Conference Disasters and How to Deal with Them
When you are holding a conference or an event Murphy’s Law does apply and there is always a chance that something will go wrong. Sometimes, no matter how well prepared and organised you are – things go wrong. The key is to be aware of what could go wrong and to have a plan for what to do if the worst occurs.
Let’s take a look at some of the things that often go wrong at events at Cheshire conference venues and how you can deal with them.
A Speaker Drops Out
You’ve invited a great speaker to your event and you are really looking forward to their talk, but at the last minute they fail to arrive. Perhaps they have let you down or perhaps it was beyond their control – such as an illness or a delayed flight. Either way, you are now stuck with a bunch of conference guests who were expected to see this speaker and who will be disappointed.
The best way to avoid this is to have a back-up guest that you can call upon to give a talk instead. This should be someone who has availability on the day and who is within close access to the event location. Of course, make sure that the talk they will give is as close as possible in theme to the one that was originally advertised so that conference attendees will still find it interesting and helpful.
What happens when your speaker is just about to give a presentation, but the Wifi disconnects so they can’t give the live internet demonstration on stage? Sometimes when you rely on technology it can let you down, leaving your presenters to umm and ah onstage while everyone else scrambles to fix the problem.
The key is to always have a backup. For example, if the speaker is planning on doing a live internet presentation they should also have prepared screenshots of the website they were planning to show so that they can still continue with their talk if the Wifi fails. Microphones failing is also a common issue, so have a handheld wireless microphone close to the stage that you can run up to the speaker if necessary.
Also, make sure that you allow plenty of time to test your equipment before the conference. You might even want to give it a full dry run just to make sure that everything is working properly before the big day – it never hurts to be safe.
Not Enough People Show Up
This is the nightmare of an event organiser – you spend months planning an event but on the day a disappointing amount of people show up. This is a common problem with free events – because people don’t have the financial commitment to showing up. You might want to consider charging for tickets, as this will cut down your amount of no-shows. Ask people to register and confirm their attendance.
Of course, even when people have paid for tickets there will be some that can’t make it on the day of the conference. You can likely assume that 20% won’t make it and you can either oversell your tickets or create a stand-by-list.
Something Happens to Your Venue
What do you do if disaster strikes your venue right before the conference – such as flooding, fire or storm damage? Losing your venue is a huge issue and it can really mess with your plans, so it is important to have a back-up venue in mind just in case this happens.
Take your time to scout out the local area for a few more options and see if there is anywhere else you could relocate to in an emergency. Make sure that you contact your attendees as soon as possible and let them know, so that they get the news and know where to show up.
These are just a few of the issues that can go wrong when you are planning a conference, such as at Carden Park in Cheshire. By thinking ahead and being prepared you will be able to avoid them or deal with them if they happen. Disaster can strike at any time, but it doesn’t have to ruin your plans of having a fantastic conference!