I was thrilled to discover MeetingsNet.com earlier this month, a wonderful resource for Meeting and Event professionals to network and find the latest industry news and information. If you have not had an opportunity to explore their site, I highly recommend doing so.
I appreciate their articles for planners that provide sound advice and tips on locating and managing the most ideal venues for their event. The first step is for planners to identify their objectives. Here are is a list of excellent questions to ask directly from an article written by Wesley Harrington and Hugh K. Lee: Setting Objectives Before You Select a Site
There are 10 main things to consider when setting meeting goals:
1. What is the purpose of the meeting? Can we create a clear written statement of why this event is to be conducted? Does it agree with the top priorities of our organization?
2. Can we establish quantifiable goals for this event and clear thresholds of achievement by which we can determine its success? Make the objective specific, measurable, attainable and realistic, relevant, and time-based.
3. Whom are we trying to attract? Identify all stakeholders in the meeting (attendees, organization leaders, facilities professionals, etc.), and set priorities. Which group’s needs come first?
4. What do I want attendees to remember most about the event? Can we summarize the experiences our attendees should have?
5. What can prior history teach us about this meeting? Is there information that would be useful to us in determining the potential for success – or failure – of this meeting?
6. Who else has conducted the same type of meeting, and what can we learn from their experiences? Talking with meeting planning peers can be a big help in setting effective and realistic goals.
7. Do we have the resources necessary to achieve our goals? Can we successfully conduct the event with the staff we have, or do we need to consider outsourcing part or all of it? How much can we rely on volunteers, and how will we go about recruiting them?
8. Have we sought input and commitment from our staff? Have we asked previous attendees for their comments and suggestions?
9. How will we reach our intended audience? What type of marketing and promotion will we do to spread the word about the event?
10. How will we monitor and determine the success of this effort? Develop measurement tools that address the pre-meeting process, all on-site meeting elements, and the various post-meeting outcomes.