Jul 082013


The following are seven things that you will need to address when planning  your next conference to ensure that it is a successful event.

Sessions That Don’t Offer New Information
Your conference sessions should offer information that is fascinating and new. The speakers should not be rehashing information that delegates have heard at other conferences. Beware of offering content that is too general because you are trying to attract a wide audience. Consider attracting a wide audience by offering diversity in session types.  Delegates can then choose the sessions which interest them to get the most out of the conference.

Distracting Presentations
If not done correctly the method of presentation can seriously distract from the content of the session. Make sure that the presentation slides do not cause your delegates to spend more time focusing on what is happening on the screen than the actual content of the presentation. A visual presentation that is too busy may even distract the delegates from hearing what the speaker is saying.

Not Enough Electrical Outlets
Smartphones, I pads, Laptops and all the other devices that we cannot live without, need to be recharged. At a conference delegates will most likely be searching for electrical outlets where they can recharge their various devices. At a large conference,  it can be challenging to provide delegates with enough electrical outlets. Setting up a recharge station with comfortable chairs and friendly attendants will make sure that delegates always have a place where they can recharge their electrical devices.

Boring Speakers
It is not possible to motivate and inspire every delegate at every session, but it is always disappointing when a conference offers no inspiration whatsoever. Make sure there are enough motivational and inspirational speakers on your list of keynote speakers. If delegates leave the conference feeling motivated they will have fond memories of the event and feel that it was money well spent. To keep things entertaining you can consider having a surprise guest appearance by a celebrity.

No Variety in the Conference Schedule
Not everybody wants to listen to speakers the whole day. Include enough variety in your conference schedule to cater for the needs of all your delegates. Together with the main sessions of your conference you should make provision for networking sessions, workshops, breakout sessions and lessons.

Not Enough Staff to Assist Delegates
Make sure there is enough staff posted throughout the conference venue. They should be equipped to give advice on which sessions to attend and directions to the various venue halls. The staff should be friendly and easily identifiable through caps, t-shirts or other branded items.

Disorganized Registration Desk
First impressions are extremely valuable, and one of the first things delegates will deal with at the conference is the registration desk. Unfriendly staff and a disorganized registration desk can result in negative feelings towards the rest of the conference. Post a sufficient amount of friendly staff at the registration desk to assist with the registration process. They should be able to answer any questions that delegates may have. Organize the registration material alphabetically to ensure that delegates are attended to efficiently.

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