With COVID-19 largely behind us, most countries around the world are adapting to the new normal. The economy is recovering, trade is flowing once again and tourism is bouncing back. With that comes the need to organize seminars, conferences and workshops. But what many of our clients told us they were struggling with in the new normal, is the ability to keep events within the planned time slot. Events that were planned for 2 hours often run for 2.5 to 3 hours, while events that were supposed to end at noon often cut into the participants’ lunch period. How can we make sure interpretation events run according to schedule while maintaining the same quality and professionalism? In this article, we share some tips to prevent events from running over time.
PLAN BY THE MINUTE
As the event organizer, you should create an agenda for your event like the one above, with time precise to the minutes for each activity. The activity could be a presentation, a welcoming speech, a video, or others such as dances, lotteries or Q&A sessions. For multilingual event where you have simultaneous interpreters, it is a good idea to denote the language of each activity and the name of the interpreter in charge. You should also think of adding a buffer zone (around 1 minute) between each activity to account for unexpected mic, speaker, or computer issues.
HELP SPEAKERS STICK TO THE SCHEDULE
Speakers (aka presenters) are the stars of your event. They are also the greatest source of risk when it comes to keeping a tight schedule. Some speakers do not prepare the materials adequately, stick to the script, or watch out for the time. To help speakers stick to the schedule, you should allocate the appropriate amount of time for his/her part. A welcoming speech should not take more than 5 minutes, while a presentation should be limited to under 45 minutes. Based on this total time limit, you can guide the speaker to prepare the appropriate number of slides. In our experience, on average it takes at least 2 minutes to present one slide, so a presentation lasting 45 minutes should not have more than 23 slides. Finally, you can prepare a plate saying “2 Minutes Left”, and show this in front of the speaker when his/her time is about to be up.
Once you have prepared your schedule, make sure you start and resume from a break by the planned time. Events where refreshments are provided in the hallway tend to make guests stay outside much longer. You can consider ringing a bell 5 minutes before your scheduled start time, closing the auditorium’s doors, or simply starting even if there are still guests outside. Finally, if a speaker runs over his/her time limit, you can interfere and move on to the next activity. Make sure you have warned speakers and participants about your strict adherence to time prior to the event’s date, or at the beginning of the event.
With the above methods, we hope that you will have a successful interpretation event and help foster the growth of your organization and community. Read more about the steps to reserve interpreter online at the Freelensia Information page. Please contact Hotline (+84) 89 933 60 85 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for advice on our services.