Conventions are great. You gather thousands of people who are normally competing for the same business opportunity, give a few speeches, provide some training, throw in a bit of a store, and soon they will all be working for you. A few of them may become offended and join the other guy, but still, conventions are great!
Currently, the company I am working for, as my day job, is holding a convention for all of our associates. Every year they try to outdo the previous year. Because of the economic times, and the desire to be profitable, the allowed budget was cut a bit. So obviously, some things had to be cut. Unfortunately, one of the things cut seems to be good sense.
When we hold the Overlord Convention, there are a few things which I promise will be followed. Some of this list includes the following:
1 Do not inform IT of your plans for network, computers, security, etc. an hour before it needs to be setup.
2 Name badges are great, it allows interaction to be personalized. Make sure it is easy to identify staff from the masses at a simple glance. Helps security out a lot!
3 Have the store layout and all displays pre-planned out. This greatly facilitates setting up the store, and also keeps murderous thoughts out of the employees’ minds.
4 Properly identify and lock down the employee break area. Non employees are not welcome and hurt the morale of those you depend upon.
5 Make sure all staff members know the company planned events, as well as other events which may be happening in the area. We want our staff to appear intelligent, not like a gathering of country bumpkins.
6 Make sure all areas are properly identified. If you want attendees to visit an area, it helps to be able to find said area.
7 Provide adequate training for staff members. If they are expected to demonstrate something they should know how to use it. Hands on experience is probably a good thing.
8 The biggest mistake I have seen is one person being in charge of too many things and not sharing that information with those who could help. If people are aware of something needing to be setup beforehand, then all components, tools, and man power can be pre-arranged.
9 Small things will always creep up that need to be addressed. This is to be expected. Do not shun help. You will accomplish more if you would spend a few minutes to explain the issue then if you were to just do it yourself, ignoring other problems which may be occurring.
All this being said, let me just point out one small fact. Although conventions are great and important, I sure do hate working at them.