Meeting planning was ranked as the fifth most stressful job by CareerCast. Anyone in the industry can immediately tell you why. A million time sensitive tasks need to get done and we’re constantly under pressure to produce bigger and better events each year. It seems nearly impossible to find time to fit in all of the work and to have enough brain power left over to be an effective strategist.
We all have a good sense of the tasks required, and we love crossing off items on our tactical to-do lists. But our role as meeting planners offers the opportunity to be so much more than mere tacticians. The industry is changing and while content is king, experiences are what drive interaction and connection.
But with limited hours in the day, it’s hard to find time to think. We need strategies that allow us to focus on more abstract things like memorable experiences, learning and community.
Here are four simple strategies that have helped me create the time and space necessary to focus on the bigger picture, on creating meaningful experiences, which is the key to becoming a successful event architect:
- Don’t be afraid of technology: Dive in and use it to streamline tasks. Whether it’s web-based apps like Basecamp, Asana, or Trello for project management; content management software that can act as your virtual speaker assistant; or setting up rules in Outlook or filters in Gmail to help you manage your insane inbox — let technology take care of simple tasks and reporting so you don’t have to.
- Don’t open up your email for the first hour of each day: Select one strategic goal or experience you want to craft. Take it from someone who never came into work earlier than 10 AM but always worked late. An hour when you first start your day without the distraction of emails popping in can provide you with space to focus on creating memorable experiences.
- Use integrated solutions: Technology can help streamline tasks, but managing 10 different vendors for your event technology needs can suck up hours of your valuable time with integration work and testing. Find solution providers that either provide all your event tech under one roof or that have existing partners they can leverage to provide you with a seamless solution.
- Find ways of marketing your event with dynamically generated content: Use Twitter widgets for displaying the latest news and updates around your event. Use your content management software to dynamically push content and speaker changes to your website.
Having more time is every meeting planner’s dream. The good news is that you can create more time. By streamlining our tasks, and making effective use of technology, we can strengthen our ability to create impactful experiences that connect people and change the world through events. To your success as an event architect!
Want to make better use of your time? Sign up for a demo and see how Hubb can help you manage your event content in 65% less time!