First I will talk a little about the African Symposium on Statitiscal Development (ASSD). The African Symposium on Statistical Development (ASSD) is a forum for African Statisticians that was created to address uneven statistical development efforts on the continent in Yaoundé, Cameroon in 2005. Today the forum in its last meetings across eight countries has brought together mainly subject matter specialists in different areas in statistical production and use to address new emerging issues affecting the growth of data collection and use on the continent. With that said, the 10th ASSD was hosted by Uganda Bureau of Statistics (UBOS) and we helped manage the three day event that took place at Speke Resort Munyonyo in Kampala.
This was a big event with over 300 delegates from all over Africa with so much going on but the experience was priceless. So how does one handle such a big event for three straight days without glitches? That’s what I will be sharing with you today.
1. Media Engagement
Every big event will definitely need publicity. That’s where your skills in managing media people at events come into play. It’s not about just calling them to come and cover your event. They need to be briefed about the event and what to focus on. Make sure they know the key people to interview at the event. Also provide the media people with press releases to guide them when reporting about the event.
An event that brings together people from different countries requires thoughtful gifts for example, the ASSD was about Africa so we found a wonderful locally made souvenir depicting the Ugandan and this was given to all the delegates during the dinner gala.
3. Information Kits
Provide basic information about the country and the nearby places to where your guests will be residing to guide them in case of an emergency. In the information kit include hospitals, banks, shopping malls and recreation centres.
Produce banners that will be used for photo opportunities. Have logos of the partners involved in the event. This goes a long way in increasing visibility and talkability for those involved in hosting the event.
There will obviously be people who can’t speak English at a multinational event therefore select multi-lingual ushers to make your guests feel at home. At the ASSD we had ushers that could speak Arabic, French and Portuguese alongside English.
Use the opportunity to market your country and show guests around. Believe me, they will appreciate the gesture.
By Annest Namata