Ending with a bang

When setting up the schedule for the conference it is always difficult to choose how to end the whole event. Many people will leave directly when the conference is over and travel home. This is especially true before a weekend when everybody wants to get home to have his whole weekend for him and the family. So you probably should not schedule something on the evening of the last day.

And if people think that the last talk or talks are boring they might leave even earlier. So it is important to have some highlight at the end. Popular choices include a famous speaker, a round-table discussion or a quiz show. Whatever you do, make sure your event will end on time. Otherwise people who have to meet their train or plane will leave one after another disturbing everyone else. Instead of ending with the planned bang, the event will fizzle out, leaving everybody dissatisfied.

Generally you also want some kind of closing statement from the organizer at the end to wrap things up, thank everybody who helped, announce the next event etc. And, believe me, you don’t want to stand between the audience and their hard-earned weekend. So schedule this before the last session so that you don’t have to talk to a roomful of people getting up and packing their bags. Also people leaving early will still hear it that way.

One Response to “Ending with a bang”

  1. Nils Magnus Says:

    There are pros and cons for a wrap-up session. I think it depends on the size of the event. For conferences with a limited number of parallel tracks this may be suitable, however, if you have several tracks and a unsynchronized schedule, there is the chance of very few people showing up. So if you plan a wrap-up, think of some real news for the attendees and spread that word.