Chapter III: Day of the Workshop
There are many things to organize before the workshop and a number of
important logistical items to deal with on the day of the workshop. Below is a check list.
Be sure to arrive at the workshop site at least 1/2 hour before time in order to set up, get ready and greet participants.
Signs: Make sure the workshop location is clearly marked with signs leading the way.
Registration: Who is responsible for staffing the registration table and welcoming participants? Make a list ahead of time of participants and who preregistered and prepaid.
Materials: Have enough materials pre-made in folders for all workshop participants. If you run out, take down participant's names and addresses and mail out copies after the workshop. Have paper and pencils available for participants to take notes if they want.
Name Tags: Either make up name tags before the workshop or bring tags and markers to the workshop on which participants can write their names.
Refreshments: Who is responsible for set up and clean up? In addition to food and drinks, be sure to bring utensils (e.g., spoons, knives or forks) and plates, napkins and cups as appropriate).
Lunch information: If the workshop runs all day long and lunch will not be provided, a list of nearby restaurants where participants can eat. It is helpful to provide write up and have available.
Resource materials: On a table place materials from local, regional and national organizations that participants can purchase, review or contact for further information.
The facilitator should begin by welcoming participants and speakers, briefly reviewing the agenda ( e.g.7 summarizing the workshop goals and activities) and pointing out the amenities (e.g., restrooms, refreshments, break times and lunch). The facilitator is responsible for keeping to the schedule, making sure speakers stay within the time allotted and breaking the large group into smaller groups if needed. S/he may also need to deal with problems and even a crisis if it occurs.
Usually it is helpful to start the workshop with an "icebreaker". This is an activity that helps break down barriers and open participants up to one another. There are many different options here. An icebreaker can range from simply having participants introduce themselves and say why they attended the workshop, to more complicated activities where participants interview and introduce each other or make a list of personal characteristics on name tags and go around the room meeting each other.
Now it is time to begin the workshop program (discussed in Chapter 1). When introducing your main speaker(s), be sure to talk to him/her ahead of time about personal accomplishments so that the facilitator can share the information with the group. Try to stick to the time table set out in the agenda. You can prepare small signs to be held up to warn speakers 10 minutes and 5 minutes before the end of their presentation to give them time to wrap up.
Be sure to leave some time for questions and answers sometime during the day. You should decide whether the speakers will take questions during their presentations or save questions and answers until the end.
It is important to close your workshop on a good note. One way to do that is to have participants return to the main group again. You can have participants share what they learned, hold hands for a friendship circle, ask questions or lust say thank you and good-bye.
At the end of the workshop, it is helpful to get feedback from participants in order to evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of the workshop. This is optional; however, if you plan to repeat your efforts or seek funding for future events it may prove helpful. Just pass out a short and simple evaluation form to all participants and be sure to collect the forms at the end. If the evaluation form is too complicated1 participants may not fill it out completely.
After the workshop is over1 there is one last thing that remains to be done--sending thank you notes or letters to the key speakers or sponsors.
Workshop Planner Checklist
Assemble workshop planning team
Telephone #____________________ Telephone #____________________
Expenses $ Income $
refreshments:__________ foundation grants: ____________________
room cost:____________ registration fees: ____________________
speakers expenses: Total: ____________________
registration flyers: _______________________
name tags and markers:____
rental of audio-visual aids:_____
media package (press releases & PSA): _______________________
materials for resource table:________
supplies for children and youth activities: _______________________
Develop goals, agenda and secure speakers
name, address, and telephone #____________________________
Select workshop site and date
dates:________ or ________ location: or: _______________________
wheel chair access: yes/no
dates to visit location: _______________________
#breakout rooms: _______________________
location: seating capacity: _______________________
Registration flyer and mailing list
who is responsible: _______________________
organizations to contact for mailing list: _______________________
printing of registration flyer date: __________
date of mailing registration flyer: _______________________
other ideas for outreach: _______________________
Media or press release
newspaper contacts: _______________________
radio contacts: _______________________
television contacts: _______________________
date of mailing press release: _______________________
follow-up with media contacts: _______________________
Set up registration table and refreshments
who is responsible for:_________________________________
registration table: _______________________
Evaluation and Thank you letters
Who is responsible to tabulate evaluation: _______________________
Who is responsible to send thank you letters: _______________________