Organizing the VIP event: my experience

Posted on December 1st, by Annouk van der Lely in Blog. No Comments

It has only been a few days after the TEDxSaxionUniversity Brave New World conference, but wow! What an amazing experience, I’m pretty sure that I’m not the only one who still feels energetic and inspired because of it.

In case you haven’t seen me around yet, I will give you a small introduction of myself. I’m Annouk van der Lely and currently in my second year of Tourism Management at Saxion University of Applied Sciences. I like to see myself as a global citizen and an open-minded, curious girl.

One of the subjects I have in school is Event management (love it!) and for this module we had to pick one event out of six events that were offered and help organizing it. Oh, I couldn’t have been happier that I chose the TEDx VIP event, because it has been an extraordinary experience.
It all started around 3 months ago, when my team decided that I would be a good project leader. I got in touch with the super lovely Denise Emot, who was my client for the event. After our first meeting I walked out of the room a bit confused. “Wait. Was this now a client meeting or a nice talk with a good friend?” were the exact words I asked my teammates. And that’s how I kept feeling the whole time. Whenever I met new people from the TEDx Saxion team, I felt like I got a new friend (shoutout to Nadi Zoetebier and Marieke van der Vossen ;-)! Everyone was so full of passion, so kind and so inspiring. I couldn’t have wished for a better work vibe.

Annouk and team

In the picture: Marie, Annouk (me), Steffi, Denise, Franzi & Emilia!

But, as a project leader you do have to do more than making new friends. What a bummer, right ;-). As I said before, I was responsible for organizing the VIP event before the main event, for some special guests. My team and I received a very clear vision; show the guests that there is more to Deventer than just the history of the city. And this whole program also had to fit with the mission of TED, to connect people. So the brainstorm sessions began, followed by a lot of planning, a lot of calling (I called so much that I had to pay the double amount of my phone contract, oopsie!) and yes… A LOT of stress. And everything was worth it. I didn’t just organize this event because I had to for school, I did it because I love organizing and I love doing something for others. It’s difficult for me to describe the feeling you get going through this whole process and seeing how much people value the thing that you created. But trust me, it’s priceless!

So a huge thank you for the TEDx Saxion team, the volunteers and guests, because we together make the awesome TEDx community. I hope to see you soon again and for now; stay, feel and be connecTED!

>> Photos of the VIP event

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