On the day of your Tech and the City event, your speakers will be feeling the pressure – there’s a lot riding on their talk, so you’ll want to make sure they feel completely supported and celebrated for their hard work.
It’s important to keep your speakers updated on the internal schedule of the day – it might even be worth creating a schedule for them. This way they’ll know where to be and when.
It’s also important that you also have immediate access to your speakers at all times in case something unexpected happens. Make sure you have speakers' cell phone numbers, and ask that they tell you wherethey will be throughout the day.
You want to make sure your speakers are well taken care of before,during, and after your event. Here are a few things to consider:
1. Room and board
You cannot pay speakers, but if your budget allows it, you can cover travel costs, lodging, and meals. If you can, try to book all of your speakers rooms at the same hotel, and provide them with an easy mode oftransportation to and from your event venue.
2. Speaker activities
Planning activities around the event is great way to engage and honor your speakers. Many Tech and the City event teams will host a special dinner for speakers the night before the event, allowing speakers to shake off some of their pre-event jitters, and connect with one another. Other organizers may plan a tour of the city – especially if speakers are coming from outside of the region.
Having a “green room” or private space for your speakers is not required, but is a great way to prep your speakers before their talk. Either way, you’ll want to cover a few essentials with your speakers before they get on stage:
One of the most important ways to honor your speakers is with a simple thanks. A few suggestions for additional praise:
Thank them on the stage
Have your host thank all of the speakers when closing your event.
Give them a small gift
Gifts for your speakers are not required, but are a nice way to showspeakers how much you appreciate their willingness to share their ideaswith your community. Bonus points if it reflects the local flavor ofyour community.
Send a thank you letter
Don't underestimate the power of a simple "thank you" - send a simple thank you letter after your speaker takes the stage to thank them for all of their hard work.