Sessions & Work Shop Descriptions

MARCH 28 - The Business of Events Forum

The education on March 28th is designed to bring together people who plan live experiences for a day of intense, interactive and inspiring education. The creatively designed schedule includes a series of hands on workshops, powerful classes, lighthearted moments and mentor led dialogues on the most important and relevant issues facing event planners today.


8:45 a.m. - 9:45 a.m.  Play For Creativity



The opening session of CSE Live offers a dynamic introduction into the power of play and fundamentals of improvisation to tap your deep well of creativity. Research explains how play shapes our brains, inspires creativity and creates competence and that in this fast paced, digital economy, creativity is crucial to gaining that strategic advantage. This class helps you open up to the process of learning over the next two days and will provide powerful take aways that will help you bring out the creative in your teams.


Learning Objectives:


● Develop creativity search tools

● Encourage collaboration and team-work in your staff

● Hone your leadership skills

● Create an understanding of team dynamics to improve communication


9:55 a.m. - 10:25 a.m.  Money Talks: The Art of Vendor Negotiation


Your agreements, understandings, and relationships with your vendors are key to striking a solid deal with any event service provider. From identifying efficiencies to seizing key moments to build greater value for both parties, this session will pave the way to long-lasting relationships that will bring you and your clients exclusive pricing and savings other planners could only dream of.


In this session you will learn how to negotiate like a pro with strong agreements that satisfy everyone at the table, including your client. Expect to participate and learn through firsthand experience as you engage in negotiation dialogues and role-playing.


Learning Objectives:


● Set and achieve your negotiation targets

● Identify common mistakes best avoided in negotiations

● Learn how to spot traps, maneuver around selling tricks and use your buyer’s leverage

● Develop the inner negotiation guru in you


10:45 a.m. - 11:15 a.m.     The Marriage of VR (Virtual Reality) & Events


The event industry has gone through a lot of change in the last ten years but nothing has had or will likely ever have as big an impact on how we provide experiences to our guests like the introduction of VR to the event game. VR is the ability to transport a guest into a different world,  in an instant. This session will discuss the impact VR will have; how it is going to revolutionize the way you design, implement and sell your events and the many uses and opportunities that exist for planners and vendors to adopt this as a strategy in the years ahead.


11:15 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.  Event Wars - Extreme Production Challenge



Have you ever worked on a huge event where there was more chaos than control? Large scale events have many moving parts and pieces that take layers of planning and logistics in order to orchestrate successfully. Planning it out, and pulling it together is one thing, but ensuring it is seamless, effective and a positive experience for your vendors is another level of expertise entirely. You may be getting your doors open on time but are you winning the event war when it comes to creating a stress free process? What are the keys to making it all work and how do you ensure that multiple vendors are on the same page and can come together to execute the vision on time and on budget?


ILEA Toronto and their team of creative event professionals (aka Event Super Heroes) are going to put your skills to the test to see how your planning process stands up against a detailed vision, a tight timeline and an obstacle course of “unplanned hiccups”.


This fun and interactive session will give you powerful insight into how creating a strong team of event partners and establishing clear lines of communication can help anticipate challenges, solve problems, and save money. Get ready for EVENT WARS!


12:30 p.m. - 1:20 p.m.  Food is a Universal Language Luncheon


In the revitalized area called Regent Park, there is a culinary explosion taking place, where food from all over the world is being used to create communities, to unite people in common causes and to build sustainable . Have you ever worked on a huge event where there was more chaos than control? Large scale events have many moving parts and pieces that take layers of pla


1:30 p.m. - 2:20 p.m.  What Would Vogue Do? An Interactive Concept Building Exercise



This hands on, action packed session explores how FASHION Inspires event trends on all levels and its impact on what we design, how we design, what we are attracted to and what it means for our event concepts. Join international award winning event designers of some of the highest profile events in Canada, from TIFF to the Junos for this refreshing class and learn first hand what is paving the way for on-trend event design in 2017 and beyond!


Learning Objectives:


• Learn how to turn abstract inspiration into innovation

• Translating out of industry trends into the event world

• Highlight top Fashion trends for 2017

• Collaborative and insightful event design


2:30 p.m. - 3:20 p.m.  Should I Do That? Digging Deep Into the Ethics in Events



In this facilitated dialogue, we will explore the grey issues we face as professionals in the events industry and how to approach them. We'll explore topics including intellectual property, supplier selection, transparency, and other important topics.


