16. Conduct Forum

This is the moment you have been waiting for. All of the hard and long work put forward will now be displayed to a great number of people. The main thing you want is for everything to run smoothly. Arrangements should have been made to have sufficient people to do various functions throughout the proceedings of the forum. It’s a good idea to divide the responsibilities among these people so that not one person has to handle too much and can focus on his or her specific task. Some of the responsibilities of these people are:

  • Greet guest as they arrive
  • Distribute nametags, handouts, and other material or literature
  • Coordinate with audio/visual personnel
  • Coordinate with chairman, organizing committee, moderators, and speakers on their needs
  • Light and lapel microphone responsibility
  • Coordinate with facilities on food placement and service
  • Technical writer to keep notes for final report

The more you make the attendees feel comfortable the more they will enjoy the forum. Not everything will go as planned. Try to have a mental picture of what you plan to do if and when something goes wrong. A good forum is one that is able to recover from problems in an efficient and effective manner.

Lessons Learned:

  • Be prepared for the worst
  • Have sufficient personnel to handle specific tasks and don’t overload them with too many responsibilities
  • Know your surroundings in case of emergencies or if someone needs directions