What have we learnt from our Speakers Corner Connects Series so far?

10 June 2020

It's been 3 months since the Speakers Corner team decamped from our London office and headed off to our respective homes to begin working in isolation. One of our ideas to keep the events community together was the Speakers Corner Connects series, a programme of virtual events designed to provide inspiration and education to organisers while the pandemic takes place.

From mental health to building resilience, discussing workplace culture and achieving success in adversity, taking a deep dive into what's happening in the world, and touching on creativity, our programme has delivered many highs so far.

Let's take a quick look at some of our most memorable moments to date.

It's Time to Look After Our Mental Health

Our very first showcase discussed our mental health a few weeks after the lockdown began. From the very beginning, our speakers set about delivering practical advice to manage our mental health during what was an incredibly stressful and anxious time for many of us.

A highlight for Debbie was Dr Linda Papadopoulos  who kicked things off by stressing that for as long as social distancing remains, it’s important to remember we’re in physical isolation, NOT social isolation. We can still see people and communicate with people, just not in person. Feeling isolated can be detrimental to one’s mental health, so this was an important point to begin with.

The conversation around mental health has got louder over the last few years and Mark Henick , for us, delivered the most poignant reminder that during this crisis, we need to be here for each other. Have a listen to what he has to say below…

Building Resilience and Achieving Success in a Time of Crisis

Our second virtual masterclass took us into resilience mode as we began to make sense of the pandemic and how we can positively respond to the situation we found ourselves in.

Debra Searle  began by sharing her story of crossing the Atlantic Ocean against all the odds after being abandoned at sea. Debra’s story was incredibly relevant, discussing how to cope with isolation and draw creativity from your environment to innovate and succeed in the most challenging of circumstances.

However, it was Farrah Storr  who provided perhaps the standout inspirational message to our audience. Farrah describes in the clip below just why we, as humans, are used to adversity and why, despite the pandemic becoming a turbulent period in our history, we are equipped with the tools to survive and thrive.

How To Create A Winning Culture in Adversity

Creating a winning culture is a common theme we hear from event organisers even when businesses are performing well. For our third virtual masterclass, we decided to show off a few inspiring examples of how a winning culture can be built and sustained even during adversity.

Gabby Logan  expertly weaved her knowledge and insights into what it takes for a sporting team to be successful and how that can be translated into the business world. Her stories from spending time with Jurgen Klopp, Liverpool FC Manager, and the New Zealand All Blacks, were both absorbing and practical for leaders to take away and start implementing straight away.

However, our top moment from this event was when Eddie Obeng  took to the ‘stage’ first and set the tone for what we were about to hear. Eddie’s choice of words was profound, spelling out the dangers present, but an opportunity to navigate to sunnier times. Have a listen below.

Making Sense of an Uncertain Time

It’s fair to say this period for many of us is completely unprecedented. How do we make sense of what’s happening and how to spot the opportunities which lie in the darkness?

Our 4th virtual masterclass was organised to do just that, with Paul Johnson  from the Institute of Fiscal Studies kicking things off by taking a deep dive into the financial picture and what this means for all of us.

A highlight for Tim was the contrasting views between economist Paul Johnson and entrepreneur Leonard Brody . The two different viewpoints came across really well on screen and added a dynamic flavour to the event. Indeed Nick picks up on this point, highlighting Leonard's point that if a football game was held tomorrow, while it might not be a sell-out, there would be many people who would still attend. We need to be willing to change to adapt to new circumstances and showing resilience and strength while we move towards this.

Our highlight from this event was from Pippa Malmgren  who allowed us to imagine what our businesses could look like and why businesses need to unleash the creativity within their employees to spot those new opportunities.

A Virtual Audience With Nile Rodgers and Vick Hope

Back in June we were delighted to host an exclusive Q&A with multiple GRAMMY award winner Nile Rodgers .

Hosted by Vick Hope , Nile delivered a candid and absorbing interview for just under an hour, filled with great stories from his time in music, to his background, upbringing and touching upon the Black Lives Matters Movement too.

What stood out for us was Nile's answer to a question from the audience and whether the pandemic will affect the music industry. Take a listen below to what we think is an inspiring answer!

Diversity & Inclusion 2.0 

Hot on the heels of the Black Lives Matter protests was a discussion that took place on how we take diversity & inclusion from a conversation to change.

Hosted by Juliette Foster  we listened as David Lammy  and John Amaechi OBE  eloquently shared their story and took us on a journey to discover how change can be delivered.

For further information or to book a speaker, call us on   or email  info@speakerscorner.co.uk.

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