Creative speed dating ideas
My Halloween-themed “Dating’s Not So Scary Party” at a brewery was well-attended and lively, but the management was soured by the unimpressive amount of beer purchased by participants. I asked friends and colleagues to alert their more distinguished single male friends. This is the point where I should have apologized to My Girls and cancelled the event.
The final event, though, was a two-month disaster in the making, and I blame myself. But I wanted so much for it to happen that I had another of my now-famous bad ideas. All I needed to do was search a reasonable radius for men in my target age range looking for women in that target age range.
“This indicates to me that they were not seriously looking to meet anyone and they were just there because it was a free evening. To those of you newly looking, or still looking, or in the midst of packing up your bells and staplers, I say: Keep an open mind.
Even though I did get a match, if anyone asks what I thought of the whole experience, I will inform them that I would not do it again as the men were there under false pretense, and certainly not with yourself as the Event Coordinator.” Clearly, my well-intended enthusiasm was not well received, despite the fact that this woman actually got a date out of it. Whether you speed date or slow date, you will likely get what you expect.
I spent more time researching dates for these women than I ever did for myself. In the 24 hours before the event, I was out four, almost five, women.
One wrote me the day prior asking if she could still get a refund, and I explained that because she was confirmed this was not the policy.
Of course, corporate icebreakers aren’t the only way to coax attendees out of their shells.
People specifically attend business events to network.
“According to the men that I spoke with, they all informed me that they were recruited by you,” one woman wrote me after the event. At that time, as a single parent of two kids and two dogs, with a full-time job and a home to run, a speed date was all I could manage; all I could commit to.
The idea grew out of Dürr’s birthday party in early 2013, where he had set up a room for traditional speed dating.
While guests did seem to enjoy themselves and it served as a fast track for his friends and colleagues to get to know each other, those who were spoken for felt wary about joining in.
I want to be honest and therefore will not crash the event planned for 47-year-olds.” Another woman wrote, “Please tell me what it is wrong with being over 35? I found another “olde taverne” type setting and arranged an event for the 42 to 54 age range. Offering free coupons meant this event would be pro bono for me—it would cost me money, actually. I did not blanket suitable suitors on but instead read every profile in this age range and explored their interests and personalities.
The day it was posted online was the day it sold out for women. Then I personally e-mailed them (after reinstating my own account—on my dime) and discussed the opportunity with each.As freelancers, most people in the creative industry rely greatly on networking, but not everyone has the time or energy to go to event after event, hoping to strike up a helpful conversation. Some were sceptical about the idea at the Sofitel event in June, but then again, how bad could it be?