How to decide on the theme of your management conference

Posted by Jo Kelly

Theming a management conference can help make the event fully effective, keep the audience engaged, and help key messages stay front of mind.

So how do you decide on a management conference theme and what should you consider? This blog aims to help.

Benefits of a business conference theme

There are different ways themes can benefit your management conferences. Amongst other things, a conference theme:

  • Keeps your content interesting, gives it visual appeal, and helps with branding
  • Generates buzz ahead of the event and helps keep attendees engaged
  • Helps give speakers direction to determine the right tone and approach when presenting
  • Reinforces your key conference messages, making them more memorable and effective

With all this in mind, when choosing a theme there are different things you can do to make your conference fully effective. This includes fitting it with your: 

Business objectives

You should first think about the objectives of your conference. What are you trying to do and achieve? For instance, are you informing your company managers about new business values or motivating them to work harder? Perhaps you’re introducing a new product or a new incentive to encourage their teams to perform better.

It’s important to choose a theme that doesn’t just fit with your objectives, but lifts and emphasises them further. For example, a theme of great leaders would lift a conference about leadership, while a superhero theme could emphasise a conference about strength and power.

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Audience and their interests

It’s also important to consider your audience. For a management conference, there are likely to be different types of mangers attending. But you should also think about things like, their specific job roles, overall age groups, their life knowledge and experiences, as well as their backgrounds and interests.

For instance, a 60s theme would probably not be effective for a group of young managers in their 20s. In the same way, a wild partying theme probably wouldn’t go down well with managers approaching retirement.

Conference details

When choosing a theme, you should also think about the details of the management conference itself. This includes the length, the number of people attending and the venue.

For instance, if your conference is taking place in an average-sized room, with just a handful of managers, you shouldn’t choose an extravagant theme that includes overwhelming large decor. Here, a softer and more focused theme would probably be more effective. In contrast, a big, dramatic theme would fit better at a two-day conference with a gala dinner. 

Company, products and industry

Also think about matching your conference management theme with your company or the products or services you provide. You should also consider one that complements the industry your business operates in.

For instance, if your business is in the technology sector, a theme that fits with technological achievements might work well.

If you’ve just launched a new line of products to sell, perhaps the conference could fit with their USPs – more reliable, safer, or stronger, for instance.

See our other conference tips

Trends, popular topics and dates

It’s also a good idea to think about what’s happening when your business conference takes place. Consider news topics, historical dates and national days.

Perhaps there are popular topics developing as you plan your conference, like a focus on helping the environment. This would fit well with a theme about moving to a better future. Or perhaps it’s taking place around the time of a famous historical day, like independence day, which lends itself to a powerful theme.

Keep it simple, stick to your budget and brand

Finally, it’s important to keep your theme simple. When it comes to business conference themes, the less-is-more approach is best. You don’t want to overcomplicate it. You should aim to make it memorable and effective and prevent any miscommunication of your overall conference message.

Importantly, you should also think about your budget. If your budget is tight, for instance, you shouldn’t pick an extravagant theme that will require expensive decor. If you do have the budget to go to town with your branding, however, you should pick a theme that’s visual and easy to replicate on things like balloons, signage and invitations.

How we can help you with management conferences 

There are many factors that contribute to making a successful management conference, from the theme to topics, venues to speakers. CR Events specialises in all types of business conferences, with the key aim of helping people meet their business goals.

We’d love to help you engage, motivate and inspire your team with our innovative conference and meeting services. To speak to a member of our award-winning team:

Jo has worked at CR Worldwide as Events Operations Director since 2004. She is responsible for scoping and delivering all types of events, for clients of all sizes, globally. She manages the division’s team who organise and execute award-winning events – ranging from one-off sales floor days, corporate hospitality events and incentive travel trips, to annual conferences and partner summits.