We’ve all heard the idiom, “Not all hot tubs are Jacuzzis, but all Jacuzzis are hot tubs.” So, what does that have to do with meetings? Well, not all meetings are conferences, but all conferences are meetings.
Conferences, meetings and other events often appear synonymous. However, each event is conducted and planned in different ways. From meetings to seminars and conferences to conventions, there is always one thing in common: personal identification. And, while this is an essential aspect of any event, figuring out how to plan, host and have the best event possible should be a priority on anyone’s list.
Event planning is a marketing tool used by organizations of all sizes to communicate with current and potential clients. For many industries, nothing beats a hands-on experience created by personal interactions. Many large companies, organizations and individuals are now hiring event planners to take over planning and socializing for their events. (Read More…)
So, what are the differences between a meeting, a conference and any other event?
Generally speaking, meetings and conferences are all events where people get together to consider a particular subject; usually, the difference is one of scale. A group of people getting together to discuss an issue, whereas a Conference is generally formal, will have an agenda and a program of activities planned.
It is always important for those attending a meeting, conference or another event to feel that the time spent has been productive and efficient. Preparation is essential for a successful event, and this can take a lot of time and effort. Using these handy guides and following the principles behind them will ensure that you’ve covered all bases and that you won’t be wasting anyone’s time (including your own).
First things first, what is a meeting?
The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines a meeting as “an act or process of coming together.” A meeting is a gathering of two or more people coming together for a specific purpose. These are commonly held when multiple people need to decide on agendas or ways to achieve a particular goal. They may occur when face-to-face interaction is required to make a decision. Meetings may also take place over the phone or a video chat. A meeting can be informal, such as a social meeting with friends, or formal gathering, such as a business luncheon. No matter the purpose of a meeting, whether business-related or not, there are specific tasks which must be completed to accomplish the underlying goal of that meeting.
- What steps are taken when planning a meeting? (Coming Soon!)
So, what is a conference? And why don’t we call them a meeting?
While conferences are similar to meetings, they are typically much larger. Conferences are large in scale and often involve large numbers of people. Conference comes from the word confer which means to discuss or debate. However, conferences are more than just an assembly of people for a cause or common interest. These events are a place to motivate, convene and plan for upcoming projects, workshops and so much more.
At this point, a conference becomes an event which is used by any organization to meet and exchange views, convey a message, open a debate or give publicity to some area of opinion on a specific issue. Conferences often include panels for discussions, smaller events being held in various rooms at a convention center and other activities for guests to attend. Typically, a conference is a one-time event, but they can also happen annually or bi-annually.
- How do you host a conference and where should it be held? (Coming Soon!)