You have a big conference, or maybe you have a presentation to a small group, and you want to maximize the feel of the environment.
Well, there’s one thing that you’ve got to do, and, unfortunately, most folks miss it, and that’s what we’re going to talk about in today’s video.
Hey, folks, Marcus Sheridan here.
Let me tell you a quick story. This is a true story.
I was keynoting an event recently, and I wanted to attend before I actually got on stage, and so I was the post-lunch speaker, and I went before lunch, and there was supposed to be about 800 people in the audience, and when I got in there, there was about 450, so there was almost one empty seat per attendee, and you could imagine that this wasn’t the most dynamic environment because the fact of the matter is when you have empty seats in a room, it’s very difficult to create magic, so I did something that freaked out the event organizer a little bit at first, but it really paid off.
I went to the event organizer, and I said, “Now, I know this is a big stretch, but we’ve got about 45 minutes for lunch. Do you think we could remove these extra 300 or so seats so that we can be shoulder to shoulder in the room when I speak?”
She looked at me, and she kind of freaked out a little bit. She said, “I don’t think there’s any way that’s possible.”
I said, “You know what? There’s workers here. I’m looking at them right now. I am happy to help myself. I will stack, but I promise if we remove these chairs, it’s going to be a dramatically more effective, better, powerful experience,” so she said, “Okay. Let’s do it.”
We did it in about 20 minutes, and here’s what’s cool.
Of course, the talk went great, and they left the setup like that for the rest of the event.
Why did it work so well?
Because what I like to call the sardine effect.
What is the sardine effect?
Well, it essentially means this. When we are shoulder to shoulder with fellow audience members or attendees of an event or of a workshop or of a meeting, it’s going to be way more powerful than if there’s space between us.
Here’s the simple tip.
Let’s say you’re having a meeting with 12 team members next week. If that is the case and you find out all the sudden, last minute, that only 10 are going to be there, take out two of the chairs. One seat per person, that is the key, and if you do this with people being shoulder to shoulder, whether there’s 1,000 people or whether there is 50 people or even six people in the room, I promise it’s going to make a better difference, it’s going to make a powerful moment for everybody, they’re going to feel more connected, there’s going to be greater energy, and that is the essence of the sardine effect, and so make sure you design your environments to get the most out of the experience.
Now, my friends, let’s get to work.