It’s always fun working with Microsoft at their events. Their locations are always well located, decorations and other considerations are pleasantly arranged and the food for both staff and attendees is always off the charts. In this past year, we’ve coordinated our own AZ (Microsoft users) Group, traveled to San Francisco to help introduce the world to Windows Azure and most recently flew up to the Seattle pier to run the registration desk for the Visual Studio Launch on September 12.
But day-of tasks are not all we’ve done for each of these events. Before the event, we built registration microsites, worked with Microsoft staff on badge design and lanyards and acted as ‘I need to get this done but I don’t have the time to figure it out’ type of helpers that every good event has on hand.
While the Visual Studio Launch was easily the smallest of our most recent Microsoft events, it may have been the most important — it was for enterprise customers, high-ranking Microsoft employees and the press. Our tasks, once we arrived on site, were to check in 300ish people (giving them badges and lanyards, a gift bag and direct them to coat check) without using any sort of stanchions for line control and pre-printed badges.
While we typically prefer to print badges on site, this invite-only event prompted the event planners to order all the badges with names on them in hopes of eliminating possible bottlenecks. It worked. Our staff met attendees at the door, showed them to the proper badge pick-up line, distributed their materials and guided them where they needed to go with nary a delay.
The registration desk is usually the first thing any attendee sees when attending a conference, and the swanky-ness of this set up made it even more important that we establish a proper mood and tone for those walking through the door.
Did I mention the goodies? Have you ever had ahi tuna, shrimp and scallops mixed in a Mediterranean sauce and emptied into a martini glass? How about a real leather satchel bag — that’s cool and practical enough to be usable — as a giveaway item? Or plush seating surrounded by purple drape? Microsoft and their Visual Studio Launch attendees sure did.
See you next time!
Check out the EventDay Facebook page for our collection of pictures.