Event Planning Checklist by Andrew Maxwell of PlanAnEvent.ORG

Charlotte, NC

PRE-EVENT PLANNING

  • Define event objectives and goals
  • Construct the budget and program
  • Choose dates
  • Research and book meeting site location
  • Develop an event blue print
  • Contact hotels, convention center, main venues and negotiate details
  • Recruit event team
  • Source and contact sponsors
  • Follow-up and confirm sponsorship
  • Contact service and support service companies and get proposals
  • Find and confirm speakers and entertainment
  • Finalize speaker presentation, get bio/photo info and arrange travel and accommodation
  • Create an advertising and promotional plan
  • Design signage and printed materials
  • Establish equipment requirements; stage, lights, tables and chairs, A/V equipment, podiums, garbage/recycling
  • Confirm room set-ups, supplies and menus
  • Source and order amenities and gifts
  • Submit rooming list and confirm arrangements
  • Set up financial administration and a financial tracking system
  • Review and set-up security needs
  • Book and confirm travel and accommodations arrangements
  • Generate a buzz on site. Create and Post event information on the company website and Social Media outlets
  • Develop and produce publicity pieces, invitations, programs, etc.
  • Release any media and press announcements
  • Produce a Plan B where needed

WEEK BEFORE PLANNING

  • Finalize event blueprint and script
  • Have a team meeting to review ALL details
  • Brief volunteers, event staff, hosts and greeters
  • Provide food and beverage catering numbers
  • Create any seating plans required
  • Finalize registration list and name badges
  • Ship meeting materials and supplies to the Hotel/Convention Center
  • Reconfirm equipment requirements; the stage, the lights, tables and chairs, A/V equipment, podiums, garbage/recycling

EVENT WEEK PLANNING

  • Confirm meeting materials, supplies, gifts and amenities have arrived
  • Confirm food and beverage catering numbers
  • Review event/meeting details and do a complete event/meeting space walk through and make any last minute changes
  • Ensure event/meeting info is posted on the hotel function board
  • Make sure signage is in place
  • Confirm media attending
  • Be sure the registration/media area is set up and stocked with supplies
  • Reconfirm Service and support service companies, speakers and entertainment

EVENT DAY PLANNING

  • Be sure you have all the necessary documents; lists, keys, telephone numbers, passes, badges and VIP info on hand
  • Check-in with the team to ensure everything is set
  • Confirm function room set-up
  • Review banquet checks daily

POST EVENT PLANNING

  • Meet with your event contact(s) to review events/meetings and charges and identify staff that have provided exceptional service
  • Conduct a post event survey to understand what worked and what didn’t with participants
  • Make arrangements to ship materials back to the office
  • Send thank you and appreciation notes
  • Conduct a detailed evaluation
  • Update the budget

 

Key to Good Video Conferencing in Charlotte is Very High Speed Internet

Some video conferencing options with pros and cons:

WebEx
More info: WebEx Desktop Video Conferencing (Web Based)

Description: Web-based conferencing software

Great if you want to:
Lead a more formal presentation session
Allow attendees to connect without having to create accounts or do a complicated installation
Do extensive, detailed, full-screen screen sharing
Record your session
Not a good option if you need to:
If you need to set up a meeting now and don't yet have a presenter account (request process has 1 business day turnaround time). Once you have a presenter account, you can set up meetings yourself.
Interact with several people in the same room, unless they all call in from one computer.

Google Hangouts
More info: Google Hangouts
Description: Web-based video chat with up to 15 people, including extra features

Great if you want to:
Meet with up to 15 people who have Gmail accounts (Brown, gmail.com, or other Google Apps domains)
Collaborate on Google Docs
Do basic screen sharing (not full screen)
Have meetings that are either scheduled (in a calendar event) or spontaneous
Have an informal and collaborative meeting
Not a great option if you need to:
Meet with people who do not have Google accounts (you could call their phones, but not video chat)
Do extensive, detailed screen sharing
Connect with people who do not have Google accounts
Interact with several people in the same room, unless they all call in from one computer.

Polycom
More info: Polycom/Tandberg Video Conferencing and the Movi / Jabber Clients

Great if you want to:
Meet with a group of people in a room with Polycom / Tandberg video conferencing equipment (list of rooms)
Take advantage of a higher resolution video broadcast, such as for a lab demonstration
Not a good option if you need to:
Get participants up and running quickly remotely or with loaner computers – it’s a software that needs to be installed.

Skype
Skype is essentially a freemium voice-over-IP service, aka a VoIP, that allows registered users to communicate online via online video calling, instant messaging, and mobile chat.
Though relatively young in the grand scheme of things, the software application is arguably the best method for users to communicate long distance, whether they are looking to conduct multi-party business meetings or merely send short, video messages between friends and family. The software requires no more than an internal or external camera and microphone, often built-in your computer or smartphone, and an active Internet connection. Calls and messages within Skype are free, but those to landline and mobile phones will cost varying amounts depending on the region and accompanying subscription plan. Although some cost more than others, paying for the premium services is typically far cheaper than purchasing a dedicated phone or texting plan on your own.