Events are an essential part of work culture especially for business professionals and accountants to stay up-to-date with the latest trends and technology updates.
We discussed in our first blog of this series ‘events accountants can’t afford to miss in 2019’ that events are essential for you to stay relevant and effective.
There are a number of events that are available to you. However, it can be tricky and may consume much time in figuring out if you should participate in that event or if that event is of any use for you. Most of the events fail to deliver the relevant content as promised and it is indeed a wastage of your resources, i.e., time, money and energy.
So, it is essential to have a guideline while planning to attend an event. We have enlisted five factors to consider during the event selection.
Every event’s potential depends on the organizers of the events. So, it is advised to select events organized by trustworthy sources. Ask yourself, if the organizer is an individual or an organization. If it’s a trusted organization or not. What’s the record of these organizers past events.
It should be the first thing that you should consider researching a little bit about the organizers because that’s the place where the trust-building process begins. Most of the most successful events are organized by the renowned and trusted organizations such as AICPA ENGAGE 2019, Intuit QuickBooks Connect, Sage Summit, Accountex USA 2019, and more.
Bonus tip: Find some online reviews by attendees of the event and talk to them about their experience. Search for tweets and hashtags related to the event to check its hype and popularity.
2. Topic and Agenda
Consider these questions:
- What’s the agenda of the event?
- What are the topics that will be covered in the event?
- Are those topics of any use to you, your team, or business?
- Will it add value to your skills or knowledge?
- What kind of audience will be attending the event?
- Should you trust the organizer and their approach to those topics?
These are the most vital questions that you should ask yourself before planning to pack your bags and attend the event. You need to finalize your objective and aim of attending the events then only you will be able to answer these questions truthfully and then you will be able to find out if that event is relevant to your team and accounting firm or not.
None of the events is relevant unless you have a clear goal or motive of attending an event. Attend the event only if the proposed agenda of the event supports your career or business objectives.
Bonus tip: Discuss your objectives with your team and finalize the essential ones.
Now, ask the organizers if these specific objectives will be fulfilled or not?
Okay, attending an event can consume huge amount of time. However, that’s not the only expense as some events can bite the pockets as well. So, the budget needs to be discussed and overviewed properly before concluding.
Attending events may cost you a considerable amount of money, and you have to decide if it’s worth it or not. Apart from the fees for the event, the cost associated with the event are various and some of them maybe missed during the consideration stage, which could be travel expenses, accommodation, food, and such others. Also, you may not be able to work for that duration, which could also cost you some business. Once you calculate these expenses, you need to ask these questions:
- Do you have a sufficient budget for the event?
- Do you think the event will be able to deliver good ROI?
If your answers to these questions are in yes, then you can go ahead with the event. For negative answers, you can try to find out other options or alternatives as there are plenty of events and you may find your objectives fulfilled at another event that may charge you not more than your budget allows you.
Bonus tip: Try to decide which events you would like to attend in 5-6 months advance because almost all the event organizers give early-bird discounts and special offers. So, plan your event visit to have pre-booking benefits.
4. Location of the Event
Most of the reputed event organizers give adequate thoughts before choosing a venue to ensure that as many people will attend the event as possible. The importance of venue selection is such that none of the organizers can neglect it and neither the attendees. However, every location that seems perfect to the event organizer may not be equally suitable for you.
Always try to find out the best suitable location for you. It shouldn’t include much traveling that may consume a lot of your precious time and money. Check the hotels and accommodation the organizers are offering. Make sure it is convenient to travel to that venue and affordable to you.
Bonus tip: It isn’t a bad idea if you can catch up a friend or ex-colleague, who can host you in that location.
It is another important factor that one must consider before planning the event to attend. For most of the professionals and accountants, the primary purpose of attending the event is to networking and lead generation. If the attendees and peers are not the ones, your accounting firm and business can benefit from, then the purpose of the event is compromised.
Most of the events, like conferences, publish the list of the registered attendees or firms that will also be attending the event and can help you narrow down the way to the most relevant and useful event for you regarding networking and lead generation. So, try to find out such lists of attendees and firms who will be attending the event with you.
Bonus tip: Off the records, you can ask the organizers for the list of other attendees. If you think your competitors are attending, the event most probably has the right audience for you as well.
The considerations mentioned above are not in the priority-wise order and equally important. However, once you consider them all, it will be easier for you to find out the most useful and relevant event for you and your accounting firm or business.
Now, it’s possible that you must be wondering how to prepare a schedule to balance your work and events but don’t worry for that, wait for our next blog that will cover the same. Just subscribe to our newsletter to get notified via mail about our upcoming blogs.