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Top tips on how to deliver a successful AGM

Having executed hundreds of AGMs over the years, both big and small, Staging Connection’s event managers and technical professionals know what it takes to deliver a seamless AGM.

Here are some essential guidelines:

Location, Location, Location

  1. Face to face is best – Venues can look very different online to what they actually are, so it’s best to always organise a site visit.
  2. It comes in threes – Visit up to three different venues and when you’ve engaged one, invite your event management organisation along.
  3. Get technical – Assess the technical capabilities of the venue at the site visit – audio, visual, and internet connection for video streaming etc.

Create a Floor Plan

  1. Visualise it – Sketch out a layout or seating plan with the chosen space in mind
  2. Think differently – Consider working with the venue in say a “landscape” mode – this can often help with maximising the space.
  3. Please be seated – Major corporations will require a large board table. Typically this head table can span up to 12m across, depending on how many board members and delegates are representing the company.
  4. The difference is in the little touches – Add drapes behind the stage so the board can be seen clearly on camera.

Think Tech!

  1. Graphs, Stats and Charts – AGMs will typically require projection and screens to display important charts, graphs and statistics for their business developments.
  2. The magic number – Have a minimum of two screens either side of the head table – and place them so they can be viewed by the attending audience and on camera.
  3. Make the Unseen: Seen  – Offer fold-back vision monitors for the head table so directors can follow what is occurring with the presentation without having to turn around 180 degrees.
  4. The Power of Auto-Cue – Use autocue so the essential details of the speeches are outlined beforehand, letting the chairman and directors relax and engage the audience effectively.
  5. Do you hear what I hear? – To ensure a crisp, clear sound, make sure you have the appropriate number of table and lapel microphones. Take the time to test the front of house speaker system from various positions in the room.
  6. Light it up – Balance the lighting evenly across the head table using a solution such as Fresnel lighting.

Get prepped – make sure you prepare or request a Run Sheet

The AGM is not a standard event – it could span a couple of hours or up to half a day if a Q&A follows the main presentations. A run sheet is crucial for everyone involved to know when, where, and who is doing what.

An AGM run sheet commonly consists of:

  1. Meeting called to order, announcements, apologies and previous meeting minutes
  2. Order of business
  3. Opening speeches (welcome address)
  4. Chairman’s address
  5. Presentation of accounts
  6. Questions and Answers on the accounts
  7. Motions, nominations, voting and elections
  8. Open discussion of general business – launch of next annual plan

Make the most of the compulsory elements

Most AGMs now offer more than just an audio recording for their stakeholders. Video streaming live to the web allows a broader audience access to the AGM, be it your internal team or a range of current and potential shareholders who are unable to attend in person.

Conferencing technology can open up the floor to questions and answers inside and outside of the main space, giving people a rare opportunity to access the key leaders in the business.

The Devil is in the Detail

To deliver a successful AGM, start planning as early as possible. This can be up to a year in advance for some major corporations. Offer as much detail up front as possible to the event organiser.

Remember, the AGM is one of the most important events on the calendar and can be used to effectively communicate and engage key stakeholders in the business. Make your organisation’s AGM more than just a financial wrap-up.

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Robert Meek

Robert Meek

With over 20 years experience in the meetings and events industry Rob has a wealth of experience that he brings to the delivery of the diverse range of corporate and association events he has managed. Rob started with Staging Connections in an onsite technical capacity at a number of Melbourne’s 5 star venues. In his four years at Staging Connections in the Project Manager role, Rob has had responsibility for coordinating numerous large events. His most recent projects were for Pfizer Pharmaceuticals annual conference, 2012, the entire Intels ISS 2011 event (the Asia Pacific regional conference and technology expo), Amway China Business Sessions 2011, ANZ Leadership conference, 2011, Australian Open, 2008, 2008 & 2010 and Microsoft’s Tech Ed 2011. Rob’s attention to detail, his technical capability and his meticulous approach to event delivery ensure he is an ideal project manager for all events large or small.

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