Spreading out the canvas of fresh thinking on the platform of fresh formats, form the base of future conferences. It comes from a perspective that conferences need to change, every stakeholder has a role to play, every format comes with a clear objective, and the future should be kept in mind while creating a conference today.
To start with, we must necessarily focus on bringing a desirable behavioral change in every stakeholder. So, in the beginning it could be a little tongue in cheek tone that explicitly but uniquely conveys the real need for change. Then comes the creation of a narrative, giving voice and visuals to content, engaging the senses, making the attendees feel empowered, and all throughout the sessions, making the occasion memorable.
Next comes the underpinning and deciding on the objectives for a particular session. For easy understanding. Let’s condense them into a list that people could easily remember. It begins with building the right connect, to exchanging knowledge and then informing and entertaining. And all throughout, treading it with a certain conceptual chord. We understand, that every single session or meeting format should be aligned to one of these six objectives.
So how is this useful? Before we settle on a session, we should decide on the objective. And overall, the conference should try and have sessions that include at least four of these objectives. Too often most conferences just inform and do little else. So ‘informing’ would mean having speakers disseminating information. If we attend a conference like this, then we are taking part in sessions that have one objective, to inform. And that’s not enough for the modern day attendee.
So while crafting a conference for today and tomorrow, the first thing we do is to look at the formats to ensure that we can tick off a few more objectives. This allows us to look at a list of possible sessions and rethink, ‘will this format allow the audience to connect’ create, exchange knowledge, be entertained or process what they have already covered? Think about it, this is really useful!
Let’s remember, a conference of the future can very well include fishbowls to debates, and from fancy tech to highly engaging activities that can infuse behavioral change for time to come!