Category Archives: Public speaking

Powerful lineup at TEDxIslingtonWomen

The lineup for TEDxIslingtonWomen has been confirmed, promising a full day of inspirational speakers including award-winning entrepreneur Zoe Peden, best-selling author Marina Pearson and international artist Meru.

Organised by entrepreneur and stand-up comedian Vaida Filmanaviciute, TEDxIslingtonWomen takes place next Friday, 6 December at Saddler’s Wells in Clerkenwell. The topics covered range from love and intimacy to art, burlesque, business, politics and digital leadership, and the speakers come from a variety of backgrounds including a string of successful authors, mentors and entrepreneurs, as well as a former UN delegate and a burlesque artist. Organiser Vaida Filmanaviciute said: “All speakers been chosen for their inspirational messages, exemplary leadership or influence in their field. It’s a day of inspiration and empowerment for anyone who is interested in women’s issues, and you don’t have to be a woman to fit in that category.”

Talk taster menu

Zoe Peden, whose business is growing on a predicted path to £100m, talks about helping children with communication problems using innovative technology.

Sofie Sandell, author of Digital Leadership, elaborates on how social media can be used to make a difference and help people live a better life.

Dion Johnson, a champion of midlife women, shares why midlife women are crucial to the solution of some of the world’s most challenging problems, and introduces the concept of ‘femfluential women’.

Megan Cumming, who became the UK’s youngest professional speaker at 9, has a fascinating story to tell about overcoming bullying at a young age, relying on a teenager’s inner strength.

Marina Pearson, author of Goodbye Mr Ex and founder of The Innate Wisdom Retreats, talks about where stress comes from and how to overcome it.

Mentor Chris Payne presents the case that we are in a ‘Crisis of Intimacy’, arguing that we are having problems connecting with others at a deeper level, warning of the consequences to society if this is not rectified.

Serial entrepreneur Paulina Sygulska gives a burlesque performance and talks about how burlesque empowers women, and internationally acclaimed artist Meru (Meriliis Rinne) presents her art and talks about her relation to the female figures in her paintings.

[see full line-up of speakers below].


6 December 2013 from 9.30am to 6.00pm
Saddler’s Wells, Rosebery Room
Rosebery Avenue
London EC1R 4TN

Tickets to TEDxIslingtonWomen can be purchased at:

Tickets are selling out fast and there are only 100 available. Organiser Vaida Filmanaviciute recommends securing a ticket as soon as possible to avoid disappointment.

For more information, visit

About the organiser

Vaida Filmanaviciute is a young entrepreneur with a passion for female leadership and enterprise. She is an active member of her local SME community and has recently been elected to the board of directors for a chamber of commerce. Vaida is also a professional speaker and stand-up comedian.

Full list of speakers 

Jay Surti 

Jay Surti is a Business Presentation Mentor, Speaker and Author of Authentic Business Presenter. Having worked in the corporate sector as a litigation lawyer she realised that many people struggle with delivering engaging presentations. Jay now helps executives and corporate professionals transform their presentations to make sure they engage with their audience and get their message across.

Sofie Sandell 

Sofie Sandell is an entrepreneur with interests spanning from technology and leadership to art and sailing. She is a Swedish Londoner, a speaker and author and she also lectures in digital marketing at INSEEC University. Her book, Digital Leadership, about how creativity works in the digital world, was published in September 2013.

Zoe Penden 

Zoe Peden is the co-founder and Chief Juggler at Insane Logic, an award-winning social enterprise that was recently named as one of the top 100 startups with £100m revenue potential. Insane Logic is dedicated to creating software and technology that changes lives and helps people communicate. Zoe believes that everyone should have the right to communicate and creating innovative technology is key to making this happen.

Meriliis Rinne 

Meriliis Rinne, alias Meru, is an international successful artist who has gained recognition for her work, having exhibited in Tallinn, Copenhagen, Oslo and London. Among her other works Meru revels in painting female figures with a unique disposition as a woman painter. Her often spoken motto is: nothing is more powerful than talented people doing what they love. She is a perfect living example of her motto.

Chris Payne

Christopher John Payne has worked with hundreds of individuals and couples to help them move forward in their lives. He will be talking about the Crisis Of Intimacy which he notices more and more with clients where they’re experiencing a greater difficulty in connecting deeply with others, preferring instead to spend more time alone or with casual friends and acquaintances. Chris explains the problems this will cause society if not rectified, and ways to increase connection and intimacy in our day-to-day lives.

