Event Management

A Proven Approach For Successful Events And Meetings 

Cambridge Consulting has been active in the field of organization effectiveness for over 20 years.  As part of our work, we specialize in assisting our clients in maximizing the value of their events, and to execute results that matter.  Over this period, the professionals at Cambridge Consulting have organized and facilitated workshops and meetings for our clients around the world.  As recognized experts in project management, we know what it takes to make these events successful, and we work with our clients to make each and every engagement exceed their needs and expectations.

We treat every engagement as a project, where we help our clients to:

  1. Define a clear outcome
  2. Identify all involved parties
  3. Understand the needs of the key stakeholders
  4. Develop a plan that will ensure success (this includes both an event logistics  plan and a meeting plan)
  5. Mange hand-offs to ensure that nothing “falls through the cracks”
  6. Develop measures for success for both the event logistics and the meeting/workshop
  7. Ensure clear communication throughout the engagement
  8. Identify and mange risks associated with the event
  9. Take a team approach to achieving the outcome, and ensure that everyone on the team has what they need to be successful

If The Event Is Important, Don’t Take Chances!

We understand that it is often the little things that make the difference between a successful event and on that is just “acceptable”.   As such, we do more than just “Murphy-proof” the plan.  We always look for unique ways to add value for the event sponsor and meeting participants.

As an example, we understand that you are thinking about investing in an event with the intent of getting participants to interact and collaborate on an important topic.  Asking people to take the time out of their busy schedules to attend a meeting means that the perceived value of the meeting must be high to justify the time away from the office.  Our primary goal in these situations is to assist in building an agenda that maximizes collaborative discussion and networking, and results in meaningful action after the meeting.  

How We Ensure Your Success

Our approach involves working to ensure that the technical goals of the meeting are clearly defined and executed.  In parallel with this effort, we take steps to ensure that the logistics requirements of each event are carefully managed. 

Our approach includes several interdependent aspects of what it takes to make these events successful.  They include:

  1. Clarify the purpose of the meeting/workshop: this step is often the most important as it serves to ensure a targeted session, and it makes it easier to manage participant expectations.  It is the basis for all actions that follow
  2. Identify the event team: In order to achieve the purpose of the meeting, having the right people involved along the way becomes critical.
  3. Meeting agenda: This is the primary reason for the event, so the ability to answer the question “What will we do to achieve the purpose of the meeting?” is essential to ensuring a successful event. It includes what will be covered, why, how, when, and by whom.
  4. Venue selection: The best meeting site will one that will contribute to the meeting purpose within the cost and logistics constraints of the event.
  5. Develop event plan and timeline: This includes everything that must happen before, during and after the event.
  6. Develop a risk management plan: Important items “fall through the cracks” by neglect, not by intent. As such. It is important to think through what could go wrong, and plan preventive and contingent measures in advance.  Having a “plan B” can be a critical factor in making an event successful.
  7. Develop a communication plan: It should be assumed that all stakeholders involved in the event (including the sponsor, participants, site personnel, etc.) are very busy, A good communication plan includes all the notifications, reminders and confirmations needed to minimize missed messages and commitments.

A more detailed description of what each of these elements entails is included below.

How We Cover All The Details

  1. Clarify the purpose of the meeting/workshop:
  • Identify specific event outcome(s)
  • Identify event stakeholders (e.g., participants, event sponsors, meeting site personnel, administrative, etc.)
  • Identify stakeholder needs and wants through interviews, meetings and surveys
  • Identify meeting/workshop deliverables (i.e., what will be produced and delivered as a result of the meeting, and who will receive each deliverable)
  • Agree on measures of success for the event, and how each will be captured Identify constraints associated with the event (e.g., cost, duration, meeting content, etc.)
  • Identify assumptions being made regarding the event
  1. Identify the event team, including:
  • Event sponsor(s)
  • Content presenters and subject matter experts
  • Meeting facilitator
  • Administrative support personnel
  • Meeting site personnel
  1. Meeting agenda:
  • Develop draft meeting agenda, timeline and deliverables
  • Submit meeting agenda for approval; revise as needed
  • Determine who will participate in each agenda item
  • Determine material needs to support the agenda
  1. Venue selection:
  • Evaluate potential meeting venues and recommend the best site
  • Confirm site selection, and administer appropriate contracts with the venue
  • Arrange for site set-up and breakdown
  • Make hotel arrangements as needed
  1. Develop event plan and timeline to include:
  • Review of and adherence to relevant policies, procedures, etc.
  • Any pre- and post-meeting activities
  • Meeting facility requirements and layout
  • Travel support and administrative activities (e.g., air, hotel, directions, etc.)
  • Administrative activities, approvals, documentation requirements, etc.
  • Pre-meeting reading and other preparation activities for participants
  • Pre-meeting preparation material development, production and distribution
  • Meeting material development, production and shipment to site
  • Arrangements for meals and refreshments
  • Arrangements for networking and other social events
  • Post-meeting reports, action items and data distribution
  • Post-meeting administrative items (e.g., managing facility invoices, participant travel expenses, etc.)  
  1. Develop a risk management plan to include:
  • Identification of significant risks and mitigating actions
  • Identification and management plan for key hand-offs within the plan
  • A RACI chart showing responsibilities and interdependencies within the plan
  1. Develop a communication plan to include:
  • Initial communication to participants describing the event
  • Formal invitation to participate
  • Confirmation of participants
  • Delivery of meeting logistics information to participants
  • On-site registration and assistance (e.g., with hotels, travel, meeting support, etc.)

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