Monday, September 8, 2014

Event Model Generation

Tahira and Ruud at MPI WEC in Minneapolis 2014
Does your meeting planning team struggle with getting buy-in? Do you wrestle with dreaming up new ideas for your events?  What if there was a tool that fostered open discussion, encouraged creativity and still focused on meeting your business objectives?

I began my exploration of meeting design and how it can change the parameters of how people meet and more importantly what they get out of it several years ago. I have continued to enjoy the evolution, which for me led to co-authoring this chapter in the ninth edition of the CIC Manual, collaborating on EventCamp Vancouver and meeting people from around the world who share my passion.

As we delve into human nature, environment creation, presentation delivery and interaction based on neuroscience to increase engagement, analytics and return on investment of meetings, it always comes back to objectives before design.  There is always a challenge to derive the objectives and create an easy to understand story to present to your stakeholders about how you will use a meeting (or incentive event) to fulfill these objectives.

During this journey of learning I came across TNOC and the smart, forward thinking Ruud Janssen. About two years ago Ruud introduced me to the book Business Model Generation, a pre-cursor to what has now become his newest venture with Roel Friessen Event Model Generation.   This is a process which encapsulates all the information you want to collect about your event and its reasons for being and KPIs, and allows you to put it together in a simple visual presentation to share with your stakeholders. This is an incredibly simplified explanation, and because they are REALLY good at telling their own story please see this link for more detailed information.

FAQ's about #EMGcanvas =  #EventCanvas

Why do I think this is cool enough to write about?  There is always a need to be able to explain why an event is the best choice - whether as a marketing tool, a sales driver, a fundraiser or as the best way to deliver content and networking connections to your stakeholders, vendors and participants as examples. In 20+ years of producing meetings and events "EMG" is the best tool I have seen for getting everyone on what is now literally "the same page" - a one - page concept for success.  I have gone through this process on smaller events and have found it very useful - I can only imagine if this was enterprise-wide how impactful it can be to consistency in storytelling through your event touchpoints!  I am excited to see them bringing this to America at what is arguably the biggest industry experience of the year (IMEX).  Yes there is a cost for this, as they have assessed a value for the content you will return to your organization with, and is reflective of the time spent bringing this to fruition, and the expertise of the presenters in delivery.  In an industry where we often don't pay speakers (and we are not alone) and at a show with a focus on a hosted buyer program there are risks in this and I applaud all the organizations who will take risks for quality education.  

ps There is a good chance they will show up with Swiss Chocolate. (hint hint)