Navigating the Waters of International Events

When you decide to host an event outside the U.S. it’s important that the location aligns with the goals and objectives of your company or organization. Once the location has been chosen, the planning process becomes all about managing the logistics.

When faced with new cultural and business practices even the most seasoned planners will have challenges. Contracts are termed differently, body language may be confusing, and local holiday observations can put a halt to your event altogether. airplane

Here are a few tips I think you will find useful when it comes to planning a successful international meeting.

Build Relationships

~ Local contacts can help you navigate language and cultural gaps.

~ Mutually beneficial relationships enable a smoother planning process by putting you in touch with quality local vendors. handshake

~ Your local contacts can also help interpret nonverbal clues and spoken language. “Yes”, may not mean “yes” in another country.

Research Local Customs

~ Work days and business hours vary from country to country. Many Middle Eastern countries work Sunday through Thursday. middle eastern collage

~ Develop your events agenda around the local hours to prevent costly overtime fees and added stress due to lack of staffing.

Expect the Unexpected 

Each country is different. What works in one country may not work in another. Be prepared to roll with the punches.

The journey of managing the logistics of an logisticsinternational event can be a personally rewarding and educational experience. Besides delivering a successful event, you will have developed new relationships and increased cultural awareness.

Have you planned an international event before? If so, what surprised you the most. If you’ve attended an international event, I’d love to know if you thought it was well planned or not. Comment below and share your experiences.