my undoubtedly crazy desire to host events. Thank you, Mr. Segar!

Adrian Segar is a truly prolific writer with over 30 years of experience in designing and facilitating productive conferences. His blog offers lots of invaluable posts about conference design, facilitation and peer conferences. If your sessions lack participation or excitement, this is exactly where you should look for advice.

I have only just discovered your work but it is amazing.

— Helen Bevan, Chief Transformation Officer, National Health Service, England

Adrian Segar asks attendees: “If this conference could be amazing for you, what would it be about?” Then, he builds a program around those topics.

— JT Long, Content Chief at Smart Meetings

Adrian Segar has broken new ground when it comes to innovative conference formats that reliably build highly interactive, crowdsourced, participant-led events.

This episode … talks about how we got started with the support of of our idol, Adrian Segar and how we’ve grown Haute Dokimazo into what it is today.

I ran The Solution Room at an event of 60 people last week, and it went swimmingly. They loved it. Great to close an event and send people off – with their problem-and-solution paper cutouts – on a constructive note at the end of the event.

— Bruno Selun, IAF-Certified Professional Facilitator at kumquat.eu

[Adrian’s] reflective blog contains everything from a short meditation on dinner seating layout, to a dialog on helping to bridge divides between people. Adrian’s site isn’t just another event planning blog, it’s about people coming together to exchange knowledge and learn from one another.

Which is what the best events do.

Thank you for always thinking outside the box. You continually challenge me.

Adrian is an icon in our business. He has given us the tools to help us become better collaboration artists.

— David Adler, on stage at BizBash Live DC, July 31, 2019

Keep up the fantastic work you do. Your blog’s a must-read.

The best professional development I ever had was a small conference in the northeast, where I got less than 4 hours sleep a night, but actually learned night and day and made friends that have lasted since #edtechchat @edACCESS [edACCESS is the oldest peer conference — founded by Adrian Segar & two colleagues in 1992.]

David and Adrian’s presentation is the best one! They are doing an amazing job on it! Love the format.

— Judy Basso, Comment on Adrian and David Adler’s conversation-style closing keynote “Leadership and Events” at Untethered2020, May 21

Better than ordinary conferences — we have made more connections with senior people in the industry. When is the next one?

— Main sponsor of three-day online conference of European finance executives

It was _their_ meeting; session topics weren’t foisted on the attendees.

— Conference stakeholder, Verbal comment during post-conference debrief

Embarrassed to say, but only today did I realise what an “Unconference” is all about & why it’s a powerful formula. Key feature: time spent where participants think most useful. V democratic. High return/minute spent. Thank you @HorizonsNHS & all who took part #Improve4Patients

“The need for connection with others is becoming increasingly important as we move to a world where people’s knowledge and expertise are a function of the networks – both face‑to‑face and online – they possess rather than the contents of their heads. If in our work lives, we are spending more time learning socially than being trained in the classroom, our meetings must provide the same relative opportunities.” — Adrian Segar, quoted in The Indian Journal of Ophthalmology, February 18, 2021

— Santosh G Honavar, Editor of The Indian Journal of Ophthalmology, “Physical or virtual? Or is there a middle path? – Reimagining medical conferences in the COVID-19 era”, Editorial, Indian Journal of Ophthalmology, February 18, 2021

To a certain extent, the unconference model answers this – people learn from those around them rather than an expensive keynote. I think there’s definitely a balance, but I’m disappointed we haven’t adapted more of that model into our larger conferences.

For everyone who is creating conferences, organising meetings or facilitating events – this book [The Power of Participation] is like a magic recipe. Lots of creative formats and techniques that spark inspiration and connect people. A book I’ve been looking for for a long time.

The depth of knowledge and experience represented by the participants and their willingness to share both makes this by far the most effective professional development experience I have ever found.

edACCESS provides peer-led sessions for everyone on your team, from Directors to Helpdesk and Academic Technology, all discussing similar issues and sharing applicable solutions that can be implemented realistically. For me, the days of being herded like sheep from one cavernous conference hall to another to be told about solutions that my institution cannot afford are over. This conference allows me and my team to visit an actual working campus and participate in real discussions with peers, all for a fraction of the cost of a big-box conference. edACCESS is inclusive, insightful, rejuvenating and by far the most immersive and effective IT conference you and your team will experience.

It’s a wonderful opportunity to network and discuss topics casually one-on-one or via a group in a manner that is more effective than via email. I’m not a fan of the term “safe space,” but the cathartic nature of this event allowed by its semi-private nature is invaluable.

Excited to be leading our 2022 Leadership summit with the amazing Adrian Segar.

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