What I'm Learning about events.
Anna Couston - Events Coordinator Soul Survivor NSW/ACT
Our Soul Survivor conferences, like any event, have me both excited and overwhelmed at the same time. It comes with the territory of event planning. Where do I begin? How do I not forget something crucial? Will it work? The endless questions. But amidst the ocean of uncertainty, I have found some security in these following landmarks.
P U R P O S E .
Before setting off on the to-do list, stop and get the purpose of your event clear. Not only will this give you perspective when you’re lost in admin world, but it will also fuel your passion for why you are doing this. Very important.
M A PI TO U T .
A timeline will become your best friend. Spend a good amount of time at this stage. Schedule meetings, deadlines for promotional material, brainstorm sessions, budget strategy, creative meetings etc etc. Google ‘event timelines’ to see if there are similar scaffolds that you could use or help trigger your mind with things you may have forgotten.
T E A M .
Invest into building a team around you. Design a structure that allows for layers and expansion. Each person should know what their role is and who they check in with during the event. Schedule team meetings in the lead up to start to build a team culture.
C U L T U R E .
You and your team will set the culture of the event. Culture is made up of a number of intangibles that create the vibe. They are based on your values that you have embedded into the purpose of your event and into your team over time. This is where all the little details matter - the high-vis parking person, the easy rego process, the coffee cups, the note on the back of the bathroom door – it all adds to the experience and creates the culture of your event. If this is important to you and your organisation, make sure to allow enough space in your timeline, as these small details are often the first thing to get skipped when you’re under the pump.
Events are one of those things that are easily labelled as very “stressful”. Whilst they are definitely challenging and stretching for everyone involved, I have found it extremely helpful to break it down into small achievable goals with these 4 areas in mind. The best thing about events is the impact it has on everyone who partakes and how rewarding it feels!