Leadership Conference Or A Dance Party? Solve This Conundrum

Aug 11, 2012 by     9 Comments    Posted under: Opinions

When I opened facebook this morning, I was greeted with another notification for an obscure youth conference. The information section of the said youth conference’s page was filled with enthusiastic messages on empowering the youth along side the usual list of speakers, and celebrities gracing the “biggest event of the year”.

You can probably find promotional posters, flyers, and facebook invites of various leadership workshops, motivational conferences and youth forums etcetera splashed everywhere, trying to attract the attention of all and sundry by blaring out slogans and text that promise to change the way you see life.

These youth conferences and training programs were designed and developed for young people to connect and engage, develop and enhance their management skills, and boost their confidence for positive change. It prepares them to exchange ideas, work as a team, set goals, facilitate meetings, and become an effective presenter/speaker.

For the last decade, a few famous training institutes have been organizing these events to facilitate the program for the youth of our country. However, more recently, it has started to turn into a fad to pull out events whether it is a conference or a training workshop, and make a mockery out of them by minimizing the learning aspect. What kind of training are they providing? Has any one ever judged them? Instead of providing concrete support and training to the younger lot, much like our desi films, they have developed the formula for successful event.

Which primarily is:
A renowned trainer/speaker+ Music+ Television/ Internet celebrities+ ”Hot women” + Heavy promotion and marketing + Hi-Tea/Lunch = Successful youth conference.  

What is going on? Our youth can not attend a corporate event/seminar organized by their institutions without claiming it to be utter waste of time, filled with boring ramblings of the speaker, but yes, they can attend these so called training sessions which are a waste of time and money with zero learning outcomes.

Recently, I have seen some heavy promotion of a desi event claiming to the baap of every event out there and guess what? They implemented the same successful formula of pulling off a conference, making a fool out of everyone who paid huge amount of money to be there. Is dance, music, and the random dialogues by some random motivational speaker in this so called training event really worth it? I don’t think so. The learning part out of this whole experience is disappointing, and it really does seem to be more of a socializing affair.

What’s surprising is that here even the organizers who are “champs” can’t speak properly, and need a training or two themselves. Our youth has definitely much sense to differentiate between a real youth conference event and training over the fake ones. I am not against organizing these events but who ever is the part of the training fraternity should take notice and produce quality events, and not concentrate merely on the quantity of events. Lets’ hope for a change in the future.


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9 Comments + Add Comment

  • Totally Agreed Faryal. I seemed to have lost trust in the whole trainer business anyways. There were times when people would actually come at schools and deliver life lessons to aspiring youngsters – All For Free. Right now it’s just a business everyone wants to have a share of. What was even more depressing when I could find these questions in one of the event threads.

    1. What speakers are coming? I hope Mr. XYZ is coming, he’s the best!
    2. What are the social events? Heard about a beach dance party, can’t wait!
    3. Can I come in chappals or shall we wear something formal to the event?
    4. Is it okay if I bring a friend along, I get bored akelay.
    5. What would be the timings? Can we skip the sessions and come directly in the social events?
    6. Haha on PDA in the rule book. I thought I can’t bring my iPad and got confused.

    So even the audience is playing the same game. It’s just NOT right.

  • Totally agreed Hamza.
    and you forgot to add another question ,
    Is lunch/Meal included in all sessions?

    The same trainer in every event and using same content with some humorous quotes etc. just attend two events of the same trainer and you will agree. Gone are the days when they really prepare good content for every event.
    using same content like article spinner :/
    and just because of this trend, the real trainers don’t agree to give lectures in any of these events.

  • Well! Hamza you rightly pointed out the main issue, training isn’t being used for grooming purpose. its a purely commercial activity now and people (organizers/ so called trainers) want to maximize their earnings using every possible mean. all they need is a multimedia, some flyers, few banners and a reasonably good hall/hut. invest few bucks and get maximum ROE. they want to attract maximum participants by including everything on their agenda which isn’t related to training.
    I also believe people who participate in such so called training sessions do not come with intent to learn, they actually come to socialize and what else could be a better option than paying a meager amount and getting a whole lot of “hot/smart participants”.

    i believe one main reason that is promoting such low quality “training cum social get togethers” is that the renowned trainers are charging too much for their sessions.Although their corporate training sessions are focused, provide quality material, some real good food for thought etc etc. but people who are paying from pocket stay away from such events coz of affordability. but i experienced that attending 2-4 such quality sessions is far better than participating in 12-15 so called training sessions/get togethers.

  • This is so true. I wasted my time and money on the desi event you talked about. At the end of the event ‘champ of the event’ asked the participants to give their feedback about the event and only then we’d be given our certificates. I criticised to a certain extent as you did and guess what my feedback was deleted and I was given a speech in a rather harsh way about how difficult it is to pull off a training event and ‘ Insaan kabhi khush nahin hota :p ‘ .. This is my recent experience of how pointless these training events have become. Couldn’t agree more.

  • True. Also I would strongly like to contest on the title of ‘Trainer’ being associated to every person out there. You come, you talk once and there you go. You’ve trained 300 individuals and it shall keep on increasing that way. Is that how we’re going to categorize now?

  • Must I also point out the ‘Dance for a Cause’ Campaigns in motion these days? I don’t know, there’s just too much going on to JUST comment.

    I rest my case.

  • Seems like all it takes to steal such treasures of their true worth are a few earring wearing homeboys and some gals in jeans. People get seduced to those fad events, actually thinking that they made “a change” in the society and their lives. While the effects are almost identical to that of watching Veena Malik in Ramadan………. Waste, Waste and Waste.

  • I attended an event this summer. None of the speakers mentioned on their “facebook event page” except one turned up. Interesting bit is that they didn’t even touched near the topic that they were supposed to discuss.

  • It’s kind of sad to see that these conferences have turned into everyday garbage. The whole purpose of these events is lost in the middle of the song and dance going on.
    You’ve highlighted a very crucial point! Good read.

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