Finally – that event you worked so hard on is over. It finally feels like it’s time to throw on some slippers, grab a bag of chips and wind down with a glass of wine.
But not so fast.
While you should definitely give yourself a pat on the back, the period after an event can give you an opportunity to debrief both for yourself and your volunteer crew while the event is still fresh in your minds.
A de-briefing session can check on what worked and what didn’t for both you and your volunteers. It’s a positive opportunity to put a variety of minds together for a brainstorming sit-down. It can give you a chance to address concerns, highlight strengths and soak in feedback to better future events. And even if you feel like an event went successfully, you will want to check in with your team and volunteers to make sure you’re all on the same page.
Set aside time, have an agenda and get ready to review your goals both for yourself and your team.
Questions to ask yourself and your volunteers:
- Get bigger and better
What are things that can be done to make the next event an even bigger success? Think about both the physical planning of the event and the analyzation of your attendee engagement. Could registration go more smoothly? Do you need more parking? Likewise, is there a way to get more attendees to your event? How was your social media language?
- The good, the bad and the ugly
Take steps to congratulate yourself, acknowledge what could be improved upon and what needs to be thrown to the wayside. Acknowledge yourself and your volunteers for a job well done, but also discuss what didn’t work and how it can change.
- Listen and learn
What kind of feedback did the attendees provide – both explicitly and not explicitly? Brainstorm ways to get attendees to provide direct feedback, but also discuss what was observed. Did people struggle finding things? Was one activity particularly popular?
- Let’s take action
Create a priority list and determine what actions can and should be done. Making a plan of action sets the tone for both yourself and your volunteers that the feedback they provide will be considered and utilized to make future events even better.