I’ve just come back from our Intel Developer Forum (IDF13) and all of us are feeling the encouragement from attendees and customers that saw some positive changes at our event this year. We made some big changes and this has me thinking about how we really get change done in the event planning environment.
Let’s start with the fact that change is happening all of the time in the event world. From the incorporation of new technologies to customer-driven demands, we are always facing change. But many of these changes are evolutionary in nature—they don’t impact the overall structure and design of an event.
What I’m talking about here is effecting revolutionary change: shaking things up and trying out some really new ideas.
Things don’t have to be broken to institute revolutionary change. There are times when the environment is ripe to try a major change in the interest of improving the experience in an entirely new way.
At IDF13, for example, we decided a little over a year ago to redesign the layout of our Technology Showcase. Our floor plan had been evolving from year to year, but it had been many years since we had done a full-scale re-layout of the floor. Our customers didn’t feel there was anything wrong with the layout, but we felt that it could be improved. We ended up with an entirely new layout that featured a new Networking Plaza at its center to host new event elements and a re-grouping of all of the exhibits surrounding that new premium real estate.
We did four things to make it through this process of change:
In the end, we found a design that met our objectives and we felt really elevated the entire attendee experience.
Change is hard and there will be headwinds along the way. You have to keep moving forward. Understanding objectives and testing frequently along the way were the keys to getting to a design that ultimately improved the event.
Joe English is Creative Director for the Intel Developer Forums at Intel Corporation. Joe is a creative professional, marketer, photographer and writer by trade. In addition to his work on the Developer Forums worldwide, he has recently managed film launches at the Sundance Film Festival, Presidential visits to Intel and led the creative for the re-design of the Intel corporate museum in Silicon Valley.