Friday, June 14, 2013

Keep Paddling ‘Til You Hit the Beach

A state government executive, serving for an effective Governor, once told your humble blogger that the Governor continuously urged his cabinet to “run through the tape” with their initiatives.  Your humble blogger recently summoned his aquatic version of this track aphorism, learned in kayak racing, which applies to event production.
Everyone is paddling hard at the start of the event
With the MyRWA Herring Run & Paddle finish line in sight, I reminded myself “Keep paddling  ‘til you hit the beach!”  I knew that that the end looked closer than it was and that I might be able to pick-off a competitor or at least knock minutes off my time by keeping up my pace and focusing to the finish.  I came so close to passing three guys that even though I was exhausted after racing for 12 miles, I was wishing for a longer race!
Every event is a show and in show business, you can’t stop performing until your reach the finish.
  • Plan to end strong.  We've all had fiascoes at the start of an event and any pro knows about the importance of detailed planning, drills and rehearsals to make sure the first experiences of a live event are good ones.  But too often people let events fizzle by failing to apply the same level of attention to the final impressions.
  • Make sure your contracts fit the plan.  Your arrangements for venue, permits, onsite services, and transportation need to be checked against your final plan.  You don’t want to have your grand finale cut short because the buses are leaving.
  • Keep it crisp.  Even if your event involves participants relaxing at the end, keep all program elements tightly scripted and well supported.
  •  Keep the body heat up.  If your venue is outdoors make sure it is not going to be uncomfortably cold.  Don't let your participants feel lonely - adjust your venues for the normal declines in numbers toward the end.
  • Keep the spot light on your program.  Don’t neglect lighting especially in outdoor venues.  Don’t allow distractions like a noisy breakdown operation to mar your conclusion.
  •  Keep testing all equipment.  Your tech. crews may be thinking about the big job of breaking down but everyone needs to focus on the more important job of ending right.
  • Don’t let your team go home early, in spirit or in reality.  If you are presenting or sponsoring an event make sure your visible representatives are still visible at the end.  At the end of a conference I advise my team, and especially the most senior people to be right at the door thanking participants and encouraging them to return again. 
  • Keep selling as long as you see a customer.  Take advantage of event magic as long as you are face-to-face.
  • Don’t schedule a debriefing too early.  Nobody (least of all your humble blogger) wants to hear what went wrong right after the show.  Instead keep thanking everybody for what went right.

Congrats to Andrius Zinkevichus won the 12 mile race with a time of
1:36:47 which is an 8:04 minute per mile pace!
Ending well is one of the most important parts of any communication or experience.  Let me end by reinforcing that I am here to help.  If you have any questions about moving hearts and minds with events give me a call at (781) 729-8611.

Labels: , , ,


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home

Powered by Blogger

Subscribe to
Posts [Atom]