Chapter Leader Community (CLC)
Section Map

Meeting Planning

Best practices on planning chapter meetings/programs

DETROIT CHAPTER: Partnerships and Project Management

SUMMARY: In the chapter’s strategic plan they identified the aim to have a larger, signature event. The Board choose to bring in the Disney Institute to promote ATD Detroit’s name to a larger audience in the area and have the opportunity for significant financial gain in potential profit. The chapter partnered with various member and non-member based organizations across all industries as well as the City of Rochester Hills and the Rochester College faculty. Using key documents to guide actions and keep the planning on track--project charter, SWOT analysis, Gantt chart, informal risk plan, marketing plan, informal team skills matrix, project budget spreadsheet – the post event survey stated 90% of attendees felt they could apply what they learned to their professional work and/or personal lives, the program was relevant to their jobs, the facilitators enhanced their engagement in the presentation, and the facilitators ensured learning objectives were met. The chapter received over $7000 in profit, five new memberships and one corporate membership because of the Disney event.

YEAR: 2018

GREATER LAS VEGAS CHAPTER: Preventing a Program Flop

SUMMARY: After the chapter experienced a few program flops, chapter leaders created a process to vet potential speakers with the goal of creating more value for the membership. The board put out a call to chapter members assessing the talent within the chapter and outlining the chapter’s desired topics. The board also developed some programs that did not require a speaker and allowed chapter members to interact and learn from each other, such as “Bring Your Own Energizers” and “Bring Us Your Training and Development Problems.” The chapter instituted a policy of meeting with the upcoming speakers beforehand via WebEx to ensure the program is on target and meets member expectations. Because of this effort, overall attendance, communication, membership, and engagement increased.

YEAR: 2018

CHATTANOOGA CHAPTER: Partnering with a Local Community College’s Culinary Department

SUMMARY: The Chattanooga Area Chapter built a partnership with a dean of the local community college who is also a chapter board member. The dean served as the liaison between the community college and the chapter for students to cater chapter events. Costs to the chapter were minimal as the community college already had costs included in its program budgets. The base cost per person per meal was reduced by 50 percent. In addition to the tangible outcome of cost reductions, the chapter received very positive feedback from its members and provided a way for the culinary students to gain required experience.

YEAR: 2017

CONNECTICUT CHAPTER: Partnership with Red Thread

SUMMARY: The chapter made a connection with a local company, Red Thread, which designs and equips training facilities for optimized learning opportunities. The chapter made a deal to hold its meetings in the showroom, and Red Thread provides beer, wine, and snacks at no cost. A company representative has an opportunity at the beginning of each meeting to introduce the company as the host. The chapter president works with the company liaisons to select the evening meeting dates and coordinate the facility logistics. The location has proven to be convenient and well-liked by the membership.

YEAR: 2017

ROCHESTER CHAPTER: TED Talk Format of Programs to Increase Attendance

SUMMARY: After polling members, the chapter completely restructured its programming to offer one event with smaller, bite-sized presentations with more variety and networking opportunities for attendees. The board recruited volunteers in the chapter as guides and speakers for the event, and hosted the program at a local art gallery. As a result of this effort, the chapter increased event attendance in addition to chapter membership, and created more buzz in the community surrounding the chapter. After the events, the board received great feedback from attendees and gained four new community partners.

YEAR: 2017

FLORIDA SUNCOAST CHAPTER: Speak Easy - Taking the Pain out of the Speaker Selection Process

SUMMARY: The right speaker with the right content delivered the right way to an audience can measurably increase sales, performance, and customer satisfaction while simultaneously improving profits and expanding engagement. For this reason, the chapter created an online speaker proposal form that allowed the chapter to obtain all of the necessary information on a session to properly review, vet, and approve quality speakers. The form resulted in the first speaker who went through the process receiving exemplary marks on the post-meeting survey with a relevant and engaging topic that fell within The ATD Competency Model.

YEAR: 2016

DETROIT CHAPTER: Chapter Meeting Host

SUMMARY: In the past, the chapter president played the role of host at each chapter meeting. The chapter meeting host is charged with reviewing chapter business, introducing the speaker, selecting winners of gift drawings, and providing closing remarks. In order to showcase specific different board member roles to attendees, the chapter chose to rotate this responsibility among each of the board members. By rotating this responsibility, chapter members are exposed to the individual members of the chapter's leadership team, and board members are excited for the opportunity to host a meeting.

YEAR: 2015

CHARLOTTE CHAPTER: Documenting Meeting Presenters

SUMMARY: To better align learning objectives with members' needs, the Charlotte Chapter devised a proposal form for presenters requesting references, presentation topic, title, and goals. Through the form, the board ensures that selected speakers are on track with the chapter's developmental needs, the chapter is meeting competencies the members value, and board members are promoting and marketing the information appropriately.

YEAR: 2014

View more Sharing Our Success submissions