5 TIPS ON COMMON SCHEDULE MODIFICIATIONS
Modifying an Event Agenda
Lorena Armenta, Assistant Event Manager
28 April 2017
Creating an event or meeting agenda is a task that should take priority as it could have an important impact on your meeting attendance and costs. Many clients forget that changing minor details will bring about many other implications. We understand there are circumstances in which your event or meeting agenda will have to be modified substantially so we’d like to offer a few key things to take into consideration when modifying the dates, start or end times, and even the length of your event or meeting.
Families and individuals often take advantage of a holiday and make a vacation out of it by extending their days off. We recently attended an event that was rescheduled as the original date was around a holiday and not a lot of people were going to be in town for it. Fortunately, this was noticed in time.
If your event requires a large number of your attendees to travel, consider the day of the week they would be traveling to get to your event. It is widely known that flying on Tuesdays and Saturdays tends to be cheaper while traveling on Fridays and Mondays can be more expensive. You may be able to encourage attendance by starting your meetings on Wednesdays so your attendees are able to travel on Tuesdays, making it more cost effective for them.
We’d like to offer a few key things to take into consideration if you must modify your agenda.
Another factor related to travel is hotel availability. We recently encountered a situation which almost resulted in displaced conference attendees due to a change in conference start time. With an earlier start time, more attendees than anticipated needed rooms at a hotel which was close to being sold out.
“It is widely known that flying on Tuesdays and Saturdays tends to be cheaper while traveling on Fridays and Mondays can be more expensive.”
4. Meals and Breaks.
As you design your meeting agenda, build in meal and break times at reasonable intervals. It can be draining to sit through long periods of time for a meeting or program, especially through traditional meal times. Attendees tend to lose interest when hunger and exhaustion kick in; sometimes all that is needed to combat these is a break with light refreshments to break up your program.
5. Room set ups.
When planning a meeting which includes a meal in the same room as part of the program, allow time for staff to set up. Your set up preference will determine how much time the staff will need to set up the room. For example, if you want the silverware set right before the meal rather than for it to remain set from meeting start time to end, you may want to strategically factor in a break that would allow venue staff to set up. Allowing time to change the room set up or refresh the room becomes even more important when dealing with large attendee numbers.
These are just a few areas where your agenda and changes to it may have an effect you were not considering. We are trained to think of these things and make it a point to bring up these challenges to our clients when they are planning their meetings. Have you considered any of this as a part of your own agenda building process?