Steal And Adapt These Double Gulp-Worthy Ideas For Your Next Conference

Steal Like An Artist

Most conference organizers and event professionals are always looking for the next great idea.

I’ve recently come across several set-off-the-fireworks awesome event ideas. Consider borrowing them.

And if you do steal them, make sure that you understand the principles underneath the issues they address. As well as how to adapt them to your context. Or you’ll fail at implementation!

So go ahead and be a creative kleptomaniac as you adopt and adapt these gulp-worthy ideas.

The Coffee Cantina

The MPI SEC 2014 Conference offered it’s attendees a fantastic coffee-house community hub. They took a large ballroom and transformed it into the gathering place for the entire conference experience. It became home base where attendees went to mix and mingle during breaks and before and after sessions. The room contained a coffee bar, an ice-cream bar, an adult beverage bar, a small stage for live music, a dj and multiple unique seating arrangements from private intimate settings, to large upscale family style tables and benches. The Coffeehouse Lounge, as it was called, spilled into the hallway with public and private seating areas and recharge stations as well.

MPI SEC secured several sponsors to help with the lounge including AFR Event Furnishings, Bombshell Events, Bonaventure Resort And Spa, Café Ala Carte South Florida, Cold Stone Creamery, Cort Event Furnishings, Just Bars, Koncept Events, Show Technology Inc. and more.

Issue Coffeehouse Lounge Solved:

Helping attendees find their community, network and share with each other through informal learning. Great connection zone that was centrally located to all conference events. Too often conferences don’t provide a common area where people can gather and sit with each other for informal conversations.

HighNotes Keynotes

Instead of just throwing four general sessions together without any rhyme or reason OnlinelearningConference focuses on one big issue: what’s often missing from eLearning, connection to learning and story. Their four keynotes all deal with how to connect with learners more. Each keynote presenter brings a different aspect to storytelling, instructional design for connections, action mapping and creativity. Reframing conference general sessions as HighNotes and intentionally threading them around a larger attendee issue is a sure-fire way to help an entire industry move forward and progress. Several of the HighNotes presenters also provide deep-dive or breakout sessions.

Issue HighNotes Solves:

Intentionality with threading conference content and driving solutions to one large industry issue that all conference attendees have.

Don’t Dine Alone Mixer

The organizers for the OnlineLearningConference understand that not every attendee travels with their colleagues. They know that being a single attendee can feel very lonely in a sea of hundreds of attendees. To help, they’ve created a Don’t Dine Alone Mixer. Participants select a local Chicago restaurant where the mixers occur and pay individually. Each dining location has a facilitator to create a unique learning experience.

Issue Don’t Dine Alone Solves

Networking and connecting with others in a safe environment with an pre-apointed facilitator as participants break-bread together.

What are some great event ideas you’ve seen recently that others can steal and adapt? Why is it critical to understand the issue underneath a great idea and not just mimic another conference?

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