There are two giant questions in this post which may seem very similar, but are, in fact, quite different.
1. Why are you having this meeting/retreat/event? Is it to feel closer to God? Is it a staff retreat with 30 of your coworkers? Is it to learn a specific skill, trait, or idea? Is it an annual conference? Or is it because you were able to book a big-time speaker and are focusing the whole event around them?
Whatever the reason, you will need to consider it throughout the other four key elements of organizing this event. If you want to have a small event where everyone gets close to one another, you won’t want to invite everyone on the Internet and rent a giant lecture hall. If you’re focusing on one key subject like writing or painting? You must make sure to advertise to people who are interested in the topic. Keep your central theme in mind throughout the whole planning process so you don’t lose focus on what’s really important.
2. Why are your attendees coming to this event? To learn? To grow? They have to? Whatever the reasons are, it’s critical this issue be addressed throughout the planning process. Once you determine why you’re having the event, you need to think of why your potential attendees would sign up and actually show up. Make it worth their while. Whatever your theme may be, make sure your attendees will leave the conference with a greater knowledge about the topic. Making your attendees happy should be your number one goal, so keep that on your mind at all times!
In my opinion, I think you should know who is speaking, what the conference is about, and why you’re really having this event before you start figuring out where and when. That way, you know exactly how you want the event to be, which will help you find the perfect place to hold the conference. Oh, and remember to be a little bit flexible on everything, because something always happens differently than you originally planned.
I hope this series has been helpful to you and let us know if you’d like to see a series on any other topics, we’re here to serve.