Organising Events

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Note: This is an opinion piece, not official policy. Mouse (talk) 13:20, 21 September 2016 (UTC)

Running Events At The Hackspace

So you want an event to happen? Here are some strategies for having your wish become a reality:

  • If you want it to happen, make it happen - be the person driving it - don't just say "this event would be nice", and expect other people to do all the work
  • Don't spend too long trying to gauge interest - just organise the event and see who comes rather than wringing your hands about it - sure ask if people would be interested, but don't then wait for ages.
  • Have a clear vision for what the event is and how it works, and be able to describe succinctly
  • Don't worry too much about finding a date when everyone can come - you won't find one!
    • It's good to agree a date with key collaborators if you have some (Doodle is good for this)
    • find a date which is good for you and set it, and stick to it
    • If people are really interested, they can probably shuffle their calendar, or maybe come to the next one
    • However, do check the date doesn't clash with a regular event. Wednesday evenings are generally busy because of open night. Regular events happen on other evenings, but are generally limited to specific sections of the space (e.g. trustee meetings in the blue room some Tuesdays, old time music in the comfy area on Mondays etc.).
  • Promote your event! This cannot be stressed enough. You have to communicate with people that it's happening, when it's happening, and then do all that again the next three times you see them
    • talk to people about your event
      • Don't collar them and force them to commit to coming
      • Talk about the thing and why it's good and try to enthuse people
    • Facebook may be Satan's own website, and you might have all sorts of reasons to dislike it, but it's a REALLY good tool for organising and promoting events
    • Print flyers and give them to people - don't just leave them in a stack on the comfy area table
    • Get something put in the newsletter (this needs to be organised well in advance)
    • Write on dry-wipe boards
    • Message the mailing list
    • Message on Slack
  • If you want to run a regular event, be consistent. Turn up. Every time. Even if nobody else confirms they are coming.
  • Don't be butt-hurt if nobody turns up
    • Half the people who say they'd be interested are probably just being polite and won't come
    • People have stuff to do, and social phobias to service
    • Don't chew people out for not coming
    • Next time do better at promoting your event and making it something people want to attend
  • Plan to clear up properly
    • Do a sweep for mugs and plates and such, load the dishwasher and run it
    • You can probably get some people who attended your event to help, but you'll almost certainly have to be the last one finishing off
    • After your event the area you used should always be tidier and cleaner than you found it - people arriving following your event shouldn't see any fallout - just notice how clean and tidy the space is
    • If your event caused and bins to fill up, empty them and take the bags to the dumpsters in the basement
    • Be the last person out, and do a final walk through the areas you used and clean away anything out of place

Nottinghack As A Venue

Nottinghack is a good venue for loads of events, for many of reasons:

  • A fair bit of space
  • Good amenities (desks, projectors, comfy seating, toilets, kitchen area, power tools)
  • Central-ish location in Nottingham
  • Proximity to Murat Food Centre!
  • Open minded attitude towards types of events
  • Ready-made audience of weirdos
  • Any member can run an event at the space