What Your Workshop Needs: A Dose of Style

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Last night, I hosted the first ever #BossLadyBash here in Montana.

I'll do a full recap next week but simply put? It was amazing. The high that comes from hosting an event or doing live coaching or speaking is one that is hard to get in any other medium.

Once you do it, you won't be able to get enough.

Part of the #BossLadyBash that was so important to me was having a great client experience, which I talk about ad nauseum.

But there are about 1000 ways to make a client experience great, and it changes from event to event.

For the #BossLadyBash, I knew I was inviting creatives from around the state to come to this event and meet each other in a non-competitive, collaborative way. But I also really, really wanted it to be pretty. Because so many of them dedicate their working lives to creating beauty and significance to their clients.

And I wanted to do that for each one of them.

I created these amazing gift boxes, with prints and scratch pads from Birdwalk Press, single-shot coffee paks from Little Red Wagon, cookies from Whipped, and a hand-written Thank You note from me.

It probably would have been fine to package all this stuff up in a paper bag and called it good.

But I knew that the details of these gift boxes were important to me. So I styled them in Uline craft boxes, with krinkly cut paper packaging in branded colors (from the dollar store!), and enclosed each box with baker's twine (ribbon was wildly expensive and I would have needed 5 feet for each box! So much!).

Were these details essential? Not really.

Did they cause me a lot of stress? Yes.

Did it pay off? I'm not quite sure yet, but what I do know is that the style of these little boxes made me feel like the effort I put into this event reflected what I wanted my participants to get out of it.

So how does this pertain to you?

Style is important, even if you're simply hosting a two-hour workshop or networking event.

Some ways to style up your workshop and let people know you've paid attention to the details:

1. Your website

Instead of using an outside service (like Eventbrite), style your website or sales page so that it  reflects how you want people to feel at the event.

2. Paper goods

Professionally designed handouts aren't only pretty, they can often streamline the teaching process. If it's in your budget, style up your worksheets or handouts; perhaps even compiling them into a small booklet. This makes it more likely that your attendees will look back on the work they did if it's well organized and easy to navigate.

3. Gift boxes/bags

I love giving presents so even if you just give out a handwritten thank you note, you can add a little style, or your own brand into gift-giving at the end of your event. I always try to add some fun colors that are in line with my brand and I try to make each gift intentional (read: no USB keys or flashlights. Just no.)

4. Tablescapes

Flowers can be so cheap from the grocery store and add a world of difference when you're hosting an event in a colorless location. Plus, who wouldn't want to sit at a seat with fresh flowers nearby all day? You can also use colorful snacks like M+Ms or La Croix water placed at each seat. Anyway that you can make your attendees' experience easier (like having snacks and water available on the table or close by throughout the day) means they'll have a better experience.

You don't have to do ALL of these things, but a bit of styling and thought turns your workshop from "just another seminar" into something that people enjoy attending and talk about again in the future.

What about you? What styling elements have you added to your events in the past? Which one of these are you likely to choose in the future?

Lauren CaselliComment