10 steps to hosting a successful national digital practice meeting

posted by Brendan Hodgson

Last week, about 20 H&K consultants from across Canada flew into Toronto to take part in our first digital practice meeting. It should be stated, the digital practice itself has been around a while (since 1999, in various iterations), we’d just never reached out to so many people before at one time. And, despite the stress of coordinating the event itself, it was quite something. Here’s some lessons learned:

  1. Invite kickin’ guest speakers to pick up the mood when 8 hours in a hotel conference room get you down. Fantastic job,guys!
  2. Intersperse your presentations / discussions with cool stuff from around the web… a dollop of Zefrank, some Youtube clips, real case studies, and a bit of a show and tell on the good, bad and ugly of social media.
  3. Save those cool sites to a Del.icio.us page… it’s easy, and a good reminder of the application of these various tools.
  4. Brainstorm around real clients. The ideas were something else, and we’re already moving forward to apply some of the better ones.
  5. Invite the big wigs for dinner, especially if you’re able to convince Paul Wells to hold court. Get ‘em toasty, and they’ll be putty in your hands when you show them the bill.
  6. Splurge on wine at dinner, though maybe not $120 a bottle… that’s a joke, Mike… no, really.
  7. Have multiple back-ups when the hotel’s wireless starts getting finicky… damn that interweb!
  8. Don’t give booze as a thank you gift to anyone who has to fly and doesn’t have checked baggage.
  9. Don’t leave the booze that you couldn’t send unattended, though I do think it added some creativity to one of the break-out groups.
  10. Involve consultants at all levels who are passionate about digital (even though their passion might exceed their current knowledge and experience)… and have a plan to sustain the momentum moving forward.


Mitch Joel

#8 and #9 clarify why there was no delivery at my office this week Brendan :)

All kidding aside, it’s actually the group at H&K that make the event special. It’s a tremendous team and I thank you for allowing me to play a small piece in this first-ever meet-up.




Ah, but Mitch you should have seen the creativity… it was awe-inspiring!… And yours is on it’s way.

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