Over the last few years, I’ve delivered numerous talks, demonstrations, and seminars to groups as small as 6 and as large as 60. During that time I’ve figured out what works and what doesn’t and I’ve been asked by event organisers on every occasion about what’s needed hence this note…
To get the most out of your event and to keep me from going barking mad, I’ve put together this list of requirements and suggestions. I ask that the person responsible for the event actively confirm that you’ll make these things happen. Here it is for your team:
Please consider the following guidelines for getting the most out of a session featuring Angela Watson and her Golden Retrievers.
1. I believe in positive, reward based dog training. We (me and the dogs) travel by van, where the dogs have their own beds in a secure crate, with their own water and food supply, collar, lead, toys. All we need is a shady car parking space as near to the venue entrance as possible. We don’t travel by public transport.
2. For team development days only, we will provide one facilitator per every 10 people who is qualified and experienced enough to facilitate people and provoke them in a positive way.
3. Pawz4Thought sessions are participative, interactive, and involve people moving around. They also involve group activities which are sensory challenging. There needs to be enough space for these activities to take place safely (either indoors or outdoors). If indoors, please ensure the room is de-cluttered of superfluous equipment. If outdoors please ensure it’s a safe, secure environment.
4. Please check that the venue is dog friendly. Angela has public liability insurance and the dogs are insured. Tell the venue that they are highly trained ‘competitive obedience dogs’ and are fully house trained. An outside toilet area for them should be agreed with the venue beforehand.
5. If indoors, the room will need to be set up with a semi-circle of chairs and no tables. I will not require power-point or a screen unless I specifically ask for it, but will require access to a power supply, a well lit room, flip chart stand, paper and pens.
6. Alas the dogs can’t be handled, trained, walked, or fed by members of the audience. Too much stimulation blows their mind. They stay with me or one of the Pawz4Thought team at all times. However they are very friendly and happy to be touched and stroked.
7. TIP: Giving a talk and ending with a Q & A session is tempting but not usually an effective way of getting the most out of a Pawz4Thought session. Instead, I will get the audience to work together in small groups to formulate questions. Then have each group firing questions for around 15 minutes. The session will finish with a group activity, ending the session on an up.
8. TIP: Groups that schedule a break after a Pawz4Thought session are usually glad they did. You get that high energy buzz and you get conversation time as people consider what they have just learned.
9. TIP: It’s a good idea to dispense with tables and pack people in close together.
10.Feel free to take photos as you like and to post on social media. Pawz4Thought sessions are not available as a handout or slides.
11. In case you haven’t already worked it out, you don’t have permission to record and then re-sell or distribute a Pawz4Thought session.
12. If you’d like to connect before the event Twitter is actually quicker than email. I can be reached @angelawatsonuk.
13. Suggested Intro: “ANGELA WATSON, has two passions – unleashing human potential and dogs. Angela’s unique work on what human leaders can learn from dogs is featured in ILM Edge Magazine, and her work on developing leadership capability is published in the International Journal of Clinical Leadership, and The Health Service Journal. Angela is renowned for her interactive and truly enaging style that really makes an impact and inspires audiences. She’s also honoured to have been described as having “the rare and powerful talent of humour and the ability to move from serious, profound insight, to a place of lightness and fun…to really land a message”.