Learning Objectives:


• Learn about a framework for approaching ethical dilemmas

• Understand the impact of perceived or actual unethical behaviour on your reputation, career and brand

• Understand the role of rationalizations in decision making


Yoga/ Guided Meditation Break


4:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.  Closing Session - Life Is a Special Event



Are you living the life you want? It’s live…and it’s happening right now; your LIFE is a Special Event. In this profession, event planners get to dream big. Imagining endless possibilities, creating experiences of joy, happiness, fun and adventure – but are you doing this planning for your own  life?


In this POWERFUL and moving hour, renowned planner and author Carol Moxam, CSEP asks you to dig deep and explore the areas of your life that can be celebrated every day. She shares how she took her vast experience and principles and applied them into the planning of her own life which has skyrocket her success and allowed her to live everyday like it's an event.


5:00 p.m.    Wrap Up and Shuttle to Opening Night Party

MARCH 29 - The Event Plan Workshop

8:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. The Event Plan Workshop



Get ready to take a deep dive into the key fundamentals of planning successful events with multiple-award winning Producer Carolyn Luscombe, CSEM, CSEP, CMP. This workshop on the ABC’s of developing and managing a successful event will equip you with tools and strategies required to produce affordable, successful and seamless events. Whether it is a festival, fundraiser, conference or gala, the building blocks to success are the same.




• Develop a winning strategy

• Create a framework and critical path

• Build an effective event team

• Find, negotiate and work with suppliers

• Manage event documents

• Understand risk management and legalities

• Work with technical suppliers

• Plan for event day contingencies

• Write a complete ‘Project Closure Statement’




• Entry-level planners and coordinators

• Administrators planning events as part of their role

• Fundraisers Executives

• Hotel Catering & Event Teams

• Association Executives

• Wedding & Social Planners

• Anyone who regularly plans events


8:30 a.m. - 9:00 a.m  Huge Impact on a Small Budget – Keys to Maximizing Your Spend



When you realize that you have so many elements to book and your budget is limited, how do you execute the event? Join Walter Galvao in his returning hit session on effective event budget management. Receive useful tips and tricks to booking elements on a small budget gained from 23 years of working in the event industry. Walter will share personal experiences as well as his trials and tribulations that he overcame to be successful in the event biz.




1. Tools to reducing event costs

2. Keys to negotiating with suppliers

3. Ways to get more from your venue

4. Design tips to add flare at a low fare



8:30 a.m. - 9:00 a.m.  You're NOT Too Busy to Add a Little Tech to Your Life



Ask any moderately successful planner how they are doing and you are guaranteed that the answer will contain either the word “busy”, “swamped” or “crazy”.  In fact when asked about adding some technology to help them get less busy, most planners will reply that they have no time for the learning curve. That is about to change. Take 30 minutes to attend this session and learn simple ways to upgrade your processes, tools, and personal skill set in order to stay competitive as an event professional.


9:10 a.m. - 9:40 a.m.    Eye On Design


They say a picture is worth a thousand words, we say an event’s design is worth a million. Storytelling is the cornerstone of every great event, but harnessing their true potential is often overlooked in the planning phase. Good and consistent visual storytelling has the ability to leave a strong lasting impression on your guests; influencing how they perceive and interact with your client’s brand after the event.


In this session, we explore the key elements used to build powerful events and the tools needed to intrigue, engage and connect emotionally with your audience. Learn how to harness the power of storytelling through dynamic visuals, combining the use of new digital media and tech with traditional decor. From selecting the right venue to deciding on the final decor touches to your event, you will walk away knowing how to share your client’s story and messaging effectively through your event’s design.


9:10 a.m. - 9:40 a.m.    The Future is the Experience, NOT Marketing



Want to know how to get your market to notice you, line up to buy you, pay more for you and help to create an army of evangelists who sell you, for free? Hint: it’s not more marketing.