Annik Rau 

Annik Rau has over 30 years’ experience in being scared of speaking in public and declining speaking opportunities due to the fear of looking silly in front of peers before she started PONY Express Speaker Training. Today, in her model of the world, everyone loves speaking as much as she loves unicorns. Annik will be talking about how your life could be better by falling in LOVE with public speaking and what unicorns got to do with it. In the world of psychology, there is no one-size-fits-all solution for those fears. Wouldn’t it be a great world if insecurities made us more attractive? Until this happens, let’s explore ways to deal with those ‘scary’ thoughts and feelings right here and now.

Dion Johnson 

Dion Johnson is a Champion of Midlife Women in Leadership and has worked with hundreds of women who find themselves fed up and stuck in a career and life rut, helping them to ditch the mundane and mediocre ‘dying off at your desk’ syndrome to create meaningful thrilling work and lives that they love and that brings out their best whilst making significant positive difference in their world.

Elizabeth Sullivan 

Elizabeth Sullivan is a Love Mentor, formerly a Chartered Accountant working in the city, she now helps single professionals attract an amazing relationship. Originally from New Zealand, she moved to London in 1999, where her ongoing interest in psychology led to her retraining as a Coach, Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP) Master Practitioner and Hypnotherapist. She also teaches Hypnotherapy at the London College of Clinical Hypnosis.

Illy Sebah

Ilham currently works in the field of psychology and has a strong background in the mental health and education sector. After gaining a prestigious Masters in Clinical Neuroscience from The Institute of Psychiatry (King’s College, London) her interest has been focused on bridging the gap between thoughts, behaviours and the relationship with the human brain. She has a strong passion for creating positive change by exploring the barriers that prevent us from reaching our potential. When she isn’t wearing her ‘professional hat.’ Ilham thrives on making new connections and getting people to laugh at her jokes, which are always hilarious in her mind.

Marina Pearson

Marina Pearson is the best-selling author of Goodbye Mr Ex and the founder of Your Pathway To Wisdom and The Innate Wisdom Retreats for Women. She has been featured in numerous magazines and tabloids and regularly writes for the Huffington Post, sharing her wisdom of how to overcome relationship and life stress. She is known for transforming stress into effortless living and her clients leave feeling at peace and free.

Edina Elek 

Edina Elek is Founder of Siskin Property Investments. Edina Elek worked in investment banking for 10 years focusing on Commercial and Residential Mortgage Backed Securities where she discovered her passion for property. Ms Elek is an active philanthropist, currently a business mentor for Cherie Blair foundation.

Laura Dzelzyte 

Laura Dzelzyte has over 10 years’ experience in the international climate sphere at a senior political and executive level as a Climate Finance Expert, Carbon Trader and a UN Climate Negotiator.
Laura was the head of the Lithuanian delegation 2009-2010 in the UNFCCC process and continues participating in the international climate negotiations as adviser to Lithuanian government. She sits on the UN Adaptation Fund board, chairing the Programmes and Projects Committee, as elected by the UN Eastern European regional group.
She was named as one of 35 exceptional women under age of 35 in 2007 by Shell and World Business Magazine.

Paulina Sygulska 

Paulina is a Serial Entrepreneur, an aspiring geek and a networking junkie. Her most recent venture, GrantTree, is going from strength to strength helping top tech startups in the UK (Stack Exchange, Duedil, Go Cardless) secure Government funding for R&D, equity free. After hours, she likes to indulge in a bit of burlesque.


Leave a Comment

1st December update about TEDWomen and TEDxIslingtonWomen


I can’t believe it’s December already. The first week of December means it’s time for TEDWomen and there are hundreds of TEDxWomen events around the world.

I am speaking at TEDxIslingtonWomen Friday, 6th December – please come along if you can. I am going to speak about sharing and caring and doing good through social media.

Read more and register here

The mother of all TEDxWomen events is taking place on 5th December in San Francisco this year. There are three themes during the day:

  • To Be Is to Do
  • Wisdom Begins with Wonder
  • To Move the World First Move Yourself

You can read this on their website:

“In San Francisco for the first time, TEDWomen 2013 will channel the bootstrap spirit of Silicon Valley to celebrate invention in all its forms. Not just technology and things, but also solutions to poverty; approaches to peacemaking; expressions of art, and, at times, our own lives.

