The Day After: 4 Things You Need to Do When the Big Event is Over

Were you seeking an Election Day 2012 political blog analyzing voting trends and demographic patterns to deduce changes in red states and blue states?

If so, sorry to disappoint. I leave that to political junkies.

Many professionals in business and talent management have “the day after” a big event at work, even when no candidate participates. It arrives in the form of the day after:

  • Training we organized (or led);
  • Off-sites we facilitated;
  • Reward and recognition events we program managed;
  • Other special events we orchestrated.

4 things to after the big event is over

‘How many of these can you relate to? I spoke with a friend named Ashley last weekend who was involved in a big exhibit at the State Fair of Texas. Now that the fair is over, she and her husband are headed out of town on vacation. She said she felt like she had not seen him in weeks!

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What actions do you need to take when a big event, like #ElectionDay2012, is over?

  • Take time to recover. My friend Ashley has the right idea. You may need to take some time off. If you can’t go on a vacation, some comp time away from the office, at a minimum, may be in order. Your mind and your body need a chance to unwind. Otherwise, when you pile event on top of event, eventually a ball gets dropped.
  • Act on the follow-up items identified during the event. What pictures need to be posted on the company’s intranet site? What internal employee communications articles need submitting ASAP for timeliness’ sake? What questions from the Parking Lot flip chart need chasing down? Letting these items linger hurts your credibility.
  • Above all, thank the team who helped make it happen. It takes a village, as the saying goes. Election Day-sized events are never possible due to a single person. Your personal word of encouragement goes a LONG way. Even if you publicly thanked those involved during the event, ensure you send follow up messages in writing and CC all of the most visible stakeholders. In the end, when your team looks good, you look good.
  • Learn from the experience. After a little time has gone by (truly a little – not weeks or months), sit down with those closest to the event and talk through what to stop/start/continue. Even if the event does not take place every year, or if you do not anticipate managing it in the future, documenting the learnings helps those who follow you in years to come. Pay it forward.

This was originally published on PeopleResult’s Current blog.

Betsy Winkler is Partner at PeopleResults a human capital consultancy focusing on change, organization, talent and communications/new media. She has been working as a business consultant and change leader for 20 years, and previously led the Change Leadership Center of Excellence for PepsiCo.

Contact her at bwinkler@people-results.com.

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