About every 6 seconds that we’re awake we’re exposed to a marketing message. That’s almost 10,000 messages each and every day. And the noise is only getting louder with every passing year. Each time you create a Facebook post, ad, event or any other piece of marketing communication, you’re adding to the racket. Rather than pay to try to get people to notice you, why not invest that money in creating experiences that will turn your customers and attendees into voluntary salespeople? After all, we believe what other people like us have to say about businesses more than we’ll ever believe what a business has to say about themselves.


In this session, Lara McCulloch will walk you through how to create your own customer / attendee experience journey using tools she’s honed over 20 years of working with some of the best brands in the world.


9:50 a.m. - 10:40 a.m.   KEYNOTE - The Trendsetters - NXT Trends From The Event Influencers 2017



Do you have an insatiable curiosity for what is trending for 2017?  Then THIS is your MUST Attend session.

Go behind the scenes with trendsetters, Janice Cardinale The Idea Hunter; Peter Carruthers, Commercial Director for the Aga Khan Museum and Stefani Dunn, Chief Creative officer for Decor & More Inc and be inspired by colour, fashion and popular trends & concepts in Design, Food and Entertaining ideas. Let us build the framework for your next event.


10:50 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.   Boycott the Hustle



The word Hustle seems to be on everyone’s lips. It’s hard to go a day without hearing an entrepreneur boast about their hustle or an influencer question whether you’ve got it. It seems that if you lack it success will always remain out of your reach.


Lara McCulloch don’t buy this. And for good reason…


In this session, she’ll share her very raw story about how hustling to the top actually made her hit rock bottom and how she redesigned her life by redefining success. She will give you her greatest lessons and tools that were the key to building a lucrative lifestyle business, working part-time hours, requiring only 2-4 clients per year and never spending a dime on marketing.


10:50 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.  The Millennial Mindset Panel



Is there really a generation gap? What does it mean and do you really have to change the way you communicate when you are working with “Millennials”? There is a lot of talk about it and we hear this buzzword in the press everyday. Let’s get to the bottom of it by going straight to the source. This panel features four amazing “millennials” all leading successful event businesses. We are going to turn the tables and let them tell you what the next generation of clients (them) wants, needs and values in their important business relationships.


11:40 a.m. - 12:20 p.m.    KEYNOTE - Why Event Branding Matters



A live experience is a person’s interaction with a defined set of measurables and tacticals that combined, create a sensory reaction. What does all that fancy talk mean in English? It means that live events are experiences people feel, touch, taste, see and hear. Event branding is a way for the planner and designers (décor and graphic) to collaborate in an effort to create a cohesive and seamless integration of the brand message and the experience. Why does it matter?  Because if executed well, event branding has the power to elevate businesses to a new level and completely control how consumers or guests react to its message. This in-depth session will explore the concepts of cohesion and how to create powerful event branding that results in high impact event experiences.


1:45 p.m. - 2:30 p.m.    KEYNOTE - The Formula for Success.
Stacy Wyatt, Corey Mandell, Debbie Vanderbeek, Hala Bisadda, Jocelyn Flanagan, Chad Brincheski


Join these globally recognized event industry leaders as they share their views on the future of events, secrets to success and what it took to create and maintain successful brands in the event industry for over two decades.


3:30 p.m. Design Dilemmas - Located in the Decor & More Promenade Lounge on the show floor.

KERI MILLER, CSEP, Greg Bell, Nicolas-Olivier Caron, Sébastien David & Stefani Dunn


Bring your most pressing design questions and get ready to share in this light and inspirational session bursting with creative ideas. Is your annual event getting stale? Has your budget been cut? Are the ceilings too low?  Do you have a 2 hour set-up for a 6 figure budget? or is the room all black and red and your client wants a soft neutral palette event?  Whatever your dilemmas, challenges, or downright problems, bring them along to this unique workshop presented by some of the most influential industry professionals, who will answer your questions in a round table “speed dating” style format. When we say ‘Design Dilemas’ we are not talking specifically about decor or the look of the room, but the overall design of the event.  Each of our speakers has a unique perspective and speciality they bring to the discussion and they will help solve your specific challenges.


Move through the various tables and leave with great ideas and solutions for your next event. As well as set questions, bring along your own issues and get years worth of high profile experience at your fingertips in helping you solve your most pressing issues.


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