How to Enhance Delegate Engagement at Your Next Conference – CIS Event Management

Conference attendees may often attend several business events across the year.  To ensure that your upcoming conference stands out and leaves a lasting impression, we got some expert tips from the professionals! Dee Nicholas and the team at CIS Event Management have been creating exceptional event experiences for over 10 years all over Australia. We were thrilled to catch up with Dee to get her top tips on how to increase delegate engagement and how to provide your guests with a truly memorable experience.

 

What do your attendees want? Just ask.

Don’t take a stab at it – go straight to the source to find out what is going to excite and delight your attendees. Engagement, education and networking are all important but a pre-event survey is a great way to identify what your staff want to see in terms of relevant content. Post event surveys from previous events are also a great way to identify any improvement areas (and these can be administered fairly easily through an electronic system such as Survey Monkey).

It’s all about creating memorable experiences for your delegates.

Create a comfortable environment

Add a personal touch to your conference set up with comfortable lounge areas. Couches and coffee tables help create a relaxed environment for your delegates to unwind and refresh pre and post conference and on breaks. Free Wi-Fi, charging stations and a range of industry relevant magazines are some great added touches that your attendees will appreciate.

Offsite events

Creating an amazing ‘offsite’ event experience at a local landmark venue can be a really exciting addition to a conference. Where delegates have travelled overseas or interstate, it is a nice touch to include an ‘offsite’ event at a different location that showcases local culture and flavours.

Team challenges

Boost team morale by including interactive team building activities throughout your conference. There are so many unique options these days and by surveying your delegates pre and post event, you will be able to identify what style of activities best suits the group demographics.

Go outdoors

Conference programs can be pretty intense for delegates (‘information overload!’) so it’s always a great idea to add an outdoor component. Whether you choose to organise a team challenge in a local park or if you are able to host your working lunch outside – your delegates will be reinvigorated by the fresh air. For something different, why not schedule some ‘walking meetings’ as part of your program (this is great for short sessions with small groups or one on one meetings).

Mix up your program format with different styles of facilitated discussions.

Get creative

Inspire your delegates by including collaborative feature art piece such as a mural or a mood board that delegates can contribute to throughout the conference. Get the creative juices flowing by leaving art supplies, textas, fabrics etc. for your guests to make their mark on.

Food stations

Food stations and buffets are a fantastic, social way of dining that will increase interaction. Add a little fun to your catering with food station themes or elaborate styling features. Don’t forget when selecting your menu to keep healthy options in to avoid the mid afternoon slump.

Mix up your format

Break up back to back presentations and encourage conversation with some different program formats including panel discussions, live Q&A sessions, debates or ‘fish bowl’ group discussions.

If you want your next business event to make an impact, contact the team of business event professionals at CIS Event Management today.


For all your conference and business event furniture and equipment hire needs, contact the friendly team at Complete Function Hire. 

9 Expert Event Manager’s Tips For The Festive Season

Planning the company end of year event can be stressful for event organisers. Be sure to impress your colleagues, clients and boss with these  great tips from CIS Event Management!

Know your audience.

Understand who is attending your event. This will help you make decisions around menu selection, ice breakers, venue location etc.

Outline your event aims.

What are you trying to achieve? Is the event a reward for the hard work of the staff or appreciation of your stakeholders and partners? Like all events, determining the aims from the get go is an important exercise.

Make it easy for your guests.

Be clear as crystal with your invitations. Go the extra mile and include directions, details on where to park or details for sourcing fancy dress (if your event is themed). Always consider what is going to make your guests lives easier!

Team guidelines for staff end of year events.

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Ask Management or HR to send a quick reminder (for staff events) around alcohol policies and acceptable behaviour.

Budget for incidentals.

Allocate a little extra budget for incidentals (such as last minute guest invitations by management).

Budget for an AV technician.

Where your audio visual requirements go beyond the norm (e.g. microphone, lectern, data projector), you should consider budgeting for an AV Technician to be on site at your venue. This will help you avoid any unforeseen technical issues so that your event can run to schedule.

Check your contracts.

Get to know your venue contract and understand terms such as slippage clause (which is the adjusted price per person increase should your numbers fall below a certain amount). Never sign anything before totally understanding it and getting sign off from management.

Check, double check and triple check every last detail!

This goes without saying! A professional event manager is fastidious about every detail – we check, double check and then triple check every aspect of each event.

Extra support.

Working with a professional event manager such as CIS Event Management, doesn’t mean that you will miss out on planning parts of the event. Professional event managers are called in to either manage events end to end, or to work closely with event planners to support them during busy times.

Happy event planning! Be sure to contact the team at Complete Function Hire for all your Christmas event hire needs – from AV to furniture to décor to equipment- we are your one stop shop this festive season. 

