What is The Do Lectures?
Once a year, we gather speakers and attendees on the edge of West Wales to create a village of ideas. The broadband is switched off. And people stop staring at their phones. And, instead, we listen to 20 speakers tell us about their journey. And then people talk about the ideas they have just listened to. It is place for optimism and wonder to thrive, and inspiration to bubble its way to the surface.
It is a small event. Just 100 attendees and 20 speakers. But it is the intimate nature of it that gives its magic. Chickens run around. People swim in rivers. Music plays long into the night.
Local food is cooked by talented local chefs. Coffee made by UK’s top baristas. Teas like you have never tasted before. And local beers brewed on a micro brewery on the farm.
People leave us 3 days later. Things are different for them after that.
What we are not?
We are not a conference. We are not a festival. There are no name badges. The venue takes place on an old farm. In fact after 8 years of doing it, we still have no idea how to describe the event. But, we do know this, that people who attend tell us that it’s the best ‘thing’ they have ever been to.
Doing a talk that you normally do is easy. You can do that blindfold, but we don’t want you to do that. We want you to do the talk you have always wanted to do, the one that scares you because it reveals the very essence of who you are.
We LOVE the heroes journey (highs and lows)...We LOVE vulnerability and We LOVE stories.
If there is a formula for DO talks, the ones that resonate most are those that are real, honest and powerful tales of human passion, resiliency and compassion.
They're not clever or rehearsed. They are human, humorous and humbling. They make you feel that you could do something amazing too.
Why Do stands out?
1. The importance of place.
Difficult to get to helps. Middle of nowhere helps too. The place needs to put you back in touch with nature. Designed so it couldn’t have been done any other way. The Farm is on the edge of West Wales. Closer to Ireland than to London.
2. Never in a conference centre.
No air conditioning. No square box. Nope, none of that. You need to feel the elements around you. The magic of the place takes you far away from your day to day routines.
3. The importance of eclectic mix of speakers.
The speakers need to bring different stories, different viewpoints, different nationalities to the party. The thing that unites them is that they are making some positive change to the world.
4. Remember, the importance of the crowd.
Everyone understands how important speakers are to an event like this. But just as important is to build an eclectic and interesting crowd. Without that, it all falls flat.
5. The magic takes place while everyone eats.
Over 3 days everyone gets to speak to each other while eating great food. If the talks start the fire, sitting down for dinner and listening to the music at night fan the flames. This is where the real thinking gets done. This is where the magic takes place. This is what sets it apart.
6. You have to stay.
Being difficult to get to is important as it means people canʼt just get up and leave. Once they have committed to come, they might as well stay around. The length of time you spend with each other is a factor in its overall success. Most events you leave the same day. Having a place where the speakers, who always have busy schedules, want to hang around is very important.
7. More than just a set of talks.
The workshops are there to give you simple practical tools: How to make bread, how to chop a log, how to doodle etc. Their purpose is to let your mind have a rest. And also to give you a chance to get to know the other people while doing something fun.
8. Music stirs the soul.
Music brings people together. The night times give everyone a chance to relax the mind and the body. Getting the mix right is important. Something local. Something to stir the soul. And something to get everyone singing in the barn.
9. Donʼt follow our own formula.
Lets keep trying new things. The magic can come from un-planned things like running and ending up in the river, like an auction for axes, like a singer with a ukulele in a pub singing songs. These were never planned. Our job is to create a space for the magic to happen.
10. Itʼs a platform to bring ideas people together and then share those ideas with the rest of the world for Free.
The magic comes from all of it and not just one bit. Give the talk of your life, and we will share it with the world. Inspiration should be free.