More than 150 TEDx events around the world will take part, sharing the livestream and presenting local speakers around the theme “Invented Here.” The result: A truly global conversation — from San Francisco to São Paulo to Seoul — celebrating inventors and designers; thinkers and makers; local problem-solvers and global leaders.

TEDWomen 2013: Invented Here. See the program » As part of the TEDWomen conference, local TEDx events around the world will be surfacing and celebrating innovative people in their own communities.”

Let’s celebrate all the amazing women in our lives – mothers, grandmothers, sisters, daughters, friends, teachers and everyonewho has inspired us.

Check if there is a TEDxWomen event where you live.

Best wishes,



PS. When I spoke at TEDxUCL in June this year several people in the audience asked why there were so few female speakers; out of 28 speakers only 5 were female during the day. There are many reasons why women don’t speak… and are not invited to speak… by speaking at a TEDxWomen event we show the world that there are hundreds of female speakers who want to be heard. You can read my blog post here.

Leave a Comment

Sofie Sandell is one of the speakers at TEDxIslingtonWomen 6th December

TEDxIslingtonWomen is organised in conjunction with TEDWomen. Come along for a day of inspiration and fun!

TEDWomen is a TED event curated by TED and Pat Mitchell that focuses on women and women’s issues. TEDxWomen events are TEDx events hosted around the live webcast of TEDWomen, and may also feature local speakers.

TEDxIslingtonWomen is going to be full day event featuring such prominent speakers as Jay Surti, Sofie Sandell, Chris Payne, Meriliis Rinne, Edina Elek, David Jones and many more.

Come along to celebrate these and other amazing women around the world. Get your ticket here.

Leave a Comment

Digital Leadership and Creativity at #TechTalkfest 31 July 2013 with speaker Sofie Sandell

Digital Leadership and Creativity at #TechTalkfest 31 July 2013 with speaker Sofie Sandell

Digital Leadership and Creativity at #TechTalkfest 31 July 2013 with speaker Sofie Sandell

I was invited to speak about my book Digital Leadership at TechTalkfest first breakfast meeting at Adam Street Club.

  1. Started the event checking out who was in the audience:- Who work for a start-up?
    – Who is a geek?

    – Who was born in the UK?

    – Who was born outside the Europe?

    – Who uses the internet every day?

  2. “Who would like to describe themselves as a geek” ME!! @TechTalkfest #techtalkfest
  3. It is about us to help the people who find technology scary #techtalkfest @TechTalkfest
  4. The world need more leaders! We are in need of leaders to create change and improvements in areas such as healthcare, education, infrastructure, and our environment. We need more leaders who know how to use the digital tools in a smart way, more leaders who know how to make an impact online, drive wealth online and connect with people online.
  5. Interesting discussion of creativity and digital leadership #techtalkfest – how open are you to new ideas?
  6. “Some people find IT and technology scary” says @Soffi_Propp. Indeed they do – which makes my job interesting 🙂 #techtalkfest
  7. One important ingredient in ‘Digital Leadership’ is the ability to be creative with new ideas and welcome new ideas into your organisation. A digital leader know how creativity works and is saying YES to new ideas, is open for improvement and new solutions.

  8. Interesting discussion of creativity and digital leadership #techtalkfest – how open are you to new ideas?
  9. “We need to create wealth but wealth doesn’t just mean money” @Soffi_Propp #TechTalkfest
  10. Interesting discussion of creativity and digital leadership #techtalkfest – how open are you to new ideas?
  11. Discussing how early adopters in an organisation can be a great filter for new ideas and technology. #techtalkfest
  12. As a leader is it empowering (and engenders buy-in) to allow your team to bring new ideas and techniques to a project #techtalkfest
  13. We don’t need average ideas, we need exceptional ideas #techtalkfest
  14. Story of HMV – why was the intern responsible for the #socialmedia channels? Social needs to be taken seriously! #techtalkfest @TechTalkfest
  15. Learn how to say “yes please, tell me more” about new ideas #techtalkfest @TechTalkfest
  16. Company in their teenage years – always connected online – this is @Pink_squid #techtalkfest @TechTalkfest
  17. Many of us are active in social media and we use digital tools every day.  This means that you and I will have loads of ideas how we can use digital tools and solutions in our work. Many people will put forward new ideas to you and your organisation how certain things can be done. How do you nurture the new ideas?
  18. Am I suggesting new ideas? How do I handle new ideas when they are presented to me? Food for thought! #techtalkfest
  19. Thanks @ZoeFCunningham for arranging a fab first #techtalkfest breakfast – some interesting and challenging ideas to mull over!
  20. Thanks to @ZoeFCunningham for organising the wonderful #techtalkfest breakfast about digital leadership @TechTalkfest
  21. Big thanks to @Soffi_Propp our great speaker this morning. Really interesting discussion on how best to deal with new ideas #TechTalkfest
  22. Thank you for inviting me to speak today. It was great fun!!!

