Diversity. We hear about it all the time, in news, in schools, in business, in nations. Believe it or not, diversity becomes important when we talk about events too.
One of the recent posts on Event Manager Blog delved into this issue. Event Manager Blog is an excellent blog covering all things event. Its discussion topics include hospitality, inspiration, planning, social media, and technology. Its editor, Julius Solaris, created the Event Manager Blog in April 2007. Solaris is a social media and events enthusiast.
His post, “How to Ensure Speakers Diversity at your Conference,” was a great piece on the misrepresentation of diversity among conference speakers.
I recently attended the OpEd Seminar, a seminar focusing on the dismal female representation within op-ed pieces in major newspapers, and Solaris’s piece on diversity really stuck with me. Solaris has attended dozens of conferences and notes that there is a serious under-representation of female speakers at these conferences. He notes that although the technology industry (the kinds of conferences he usually attends) is dominated by men, the intuitive reasoning to then only have male speakers wards off change within the industry.
To combat this seemingly commonplace issue, Aanand Prasad created a diversity calculator to calculate the fair representation of a given gender that should be present during an event. The calculator determines these figures according to the audience diversity. Pushing boundaries by bringing in female speakers to a male-dominated event will lead to change within this industry as well as many other industries.
Whether you work with events that deal with corporate speakers or not, it is always great to bring in speakers that have a different point of view. It really doesn’t matter if someone is male or female; if they are the people chosen to present at a conference, then what they have to say is probably noteworthy. All corporate and business conferences should switch up the type of speakers they have from year to year. In the end, who doesn’t love a little extra something to spice up your event!