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Here's my step-by-step outline for spinning up a Meetup for Manager Tools in your town:

1. Find the people

2. Reach Out

3. Schedule

4. Hold

5. Follow-Up

Here we go.

1. Find the people

1.0 Announce you're scheduling a Meetup - post it on the www.manager-tools.com Meetup Forum thread for your town:

  • Let's set up a Portland area meetup.  If interested, send me a private email here on the board and include your email address.

1.2. go to the Linked In group for Manager Tools:

1.2.1. Post the same basic announcement as above, in the group:

  •  (if I could find that link it would totally be here)

 

2. Reach Out

Having posted the call for interest, now send direct messages, asking them their level of general interest.

2.1. go through the old messages in the thread in this forum related to your town -- mine was Portland, OR -- and send private messages to the most recent 20-30 posters (if there are that many):

  • Let's set up a Portland area meetup.  You interested?

    Email me directly at [email protected] - thanks.

     -Tom

2.2. Use the 'people search' function of Linked In to only show you Group members in your town

  • Group > Members > Advanced Search > Location

2.3. Send these people messages with the link to your group posting ("Share" the posting and pick those people as the recipients -- Linked In may limit how many you can send.)

 

3. Schedule

Now get into dialog, find people who want to help you, and schedule the event.

3.0. Pick a spot that's quiet enough to talk in, easy to get to, well lit and business casual.  Don't go down a rat-hole picking the date and time and location -- as organizer, you may just have to pick something.

3.1. use a free service like Event Brite (paid, but hosts free events for free) to manage the RSVPs:

3.2. Post the Eventbrite link back over on Linked In and in the M-T Meetup Forum:

3.3 Direct e-mail everybody you've contacted with that link.  Use the Event Brite tools for managing mailings.  Share the work with others in the group who expressed interest -- is there a 'cast for delegating work to a peer? -- don't carry the load yourself.

 

4. Hold the Event

Show up with the printed sign-in sheet from Event Brite, or just use their mobile app to check people in.

Have an agenda -- this is a meeting, after all.  Here's the one I used (as best I recall):

4.1. Share one good thing happening in your life, that you feel comfortable sharing with this group

4.2. Round robin, how much are we each using M-T? When and where did we start?

4.3. Best experience we've each had

4.4. Where we could use some help

4.5 Further ideas for outreach, when to meet next

 

5. Follow-Up

5.1 send an e-mail thank-you to attendees, and a 'sorry we missed you' note to respondents who RSVP'd but didn't make it.

5.2. Link via Linked-In with the attendees you particularly liked -- no you don't have to link with everybody, nor should you

5.3 Work to schedule the next one in 1-2 months as desired

 

Lather, rinse, repeat.

Anandha's picture

Wow, that's pretty detailed. The London version is a little simpler - post on forum, send email, meet-up, eat, drink, be merry. I might give your version a go sometime.. :) Thanks. Anandha 

tbcox's picture

You've got 112 people to draw from, and in Portland there's 63, so we have to work a little harder. ;-)  Plus you've got I think a track record of successful events, whereas we're trying to start from zero.

Plus, there's a certain enjoyment in providing a Horstman style how-to.

  - Tom Cox
www.TomOnLeadership.com

RDHodgson's picture

As someone with a mixed history in event planning I'd just add: Follow up is HUGE. Failure of attendance usually comes down to poor follow up. Chasing people up. Reminding them. Letting them know it's next month, next week, tomorrow, with briefer communications each time (you don't want to be hammering them with big emails closer to the event). It keeps the event present in their mind, but also communicates seriousness: "I care about this, I'd like to see you there, this is happening".

---

Rory

6147

tbcox's picture

Rory --

Outstanding point. Thank you. 

(Another reason I like the Event Brite platform -- it automates at least some of the reminder process, so followups are easier.)

  - Tom Cox
www.TomOnLeadership.com

stenya's picture

... especially the Agenda part! Looks like we have some percolating interest in a Chicago-area meeting, so your list might help get us rolling.

Thanks for taking the time to type it all out. :-)

Best,

Chris

stenya's picture

darn double post.