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A Strategic Plan…for my annual meeting?

by John, on August 20, 2021

Most organizations invest time developing a strategic plan to ensure they set a course to achieve their goals and advance their missions. Why shouldn’t we apply the same discipline to our annual conference? After all, it’s one of our most valued and visible member benefits and for many associations, it also generates a significant amount of money.

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But if this isn’t enough of a reason, the pandemic surely is. In its wake we have been left with more questions than answers about what our conferences should and could look like in the future. This upheaval has everyone scrambling to find solutions, sometimes with different priorities. How do you handle volunteer leadership that wants to deliver a fully live-streamed conference, for example, while staff is losing sleep over production costs and ensuring a profitable event? Traditionalists may think we’ll slide right back to a pre-pandemic meeting experience and cadence, while innovators see this as an opportunity to explore new ways to deliver content and event experiences. The disruption of the past 18 months has generated differing views for the future, which if not addressed and aligned, is a recipe for missed expectations and a whole lot of frustration.

Sounds like we need a plan: market research to clarify attendee needs, alignment of all stakeholders on a future vision, key priorities and goals identified, and a road map to help us achieve them. When we row in the same direction, we get there faster.

#helpingassociationsthrive #myb #liveevents #strategicplan

Topics:MeetingsNEWTHINKGrowth & StrategyAssociations