A note from Kelly King: I often hear leaders talk about their struggles with events. Some are disappointed at the numbers, and some are struggling with making sure their event offers value and life change. In today’s article, Jessie Seneca offers some practical and godly advice when considering the signs of a successful event. This is definitely an article to share with your team!
I remember the very first conference I ever attended. Do you? It was POWERFUL!
It was a mountaintop experience for me. It was the catalyst that jump-started my daily reading of God’s Word. An event can be the place God meets a woman in the very depths of her soul if she allows Him access. Now, that is success!
Yes, one event can change a life!
However, too often we measure success on the numbers, such as how many women were in attendance, how much money the event brought in, the amount of giveaways, or how much merchandise was sold. Although all these areas are important factors in planning a successful event, they shouldn’t be the main focus.
God’s Word defines success differently. In Joshua 1:8-9 we read, “This book of instruction must not depart from your mouth; you are to meditate on it day and night so that you may carefully observe everything written in it. For then you will prosper and succeed in whatever you do.”
So, along with the logistical planning of an event, be sure to include devoted prayer for your team, the event, and the attendees. Determine the “take-away” you desire the women to leave with. And, certainly wrap it all up with love for one another.
First, let’s consider success on a spiritual level.
I love hearing how a woman’s life is impacted and the value of the event day. Nothing brings more pleasure to my heart than seeing a woman changed from the inside out because of a personal touch from God. Success is viewing a transformed life—freedom, a softened heart, personal revival, an impacted marriage, accepted forgiveness, an increased passion for God, etc. Be cautious to not support an “experience” that does not have God as its Source. Is Jesus Christ Lord of your experience, or do you place your experience above Him?
Second, know the measurable signs of an effective and successful event from a logistics perspective.
Impactful evaluations. It’s always important to provide attendees with a well-crafted survey that allows them to provide you and your team feedback. This allows you to see the event through the participants’ eyes and helps you gauge if you accomplished your event goals and ultimately event mission.
Returning attendees. Retaining attendees speaks volumes to your events. It helps you know if you are meeting a need in the community around you. When individuals re-engage with you and your events, it shows they are invested in what you are providing them.
Repeat volunteers. Having people around you that say, “Yes! Count me in” goes a long way. It will help you learn more about yourself as a leader, too. Although you may not have contact with each volunteer, you and your team set the climate. Having individuals that get on board and stay on board is a great indicator that you are in tune with those around you.
Personal growth. After the event is over, do you see women living fruitful lives from what they experienced the day of the conference? You may not always be able to know the full effects, but hopefully there will be some noticeable growth in the lives of the women who attended.
Women can’t stop talking about the event. Did your event create a buzz? Word of mouth is powerful, and having others talking positively about what they experienced shows they genuinely enjoyed it. Not only is this great feedback for that specific event, but it’s great marketing for future events! A good experience goes a long away and will help you when it’s time to promote your next event.
In the end, what do all events have in common? People! Who do you interact with and work with in the process of planning events? People! Who attends your events? People! Successful event planners are personable, engaging, good conversationalists, and intentional listeners. Being personable is a must when relating to your team, vendors, venues, and attendees. Ultimately, people remember the individuals they interact with, and that interaction can make or break an experience. An others-focused mindset will allow all you do to be a benefit to others. And, while focused on others, remember your attitude and heart matter. God calls us all to be Christlike to others. So, wear kindness as a necklace. “Do not let kindness and truth leave you; Bind them around your neck, Write them on the tablet of your heart” (Prov. 3:3, NASB).
May you and your team go out with prayerful hearts and intentional steps to pursue all the planning that is ahead. For you may be the tool God uses to jump-start someone’s faith walk, revive a stagnant heart, or fulfill a desire for more of Him in her life.
And may the Lord our God show us his approval and make our efforts successful. Yes, make our efforts successful! (Ps. 90:17, NLT)
Jessie Seneca is the founder of More of Him Ministries in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. She has been leading women in the local community and churches for over twenty years. Each year, Jessie offers SHE Leads, a women’s leadership Conference. She has also worked with LifeWay as a Living Proof Live City Coordinator and Northeast Simulcast Specialist. She enjoys seeing women get into the Word of God and the transformation it brings into their lives. Jessie’s passion and wisdom is to use the gifts God has given her to speak into the lives of her listeners and now readers through her Bible study, The Secret is Out and book, Road Trip. Her newest book is Abound: A Call to Purposeful Servant Leadership. She is a wife and mother of two young adult daughters.