EMEA Conference: Programmes Breakout Sessions
Visit the Conference Speaker Policies for a breakdown of speaker types and definitions.
Step 1. Solicit Program Proposals
- Once the deadline for proposal submissions passes, the Executive Director provides the committee with a list of proposals submitted. If there aren't enough sessions to meet the needs of the target audiences, the committee may invite speakers to present sessions, upon approval from the Executive Director and Board Liaison. In some cases, complimentary conference registrations may be provided to invited speakers (upon approval).
Step 2. Review Program Proposals
- Sessions are reviewed by the committee based on the following criteria. Note: it's preferred that most of the breakout sessions do not fit within the conference theme (if the theme is programming-oriented), in order to ensure diversity of programming is provided.
- Proposal quality - how well is the proposal organized? Is it complete? Are there grammatical errors or other concerns? This provides an idea of how organized the session will be.
- Newness/Diversity of topic - the committee should make sure there is a wide range of topics presented, including those that are new, innovative, thought-provoking, and have never been presented at a European Conference before.
- Relevancy/fit within the organization’s mission and strategic goals, as communicated to the committee by the Board Liaison and Executive Director.
- Level of interaction with conference participants. Attendees like to share information and interact, rather than listen to a lecture.
- Appeal of topic - how practical and actionable is the topic? Will it appeal to our membership?
- Presenter qualifications - what credentials does the presenter have that make them an expert on this topic?
- Speakers should be vetted based on the Conference Policies. The Executive Director can assist with this. Note the vendor policy in particular. This should be communicated with any vendor who presents a proposal to speak, before accepting their proposal.
- Obtain information from the Executive Director regarding how many sessions can be accepted, based on the space provided at the conference hotel.
Step 3. Select Breakout Sessions
- The committee makes recommendations for which proposals to accept, reject, or edit based on the criteria above and general appeal of the topic/speaker. The final list of recommendations for sessions is sent to the Executive Director for approval.
Step 4. Communicate with Speakers
- Once all of the sessions are confirmed, the committee determines where to place each session within the conference schedule. The committee will make a prediction about the audience size for each session (high, medium, low), which will assist with the room allocation. The committee also helps ensure that there is at least one session for each target audience during each breakout session timeslot (see target audiences above). Note: we do not accept individual requests for timeslots from speakers.
- Make sure all selected speakers register for the conference (including those who are provided with complimentary passes). The Administrative Assistant will audit the speaker roster on a regular basis and let the committee know about any speakers who are not registered.
- If changes are needed to the speaking roster for any sessions, the new speakers must be vetted using the conference policies before they are approved. The committee member or Admin Assistant should also make sure the session presenters are aware that the new speakers must register for the conference.
- The Executive Assistant will enter speaker details and information into the Conference Schedule in Smartsheet for use on the web site and in the printed program.
- Room hosts will be selected for each program, first from committee members and then from other conference registrants. Rooms hosts packets will be created by the Executive Assistant and Executive Director.