How to organise the perfect conference

Egal, ob Sie eine Konferenz, Tagung oder Schulung planen – Sie möchten, dass Ihre Veranstaltung ein voller Erfolg wird. Wir helfen Ihnen, eine perfekte Tagung zu organisieren.

Planning a conference is a complicated business. There are so many things to think of before, during and after the big day (or days) itself. Use these tips from Secretary Today to organise the perfect conference.

Choosing a venue

  • Start planning early. It can take you up to a year to plan a big conference.
  • Book the venue early. Remember that between October and December many venues are booked for year-end functions. Also, trade fairs may interfere with your planning.
  • Choose a venue in a central location. Consider how out-of-town delegates are going to get to and from the airport or railway station.
  • Is there adequate and safe parking at the venue?
  • Are there sufficient break-out areas for small group work?

What you need to ask the hotel (or other venue)

  • What is included in the delegate package?
  • Is / are flip charts and pens, white boards, video projectors, overhead projectors, a laptop, presentation mouse / microphones / a PA system included in the delegate package?
  • Will they arrange to signpost the rooms?
  • Will they make sure the room is aired during the coffee breaks?

The proceedings

  • Don't try to pack too much into one day. Delegates will appreciate having a few spare moments to network. Indeed for many, networking might be more important than the convention itself.
  • If you have many speakers, you will need a Master of Ceremonies to keep proceedings on track and to introduce speakers.

Deciding on the seating layout

Decide how you want everyone to be seated.

  • Schoolroom-style seating is the most popular, especially when delegates need to take notes.
  • Cinema-style seating can make note-taking uncomfortable, but can accommodate many more delegates.
  • A U-shaped arrangement is best for a small group or for interactive forums, where delegates need to see each other.

For emergencies

Make sure you have – or know where to find

  • a first aid kit including basic medication (pain killers, plasters, anti-acids)
  • a copy of speakers’ presentations on a laptop
  • a back-up copy of presentations on CD, DVD or USB stick.

Secretary Today
Perfekte britische und amerikanische Korrespondenz, Gespräche, Telefonate, Geschäftsbesuche und sicherer Small Talk

Make the delegates feel welcome right from the start

Next time you organise a conference or a convention, make sure your participants feel really welcome right from the start with these tips.

  • Send detailed 'how to get there' instructions by email.
  • Make sure there is a special room where delegates can put their coats and their luggage when they arrive.
  • Organise enough personnel to welcome the delegates individually and show them to their seats.
  • Decide what kind of name tags or lanyards your delegates will need. Have these pre-printed and ready at registration. Be sure to have some blank tags in case there are any errors or changes have to be made.
  • Place the convention programme, a notepad and pencil and an evaluation sheet along with the delegate’s name tag on the seat.
  • If the convention is too big to show everyone to their seats individually,
  • write the appropriate seat number and row on the back of the name tag.

Have a mobile office with you

Prepare a briefcase with a mini-office, including

scissors – stapler – staples – hole-punch – plastic folders – paper clips – pens and pencils – erasers – Tipp-Ex – pencil sharpener – glue – felt-tip pens – flip-chart pens – paper – Sellotape

venue Veranstaltungsort 
delegate package Tagungspauschale 
video projector Beamer 
to air lüften 
Master of Ceremonies Moderator 
anti-acids Mittel gegen Sodbrennen 
lanyard Schleife, Bändel 
evaluation sheet Beurteilungsbogen 
stapler Tacker 
hole-punch Locher 
paper clip Büroklammer 
eraser Radiergummi 
pencil sharpener Bleistift Spitzer 
glue Klebstoff 
felt-tip pens Filzschreiber 
sellotape Tesafilm