The stages in the organisation of a convention

Would you like to organise a company event, more specifically a corporate convention? What is it about? What are its aims? Here we give you all the secrets involved in the organisation of a convention, step by step, to make it a real success.

Why organise a corporate event?

A corporate convention is an internal event organised between the various teams (marketing, sales, legal, etc.), the distribution network, the management committee and all your company's employees. A corporate convention often closes with a corporate party for the employees so as to combine work and pleasure. Organising a corporate event aims to bring teams together and promote their team spirit. A convention is the ideal time to communicate an important message to the whole company, for example, to announce the new strategy to be adopted, to announce good results for the year or to present upcoming developments.

A corporate convention allows managers to speak and discuss the company's vision and strategy with employees, so as to best meet the objectives set for the coming year. It can last one or more days, depending on the programme defined beforehand.

Organising a corporate event helps bring all the employees together in a relaxed setting, motivates them, encourages dialogue with managers, communicates the company's objectives and priorities, but also reinforces team spirit, creates links, rewards employees... The reasons for the organisation of a convention are many. Most employees value this experience. This event can be very successful if well organised. In order to do this, some essential steps need to be followed.


How to organise a corporate convention?

Defining the message and aim when organising a convention

Organising a corporate event requires creativity, rigour and, above all, good coordination between the members of the organising team. First and foremost, it is important to define the aims and key messages to be conveyed. These will form the basic elements of your corporate convention. You can also talk to employees to find out their expectations for this type of corporate event, and this can also provide you with ideas, particularly for the organisation of the corporate party.

So, once your messages have been defined and your objectives set, you can move on to the organisation of your corporate convention, i.e.: the budget allocated, the date, the venue, the guest list or the schedule, which requires you to come up with some ideas for your convention’s entertainment.

The budget

Having thought about the messages you want to convey, now define the budget required to successfully organise your corporate event and meet your goals. The budget must be precisely set out as it will drive all your choices when organising your corporate event, such as deciding whether or not to include a corporate party in the corporate convention. Everything must be taken into account and, above all, think about all the services you will need once you have booked the venue: the invitations, the hostesses, the scenography of your event, including sound, light and possibly video, the catering of course, which is one of the pillars of your event, and the entertainment.

The date

To organise a corporate convention, first set the date. Choosing the day of your event is a very important step. It must fit comfortably into your company's calendar, for example by avoiding busy periods. Nor should it clash with a national event or other event that might prevent your guests from attending. Don't hesitate to contact the Convention Bureau in the city where your corporate event is taking place to make sure you are not competing with a major local event. If accommodation is required for your event, they will also be able to provide you with information on hotel availability for the period you have chosen. Whether your corporate convention is followed by a corporate party or not, plan for a substantial amount of time to give you enough leeway to organise your professional event and, as soon as the date is chosen, set up a reverse schedule to make sure you stay on time!

The guests

It's time to establish who your guests are. Which departments are involved? The participants must be chosen in line with your goals, but also with your budget. This will allow you to define your capacity and confirm that your budget is consistent with the organisation of your convention, allow for a margin and also for additional guests.

The invitations

Let's move on to the invitations! Invitations to your company convention should be sent at least one month in advance, to allow employees to organise themselves. Before the invitation, remember to send a digital "Save The Date" so your guests can pencil in the date in their diaries.

For an internal event, the company's messaging system remains the preferred means, and it is inexpensive. Furthermore, in addition to the economic and ecological aspect, it allows easy registration of attendees who can directly confirm their participation through online ticketing providers who offer a new registration service for professional events. Some platforms also display the event directly on your guest's electronic calendar. A guaranteed way to get your corporate event on their agenda!

Let’s now move on to the choice of venue.

Finding the perfect event space for your corporate convention

Is your budget set out? Now look for the event space that will host your corporate event.

The first question to consider is: will the corporate convention include a corporate party? Indeed, if this is the case, there are two solutions: either choose a venue which offers different spaces which can accommodate meetings, workshops and the evening event, or select two sites, relatively close to each other, one of which can accommodate the event during the day and the other in the evening.

Once this question has been answered, look for the venue(s) appropriate for your corporate event.
In order to find the perfect location to organise your professional event, many criteria need to be taken into account.
The place, like the date, is a critical factor. It will set the mood of your corporate convention, whether through its architecture, atmosphere or reputation.
It must be easily accessible, whether by car or by public transport.

We recommend that you select your venue and book it between three and six months in advance.

To organise your corporate event in Lyon, our reception venues are the perfect solution: The Lyon Convention Centre, la Sucrière, Eurexpo Lyon or the Matmut Stadium in Gerland  are outstanding venues in the heart of the Lyon metropolitan area, making your event unique. Within the context of a company convention including an evening, you can, for example, take advantage of our Duo offer combining two of our original venues: the Matmut Stadium in Gerland to work in a sporty atmosphere and la Sucrière for an evening full of fun! Feel free to contact us for more information.

Is the date set? Have you set out your budget and chosen your venue? It's time to move on to logistics, the most time consuming part of organising a professional event!

The programme

To ensure that your corporate convention runs smoothly and without wasted time, while still respecting the schedule you have set yourself, it is important to establish a programme in advance, hour by hour. What will the theme of your event be? What kind of entertainment will be provided during the event? Think about entertainment ideas for your convention. Detail each step to make sure you cover the strategic aspect of your corporate convention, without forgetting that it must also be enjoyable!

Create several schedules to ensure the smooth organisation of your convention!

The first schedule is a general one. For everything to be organised and run smoothly, plan the reception, speaking times, meal(s), entertainment, activities, breaks between each of these stages, etc. To make sure you don't forget anything when organising your corporate event, create a reverse schedule. This allows you to track the timing and feasibility of your tasks.

The second schedule aims to organise the talks on the day. Indeed, you will certainly have to call on different teams: marketing, sales, legal and distribution networks. Be organised so you can plan your speakers' time slots. Here again, we advise you to plan breaks between the different presentations, which you can reduce if one of them takes longer than expected, in order to not overlap with the next one.


How to publicise your corporate convention?

Often forgotten in the organisation of a convention, publicity proves to be an essential step in the organisation of your event. Indeed, even if the corporate convention is an internal event, it can be promoted by email, the intranet, posters on your premises, or even on your company's internal social networks (Facebook At Work, Yammer or Whaller for example). The important thing is to get the word out about this professional event!

 Before the day

Before the day, you can set up a countdown, an article on the organisation of the convention, or several posts on the company's internal social networks that will keep your guests on their toes. Teasing is also a great way to keep your guests in suspense!

 During your corporate convention

On the day of the event, going live on Linkedin, Twitter or Youtube can be an interesting way to share content with your network. However, consider the confidentiality of certain types of information! Information can spread rapidly on social networks, and sometimes this spread is irreversible. You must therefore select content that is suitable to be seen by your entire community, including the press and your competitors.

You can also create a photocall for your guests to take photos of themselves (with or without the help of a photographer), allowing them to relay the event on their social networks. It is a highly viral way to increase visibility.

 And afterwards?

After your corporate convention, you can publish photos or videos taken during the day. You can also call on a service provider (if you do not have the resources in-house) to create an aftermovie to keep a memento of this corporate event.
Once the event is over, each of the guests can leave with some goodies bearing the company's logo: mugs, USB sticks, tote bags... Your guests will appreciate the opportunity to leave with a souvenir. This small detail is particularly appreciated!

Finally, try to get feedback on the organisation of your corporate convention and the development of the day. Gather all the information you can to improve the way you organise your next business event !