    Sofie Sandell

Did you find this story interesting? Be the first to
or comment.
(turn this feature off)


Click on ‘Distribute’ above for more embed options.


Leave a Comment

Sofie Sandell @ 5×5 College of Public Speaking PowerPoint Event

I spoke about finding your creativity @ 5×5 College of Public Speaking PowerPoint Event with 19 other speakers 11 June 2013. It was a great event and I loved the 5 minutes and 5 slides format.

The concept

We’ve all heard of death by PowerPoint and individuals who have hijacked events by running hours over time with their presentations. Some enlightened companies have introduced a new format for informative group sessions. Each participant is allowed a 5 minute slot where they’re allowed to deliver a maximum of 5 PowerPoint slides. At 5 minutes, the bell rings and you’re off.

Event Theme
The theme for the event was ‘Education’. So 20 x 5 minute educational sessions…

Yes Group London
The entrance fee was  donated to the Yes Group’s Basket Brigade (to help disadvantaged families at Christmas).


Sofie Sandell is the author of the book ‘Digital Leadership – How Creativity in Business Can Propel Your Brand and Boost Your Results’.

You can download Sofie Sandell’s tips on how to become a leader online and we will let you know when the book is out. Just sign up to Sofie’s newsletter here:

Leave a Comment

What makes a great speaker? Sofie speaking at TEDxUCL

In the last three weeks I’ve been out and about speaking at several events and two of which were TEDxUCL and The College of Public Speaking 5×5 presentation event. Plus that I’ve been to JCI European Conference in Monaco.

I’ve seen over 50 speeches in these weeks and today I am thinking about what it is that makes a speech great and memorable.

I love listening to people sharing their stories, and some of the best talks I’ve been to I still remember the content years after I heard it.

My take on what makes a great talk:

  • You feel emotionally involved
  • Great story telling techniques, it’s easy to follow
  • The speaker is sharing personal experiences
  • Good timing – you know when you’ve been thinking about something for a while and then ta-da, an expert on the topic is on stage.

Do you agree? Please comment below.

Why so few female speakers? 
After I spoke at TEDxUCL at least six people asked me why there are so few female speakers. Out of 28 speakers only five were female. In my network I know many women who all can speak at events, so they do exist! I believe that women are not putting themselves forward as speakers often enough, and men are more likely to do that. And there are more known male established speakers and it’s easy for organisers to contact them.

Why do you think there are so few female speakers?

And do you know of any great female speakers you would like to promote? 

Please comment! 


Sofie’s TEDx talk was about : ‘Digital leadership – empowering new ideas’

As soon as the talk is published on TEDx YouTube channel it will published here on the website as well.

Leave a Comment

Digital Leadership and Creativity

Sofie Sandell’s speech at TeachMeetLondon, Bridge Academy, 1 May 2013.

“I was one of 20 speakers at TeachMeetLondon 1st May. The event is like a TEDx conference for people in education. It was great fun and they through Yoda on me when I went on for too long :)”


Sofie Sandell is the author of the book ‘Digital Leadership – How Creativity in Business Can Propel Your Brand and Boost Your Results’, to be published soon. 

You can download Sofie Sandell’s tips on how to become a leader online and we will let you know when the book is out. Just sign up to Sofie’s newsletter here:

Leave a Comment

Social Media Q&A

Do you have any questions about life in relation to social media?

Send an email with your question to Sofie Sandell for a chance to get it published here.

Blog Archive

All blog categories

1) Branding
2) Conferences
3) Creativity
4) Feminine Leadership
5) Google Hangouts
6) Leadership
7) Life online
8) Personal
9) Podcasts
10) Public speaking
11) Press and media mentions
12) Social media
13) Social Media Q&A

14) Trendspotting

Enjoy my blog. If you have any feedback please let me know!


12 practical tips for how to use social media to build your reputation and share your key messages

To download click here, or the image below.

You don't have to give me your email address, but if you like to subscribe to my Digital Leadership Inspiration newsletter you can do that here.











Digital Leadership with Sofie Sandell