Sunday, October 10, 2010

Ultimate Guide to Event Management 2

By: Dr^Waqipedia

Part 1: Overview for Pre-Operative Stage

In the previous post, we have already learnt about the stages and gotten the general idea about what it is. In this post, I would like to share the overview of the pre-operative stage. I try to cover the most important parts and highlight what to do in order to save more time and work more efficiently in a team.

There are 4 'blocks' for the pre-operative stage, a process beginning from the top to bottom. I created this to help ease our mind of what is the most practical thing to do and to be prepared. Of course you can add and minus as you like or shuffle it based on the situation, but I hope at least it can guide you on planning, leading and monitoring the event or program.

1. Create a vision
  • A person who plans an event or organizes a program needs to set his vision and begin with the end in mind. You need to (at least in my opinion, as the program manager or leader) have a personal direction or general view of your planning starting from gathering the team until execution of the event or program. Create it in your mind first and then work to bring them into existence.
  • My tips: get help from seniors or experienced people. 'Googling' to get info or asking around in Facebook might enable you yo generate more ideas.
  • Therefore, by generating your idea through the components of the Triangle of Vitalities, I am sure it will help you in preparing towards your vision. Simply put, it helps you to prepare for the internal core of the event (result, legality, system, communication and profit) and the external one (your mission, the team and leadership). Detail in on your Triangle of Vitalities.
2. Project Planning & Working Paper
  • Next is project planning. Project planning isn't planned by yourself only. It's a cumulative work by your team. At this stage, you need to start gathering your core team which include the main-board and head committees and start the brainstorming process. Sometimes, the process will be lengthy but as 90/10 Rule states, "First 10% of your time that you spend planning and organizing your work before you begin will save as much as 90% of the time getting job done once you get it started."
  • The brainstorming process is part of team building. It is the time for arguing and clashing of ideas in order to come out with the best one. In order to help the process of brainstorming, I'm suggesting the use of Event Model Canvas which will help you to see the general idea of working flow and how the event would be. In other words, it will help you see the 'future process'.
  • At the same time, the brainstorming process will also include administrative work; working paper, minute meeting, memo, sponsorship letters and other stuff involving 'papers'. A lot of people avoid this (especially guys) because it's tiring and boring. However, this is an essential part which need skills and time. Refer here for details.
3. Pre-requisite
  • This is solely the procedure and bureaucracy process. And the most exhausting part to deal with. Every university or college has their own bureaucracy and sometimes vary a little a bit. In CUCMS, previously, when you do a program, you only need approval from STAD (Student Affairs) and SSCM (Student Service Committee Meeting) but now, you also need approval from Prof Hatta or in other words, Dean aka Academic Faculty.
  • These procedures are for approval and financial aid.
4. Leading the Team & Performance Monitoring
  • The most vital elements for event management as a whole are leadership and management. According to Peter Drucker and Warren Bennis, "Leadership is doing the right things as management is doing things right." First question here is leadership - what we want to accomplish? Second is management - how can I best accomplish it? Third is productivity - doing it (involve time management).
  • There is no need for me to explain about leadership and management skills because there are a lot of helpful resources out there. Just Google it and there you are. Those are skills; that you need in combination of little principles (20%) and more experience or practices (80%). However, Insyallah in the future, I will share certain links, websites and book open discussions which are really good for references.
  • There are 3 tips that I will share for this stage; (1) the duration of the stage starts once you create your idea, til you execute it and until the post mortem. (2) As a leader, you need to lead your team based on understanding, by making them truly understand their area of work or job-scopes and use your authority as a leader when it's necessary. And (3) as a good manager, keeping up with their progress and following up is essential.
  • For the monitoring process, there are things that I suggest would help but are not compulsory to do; (1) the use of Gantt Chart for follow up and progress monitoring and (2) working flowchart for communication aids up (sponsors, STAD) or down (committees, target people).

To wrap up, all the four points above are incredibly essential in planning and preparing for event management especially the pre-operative stages. However, in terms of application, they are not fix, can be varied and depends on individual abilities. In the near future, further details of all the four points will be elaborated. For the time being, take time to digest as much as you while waiting for my next post. Best of luck learning!

Next: Pre-Operative 1: Create a Vision

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