Where does a chamber professional find the time to engage with members and create content? The answer is easier than you think.
You only have time for the important stuff and it’s not all important, no matter how it feels.
Since you can’t create more hours in the day, you have to take a look at how we’re using them. Think of your events. There are some events, for instance, that require a lot of your time and give you very little in return. When you recognize you have an event like that in your roster, you have to sunset it.
How to Say Good-bye to Events that Don’t Work
Can you Regift it?
Is this a chamber-exclusive event or is it something you inherited from the community? If it’s not exclusive, can you give it to someone else? Is there a group within your community who would like to take on this Chia Pet of an event? If so, wrap it up and give it to them.
Understand the History
Imagine the family tree of a soap opera character (if you still remember what soap operas were). When fleshing out the long-forgotten connections of former marriages you have links upon links, connecting people and uncovering the causes long-standing feuds. The same can be said of events but with a lot less drama. Every event had a beginning. At one point it had supporters and people who loved it. If you’re going to sunset something – or suggest to the board you’d like to do so – it’s important to know all of those hidden connections or you could find yourself in the middle of a fire storm.
Don’t keep an event that isn’t working just because it may have a supporter on the board or a large sponsor. If they were that much of a supporter the event wouldn’t be in jeopardy of being cut. Know what you’re getting into and make sure you have detailed reasons as to why it’s past its prime.
Keep the Memory Alive
You know the quote – there are no mistakes, only learning opportunities – well, if you’re discontinuing an event because it’s declined in popularity or it doesn’t make the money it used to, take a moment to analyze why that might be. Is the decline in the event’s popularity indicative of an emerging member preference or a lack of effective marketing? What did your members enjoy that you can retain from the event? Don’t let the event go off silently into the night without conducting your own exit interview.
Giving up an event is like lifting a weight off of your shoulders but not every member will be as excited as you are to see its demise.
Guest post by Christina Green
Image credit: Norma Davey