The 411

Date not set.
8:45 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.

CEC Training Facility
1900 Merivale Road, Suite 206
Ottawa, ON K2G 4N4

$675 (+hst)
Discounts available.

Registration Closed

Meet Instructor

Carl Martin

Carl Martin

Carl Martin is a fluently bilingual strategic communications and marketing specialist with experience in a wide range of areas including issues management, media relations, special events and brand development and management.

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"Very interactive and kept us participating until the end"

"It was a small group so the focus was good"

"The casual atmosphere provided for a very good learning experience"

"The instructor provided relevant, interesting examples to help you understand"



Special events are opportunities to engage stakeholders and communicate face-to-face with key target audiences. A special event is one of the most direct and personal forms of communication resulting in greater transparency and accountability - increasingly critical considerations in the public sector environment. Events can also be complex and labour-intensive undertakings fraught with challenges that can affect the brand and reputation of an organization and its relations with stakeholders. The execution of a successful internal or external event requires strategic and systematic planning based on realistic results and a sound understanding of an organization's environment, stakeholders and audiences. This workshop outlines a step-by-step approach to high-level events planning and execution. It is designed for communications practitioners and others in the public sector who are tasked with planning and implementing - possibly working with contractors - various types of high-level events, including program launches, consultations, ministerial announcements, townhalls and others.




8:45 - 9:00 Introductions and Workshop Overview
9:00 - 9:45 The High Level Event and its Success Factors
  • Overview of different types of events
  • Taking the strategic approach
  • Questions to answer before starting
10:00 - 10:15 Break
10:15 - 11:30 Planning for a Successful Event
  • Criteria for a successful event
  • Planning for realistic results
  • What are the drivers for the event?
  • Situational analysis - outlining risks and opportunities
  • Who does what? Assigning roles and responsibilities to organizing committee members, as well as the allocation of limited resources
  • Determining the scope of the event: what are the key considerations e.g., horizontality and inter-departmental coordination, determining participants and guests, choosing the right venue, visuals, scenario, speeches, protocol and the approval process, promotion, printed materials, media, etc.
11:30 - 12:30 Exercise: Developing the Elements of an Event Plan
Participants working in groups will develop the framework for a special event which outlines desired outcomes, a brief situational analysis, target audiences, roles and responsibilities and a preliminary event scenario. Each group will be asked to present its event plan and scenario.
12:30 - 13:30 Lunch
13:30 - 14:30 Executing the Event: Dos and Don'ts
  • Developing an event checklist
  • Tools and resources for a successful event
  • Best approaches for on-site management of an event and risk mitigation (a.k.a. "The importance of having a Plan B")
  • Working with the media
14:30 - 14:45 Break
14:45 - 15:30
Leveraging and Evaluating the Impact of the Event
  • Strategies and methods to extend the reach of the event
  • Methods to measure the outcome of the event
15:30 - 16:15 Exercise: Executing and Leveraging the Event
Participants working in groups will develop a customized event checklist and outline a brief strategy for extending the reach of their event. Each group will be asked to present its checklist and leverage plan.
16:15 - 16:30 Wrap-up and Evaluation
Participants will complete a short evaluation.