How to Host The Perfect End of Year Event – CIS Event Management

With event season in full swing, the team at Complete Function Hire are busy delivering furniture, equipment, AV and décor to Melbourne’s best venues. We see all kinds of Christmas events – from casual family fun days in the park to glamourous VIP client events (and everything in between). So, what makes a corporate Christmas party really memorable?

On this week’s blog we were honoured to chat to Dee Nicholas, Director of CIS Event Management to get her helpful tips for event planners. Dee has been producing amazing events in Melbourne, Australia and all over the world for over 25 years and we enjoyed getting her expert advice on how to make sure your Christmas event is talked about for years to come.

Mix It Up!

The easy option is to do what you did the year prior however variety is the spice of life! There are so many incredible event spaces in Melbourne – the possibilities are endless. If you truly believe you have ‘been everywhere’, why not let your imagination run wild in a warehouse style space or one of Melbourne’s incredible gardens? It is good to mix up the format up too – if you have had a formal seated event in the past, why not mix it up with a cocktail party style event or a picnic?!

Add the element of surprise by changing up your event format this year.

First Impressions

Get creative with your invite. The Christmas Party is seen as recognition to staff (or clients) for their hard work and many look forward to the event each year. To help with getting maximum attendance, create an exciting invite with a teaser of what they may expect on the night.

The WOW Factor

Whether it be incorporated into your entertainment, your styling, your menu choice or your gifting – it is always important to think about incorporating points of difference e.g. signature cocktail designed especially for your business, a special theme, interactive activity or high tech digital element.

A special theme can give your end of year event the WOW factor.

Food, Glorious Food

Food is always an important factor when creating an amazing event. Ensuring there is ample food, as well as variety and consideration of guest’s special dietary needs will always be received well. Food stations, Charcuterie and Cheese tables and dessert buffets are all very popular at the moment. Incorporating food stations will ensure that guests can continue to ‘graze’ throughout the event and it can become a stylised feature and talking point at your event, creating a lasting (and delicious) impression for years to come.

Recognition

For end of year staff parties and client entertaining events alike, it is always important to place emphasis on recognition. A well delivered speech by Management including company highlights for the year will help end the year on a positive note. A personal touch is always well received and appreciated.

Break The Ice

Do your guests know each other? For larger businesses with multiple departments or for client entertaining events, it is possible that guests may not know each other that well so it’s important to break the ice. Interactive activities such as Gif booths, photobooths and roving entertainment are great starters.

If you want your event to make an impact, speak to the team of business event professionals at CIS Event Management today.

For all your event hire needs this Christmas and beyond, click here to contact the team at Complete Function Hire. 

Complete Function Hire Venues We Love – SEA LIFE Melbourne Aquarium

Fancy partying with some adorable penguins this Christmas? The team at Complete Function Hire were thrilled to talk to Kate Stevenson, Event Manager at SEA LIFE Melbourne Aquarium recently to find out about their super cool shared Christmas Party event experience, “Christmas with the Penguins” and to find out what makes SEA LIFE Melbourne Aquarium such an iconic Melbourne function space. If you are after an event experience that your guests will remember forever, this is the venue for you this event season.

Why are events at SEA LIFE Melbourne Aquarium so unique?

Guests experience a special combination of nostalgia from having visited the aquarium as a child and the excitement of seeing the space transformed into a sophisticated event venue.

Whilst at most venues your biggest decision is picking a theme, our clients can choose between a back drop of King and Gentoo Penguins or a 5m Salt Water Crocodile! Our Fish Bowl event space in particular, is a pretty surreal experience, everyone enjoys fine dining, but fine dining at the centre of a shark tank, with a 360 degree view of the ocean’s most impressive creatures ensures a pretty memorable night.

SEA LIFE Melbourne Aquarium offers an experience that can’t be recreated anywhere else. As well as the obvious unique feature of viewing the cast of finding nemo as you sip a cocktail, we also offer amazing experiences such as diving. It’s not every day a corporate function begins with the CEO greeting their employees from inside a shark tank.

What is the most amazing / unusual event that you have hosted at SEA LIFE Melbourne Aquarium and why?

We recently hosted a drag night called ‘Dragged Under’. It was incredible to see such an avant-garde performance in an equally dramatic space. In terms of creating an atmosphere for your guests, drag queens and stingrays are a winning combination.

What’s new at SEA LIFE Melbourne Aquarium?

We are hosting a Shared Christmas Party Event called “Christmas with the Penguins”. It is ideal for those looking for a more informal work Christmas party or as an opportunity to enjoy the aquarium child-free with a cocktail in hand. The penguins themselves are of course adorable and with our fun additions including a gourmet BBQ in the adjoining courtyard, Christmas dessert bar and interactive photo booth, it’s going to be a very memorable night!

Thank you to Kate and the team of event experts at the spectacular SEA LIFE Melbourne Aquarium! We can’t wait to visit again very soon.

For all your event hire needs, contact the friendly team at Complete Function Hire today.