I remember one client I had a few years ago. It was the
first time I’d worked with them. They were a government department, and were
planning on laying off a few hundred people. I sat in the briefing and looked
at their plans for the event, and I remember thinking it wasn’t going to work.
So what did I do? Do I settle with their plans, or rock the boat and tell them
what I thought?
Managing conferences and events isn’t just about being
organised. It’s about being competitive and giving your clients, and their
customers, what they want. So, after two decades in the industry, these are my
tips to making the most of a career in conferences.
1. Fortune favours the brave
Never be afraid to ask questions. Even if the questions seem
like you’re snooping. Asking the right questions about the event, their customers
and their ideal outcome can completely change the essence, look and feel of a
2. Knowledge is power
The only way you can keep ahead of competition is by knowing
the industry inside out. Do you know who the major AV players are? The best
hotels and locations? The top caterers? By keeping up-to-date with the new and
unique you’ll be able to offer suggestions that stand out.
3. Take care
It’s not just about the initial success of an event.
Obviously, it’s always your aim to create something people will talk about for
weeks and months after. But very often, the people you’re dealing with are
under an incredible amount of pressure. You need to become everything they want
and an integral part of their team.
4. Add value
When you’re given a brief, talk through what your client
wants to achieve. Find out who their customers are. Why they’re holding it. And
meet with everyone in the team to get their viewpoints. Once you have as full a
picture as you possibly can, you’re in a better position to suggest new ideas
and add value. When I do this, it’s definitely worth it and adds a real return
on their investment.
5. Know your limits
The event I talked about above could have upset a lot of
people if it was handled badly. I knew I didn’t have enough experience to deal
with such a sensitive issue, so I brought in a trusted consultant and together
we developed a strategy that would help everyone through that difficult time.
The event went from a negative announcement to focusing on the future, and was
a real success.
– Myfanwy Quine, Managing Director, MVision Events. Any comments? Email email@example.com