So you survived this year’s AGM (Annual General Meeting) too? Congratulations to your hard work! It’s fully understandable (and healthy) that by now you’ve probably started to dream about your upcoming vacation instead of preparing your Chairman and CEO for meeting shareholders and press. However, before you completely forget about all the insights and good lessons learned from this year – do yourself a tremendous favor and do a short checklist for next year’s AGM. Your future self will thank you.
Here’s a couple of useful bullets to get you started on your own list:
Document the process – make sure you’ve got the process leading up to the AGM documented. When did you initiate preparations for your AGM this year? How many were involved and what kind of external help did you use? Are there names you might need again next year that should not be forgotten? Choose the format that works best for you and the kind of organization you’re working in. Hint: a short summary about the event including the time schedule you followed this year + important contacts should be a good starting point.
Document media coverage and save communications material – document press clippings, document the names of the journalists that attended your AGM and the kind of questions that popped up. Also make sure to save all important communications material you and your colleagues prepared for this year. Next year you’ll be able to save lots of time by using those press releases, speeches, statements and Q&As as templates.
Evaluate and ask for feedback – how did the whole thing go? Evaluate how your internal stakeholders experienced the AGM. Is there something they would have needed more help with? Perhaps something they thought must be fixed in a better way for next year? Now is the time to put that feedback down on paper. When it comes to your external stakeholders, that is, your shareholders, the media, collaboration partners and so on – now would be a good time to reach out and ask for their feedback too. Does not have to be anything complicated, but remember that it is always good to keep up with the word on the town. Hint for communications professionals: usually there can be lots of valuable stories to be found in this feedback if you care to listen.
Keep what worked good – for some reason, it’s always easier to beat oneself up than remembering what went really well. So do that! Put down your own internal success factors this year – did you find the perfect team for the assignment? Did you adjust the time schedule this year or perhaps you dared to do something a little bolder that payed of? As tiny as it might be – put it down in writing.
Define roles and responsibilities for next year – perhaps a little bit more of a boring, yet very useful task. Set clear intentions for next year. Who will be doing what? Decide now who will be in charge of the project so there won’t be any questions about it. Hint: schedule a start up meeting in Outlook for next year’s project. Based on what you know now, invite the relevant participants too.
Last but not least – did the location work out well for you? Great! Book it for next year’s meeting as soon as you can. You’d be surprised over the booking frenzy over specific dates in May…
Until next time, wish you all the best!