Top Ten Takeaways from a Training Seminar”

The presenter’s books and DVDs seem to cover most if not all of the content she described in her workshops at a much lower price. I believe I was the only person in attendance who purchased the complete set of materials at a cost of $118, versus $750 for the sessions.

VeRiExpensive_Productions_WhiteAs to the presentation itself, I can offer a few constructive remarks:

  1. She ought to have been miked, as she was a little hard to hear, and the effect would also have been to lend a little more “godly” authority to her voice. Think Tony Robbins.
  2. Her PowerPoints were hard to read. White text against white clouds and a sky-blue background. Also, the fonts were too small, and there was too much text per slide. Think “cognitive overload.”
  3. She self-deprecated in a self-sabotaging sortof way. For example, her photo is on the cover of one of her books alongside Deepak Chopra. She said, dismissively, “I don’t really know him. I just thought it was cool they put my picture up there alongside his.” I went from being impressed–(authority by apparent association)–to, “Oh. Well in that case, so what…”
  4.  She also self-sabotaged by putting *price* ahead of *value* in her presentation. It sounded a little pitchy towards the end; hard-sell versus soft-sell, which is anathema to me. It’s better to present value ahead of the price proposition. Good: “A three day session covering 24 stress reduction techniques for only $750”–versus–Bad: “$750 for a three day session covering 24 stress reduction techniques.”Puts “Can I afford it?!” (and “Do I have the time?–for that matter”) ahead of “Do I need it?!”
  5. As a corollary to 4, she self-sabotaged by openly negotiating different price-points during the workshop. It went from something like “$1,200 for full-sticker price” to “$750 for tonight’s participants” with a “$150 discount for tonight only if you sign-up here and now” to “an additional discount for groups of 2 or more.” I immediately thought about randomly partnering-up with someone else in the room for the additional (yet unquantified) discount, the way you do in a family-style Italian restaurant that gives priority seating at communal tables to parties of four or more. Also, with so many downwardly spiraling price options presented in rapid fire, I though in the back of my mind there would likely be another one coming if I just waited her out a bit.
  6. The session should have been broken up into two 50 minute hours with a bathroom break in-between. The only “snacks” were liquid–tea and coffee. Some of us are on FloMax (which contrary to a popular misconception, actually maxes one’s flow). I had to trot, not being able to stand it any longer–sadly at the crux of an interesting talking point–which only added to mixed feelings of frustration and futility. It reminded me of Erhard Seminar Training (EST), where we were disbarred from going to the bathroom for three days. (I had to blow past one of Mr. Erhard’s door Nazi’s 1/2 hour into the 1st session to relieve myself, who then wouldn’t let me back in. Guess “I got it”–which I’m told was the ultimate take-away of the workshop anyway. I was not alone in this either during Ms. Grenough’s presentation. The gentleman next to me confided in having repressed the need to pinch a loaf. I don’t know how long that takes, but the average for completion of the task should be the minimum allocated for a–in the words of Eva Archer Smith–“bio break.”
  7. As a corollary to 6, most if not all the people there wanted to socialize. There was no time provisioned for that, and by the time the marathon session ended, we were too tired anyway. Think “community-building.”
  8. The formative account of her bike accident–that led to her epiphanies about stress reduction and, we infer, the need for human contact–ought to have been redacted–down to under 5 minutes. The unabridged version sounded a bit like an AA testimonial.
  9. The fact that no one opted-in is telling in-and-of-itself. If it didn’t work, it’s broken. I think she should adopt Charles Eisenstein’s strategy of letting people opt-in at any price–for his books and DVDs as well as his seminars. He even presents the ultimate scholarship for those who can’t afford it–just come. Opt-in/elective pricing allows for self-efficacy–the ultimate buy-in. Ryan and Deci report higher levels of engagement from participants, and higher profits (see At least she would have made a few bucks, generated a few more groupies, and propagated good-will.
  10. I didn’t recognize from the typography and color choices on her materials that the “i” in “Oas[i]s” was a palm tree, and was not alone in this. A gentleman present at the session asked me what “Ohz” is. At the time I didn’t have a clue, due to my own deficiencies in the green part of the spectrum. I’d be less cutsie with the typography, given that a percentage of the population, more-so men than women, are color-blind.

Please email me at to off-set my skepticism that anyone has actually read the aforementioned.


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