Meeting design has had a prominent place in the way we think and work since 2022. Based on hands-on in-company training by impact maker Juup de Kanter, we developed our own Meeting Design Tool, which we use to help clients really make a difference. The result? A clear picture of the objective, the project team working in unison and surprising ideas for elaboration that need not cost a lot of money and effort.
This year we put our new tool into practice and roll it out to our clients. In January, we organised our first Meeting Design Session for and with the Local Organising Committee (LOC) of the IUPAC|CHAINS Congress. This prestigious international congress will take place from 18 to 25 August 2023 in The Hague. Some 2,000 chemists are expected to attend.
Clarity and alignment
Meeting design starts with clarity and alignment. Because a congress only has a real impact when its goal, content and experience are aligned. First, we started working on the objective. Formulating the congress goal may sound simple, but it soon became clear that opinions were divided on this. Indeed, the goal is more than just knowledge sharing. Using creative working methods and our Meeting Design Triangle, we arrived at a broad-based goal. We then determined which behaviours we wanted to see in the participants, to make sure that this objective was achieved. In other words, what do we want all those chemists to experience during the congress?
Goal, content and experience
We then tailored the programme to that. We asked ourselves, how can we organise seven content-filled days that are brimming with knowledge exchange and networking activities but also offer space for rest, reflection and interaction? To this end, we used the brainwriting method, which gave rise to lots of fun and creative ideas. Using the Impact Meter, we then looked at which ideas have high and low impact and which take a lot or little effort.
As it turns out, many ideas have impact without taking a lot of effort to implement them. “I didn’t expect this”, says Frank Sekeris of the LOC. “I found the Meeting Design Session to be a valuable addition and experience. A moment of reflection with the team early in the process ensures that we now have a clear understanding of why we’re doing what we’re doing. This gives direction to the entire way forward.”