Interview with Mary Kirillova, Managing Director at

Q: How do you boost the levels of creativity at events?
I think the biggest challenge every event professional encounters is the lack of time. When I understand that my team is just passively listening and I realize I am becoming too lazy and tired to stimulate innovative thinking, I switch off my brain. I can watch films, go shopping or have a short bike ride or walk. Then I come home and start imagining the event – the ways people see this kind of event and the areas where I can change the focus or format. I always try to change the format completely and if I cannot, I change and add details and construct the creativity on that.

I am a person who needs advice and needs to share my ideas. That is why my team is very important to me. I always have reunions, Skype calls, travel and talk about what I want to do. And, step by step, creativity for the event appears.

Q: How do you sell creativity at events?
I am very passionate about what I do and I sincerely believe we create good things. In front of all my clients I draw a picture. I say WHAT and WHY we offer our ideas. And that’s how it goes forward.

Everyone wants to create an event that will be remembered, that provokes good emotions and can even change your life.

Q: How do you measure creativity at events?
Creativity is the core of any innovation. But creativity is a complex construction and it needs to be studied properly if we want to develop and implement effective policies.
So what we do is:

  • Before the event we always set a few objectives and think about how we can measure it. The objectives should go into the event proposal and will not only help identify whether the event has been successful in the key areas, but also work as a reminder of what you’re trying to achieve.
  • We try to divide an event into measurable parts (it always works well for the organising part: was the coffee break served on time? did the speaker finish on time? Did people use our apps often? etc)
  • We always try to make the audience play a primary role at the event. As much interactivity as possible – the more they are “in”, the more successful the event will be.
  • We ask and get feedback
  • We calculate the economic part
  • I always try to hire a person to attend the event and see the whole experience from an attendee’s point-of-view. It’s important to know other people’s opinions.

Q: How do you organise creativity at events?
Oh! Creativity is the common denominator for event planning. Everyone wants to create an event that will be remembered, that provokes good emotions and can even change your life. Creativity can be organised by details: design props, invitations, chair covers, centrepieces; by “emotion helpers”: lighting, stage design, sound, speakers, entertainment; and by my favourite thing: changing the format/focus and surprising.