You never forget that awful feeling in the pit of your stomach when something goes wrong with a big event you’re planning.
It was the Sunday morning keynote of a two-day association conference with people attending from two states. I was on the planning committee for this event when the unimaginable happened. Our keynote speaker was a no-show. When the conference chairperson called the speaker to figure out where she was, she was still at home. She had put our event on the wrong date in her calendar.
The planning committee, along with association leadership, put our heads together and decided to do a panel discussion question and answer session with the attendees. We apologized. The speaker wrote a letter of apology and provided a training CD to each person who registered. And we all learned a valuable lesson:
- Always have a backup plan for your speaker.
- Call to confirm and follow-up with your speaker several times before the event – up to and including at least a couple days before they are scheduled to speak!
Anytime you plan an event, you need to be prepared in case something doesn’t go as planned. From inclement weather to cancelled flights, there are any number of things that can go awry, so this week, we’re talking about how to proactively solve problems with back-up plans.
When you expect the best but prepare for the worst, you can be the admin superstar who saves the day!
Supporting your administrative success,
P.S. An Office Hero is someone who overcomes challenges with a smile on their face and makes the impossible possible, and our friends at ezCater are on the search for their next Office Hero of the Year Award recipient. If you know someone who deserves to win, nominate them here.