Many reading this blog will either be full-time conference planners or someone who has been asked to plan anything from a Board Retreat to an award dinner. There will be all kinds of budgets and lists that you will be responsible for, but there is one item that should be on the top of your list…Event Purpose/Objective.
If your event/conference does not have an agreed upon Purpose/Objective how will you or those you are planning this for know whether it was successful? At first some may think “Well if people show up it was successful”. Well let’s just say that is the most basic “Objective” but let’s dive a little deeper.
During your first planning meeting, make it your first task to discuss with you and your stakeholder the Purpose/Objective of the event. At first have everyone discuss and voice their ideas. Some of these may be:
- Inform and update on industry happening
- Product Releases
- like minded individuals discussing topics and exchanging ideas
- Publicity or to build brand awareness
Above is just a small example of the most common reasons for events/conferences.
Now did you know now that now you have a Purpose/Object you need to make sure you can set SMART Goals to make sure you can measure your success.
Event Purpose/Objective should be:
S – Specific: What outcome, by when. For example, enrolling 30% of visiting high school students for the 2016 semester by July 15th.
M – Measurable: How much – the hard numbers we can measure, such as 100 students visited our campus and 30 of them enrolled in fall classes.
A – Achievable: Not only is the objective achievable, we’re also relatively likely to accomplish it. This isn’t a stretch incentive on Kickstarter, after all. This is an objective we’re confident telling our boss we can achieve.
R – Relevant: The objective relates back to our company’s goals. If it doesn’t, it isn’t our objective anymore.
T – Timely: Timely means we can create a timeline that defines the beginning and the end of the period in which we are measuring. There’s a start and stop point, and we can measure the change between the two.
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