Having wrapped up one end of The Impact Hub, Westminster, co-working office in plastic I was pleasantly surprised to find the response very positive. Curiosity seemed to be the word off the day. Members were asking me what was going on.
I didn’t know how people were going to respond to having their office wrapped up in plastic, an event going on while they were still working and someone going around with a cameraman introducing the space to a live audience on the internet. I’d just discovered Periscope.
That was one innovation I found truly exciting. In the end we had an audience of 22 from around the world, including friends in Australia and Peru. It was something else I was going to be playing with for the first time at the time as the event was going on.
One of the things I’m getting used to while studying, and knew was lacking from my knowledge then, is the professional terminology that comes with breaking things down into identifiable parts. Before studying, a stakeholder would have meant someone putting up a tent, killing a vampire, or complaining about their food. Looking back though, I was developing ideas about the audiences and their reaction and of course I was aware of exhibition attendees. That’s one of the reasons for putting on an event. I’d even written about it in a previous blog, about how nice it is when you find something exciting and can share it with others that can appreciate it.
As the last minute aspects of the organisation process was kicking in, I was running around, quite literally at times, talking with the manager of the Hub’s in house cafe, Cafe Think, arranging the catering, organising a guest list for New Zealand House’s reception (nobody get in to the New Zealand High Commission if they’re not on the list, security being quite important) and dealing with a host of other last minute details.
Of course there was planning, but most of it was in my head. I didn’t have the skills or the tools available to put things down in a professionally organised format. Although, I wonder how much it would have helped at the time without experience. In his book Events Management, Glenn Bowdin says, ‘ the strategic planning is concerned with end results and the means to achieve those results’ (Bowdin 2010:187). But what if you’re experimenting and starting something to see what will happen?
BOWDIN, Glenn. 2010. Events Management. Amsterdam; London. Butterworth-Heinemann.