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By Toronto Machine Learning Society (TMLS)

Speakers Guide

So you’re speaking at MLOps World- Congratulations!

We’d like to ask you;

What would make this experience a “home run”? When you look after the event, what would make you thrilled that you took the time to do this presentation?”

Please let us know! Our committee will do our best to help!

Out of over 500 presentations, here’s what the most popular had in common;

1) It’s better to be more technical, than less detailed!

2) Include details to some Practical Questions everyone wants to know; (if applicable)

  • How were teams constructed?
  • How much time do you find this project takes?
  • What did you learn along the way that you didn’t expect?

And also, another really important question;

  • What are some of the low-hanging fruit you’ve seen in your industry? (if you could only choose 1-2 data science projects?)

Remember- everyone’s answers to these vary- and that’s OK. That’s why they’re interesting.

3) Didn’t fall into the B.S trap – keep it honest, and relatable.

  • Everyone makes mistakes! Everyone has experienced failures. Can you share yours? Data Science loves to only share the victories. Imposter Syndrome is so common. Sharing Mistakes is the best way to help others learn.

Those who can speak with honesty, transparency and even vulnerability are like a breath of fresh air. We all know ML/AI projects are scrappy and never go to plan. (Talks/blogs celebrate ‘perfect deployment’ but this is a myth. Your learning experience is authentic and helpful in ways you may not have realized – it’s also what will make your talk authentic, and relatable!

4) Clear core takeaway (learning)

  • If you could leave the audience with only 1 lesson- what would it be? At the end of the day, what would you like the audience to walk away with from your talk? How much emphasis are you putting on those takeaway(s)? Is it clear? Make sure you’re taking the time to ‘hit on the main learning lesson for the audience. Decide on how you will deliver “the goods”. Are there any analogies you can use? Any personal anecdotes or experiences that are memorable? These are the best!

5) Engaged the audience! Allowed for “interactivity”

  • There are multiple ways to do this. One really effective way is to stop and ask them a question before providing them with your answer i.e “Think of a situation where “this happens”, how would you solve it?”

This will help them engage their imagination and make the talk more participatory, and ultimately more memorable! Encourage questions at the end of your talk! You might even be surprised with some of the responses you get after the talk is finished!

6) Invited long-term connections with the audience

  • The audience might be attending your talk because it will be applicable to them in the weeks, or months to come. Let them know they can approach you with questions after the talk, or at the after-party. As well, provide a method(s) of getting in touch so you can help keep the connections going.

7) Mastered timing (Make sure you do a “dry-run”)

  • This is simple, obvious, but surprisingly common. Once you’re up on stage, time flies, and before you know it, your time is up! Make sure you do a couple of practice rounds, timing yourself until you’re confident that you can properly get your points across (and aren’t rushed!). Not sure how long your session is? That’s okay just ask us!

8) Don’t take the bait: Stay away from the commercial

  • If you’re offering a product, service, or even hiring, it may be tempting to stay into the promotional category and ‘big-yourself-up!’ Remember; the best way to promote yourself or your company is to be helpful – your talk will stick and they’ll be grateful. They’ll want to know more about you, and your company afterwards but first, seek to enlighten them. If you’re selling, or hiring, make that connection first – play the long game!


We look forward to meeting you soon,

MLOps World Team