Research Summary

A surprisingly large number of surveyed attendees report that speakers are often more focused on what they want to say than what attendees want to learn.

Sched is an event scheduling software platform that has hosted over 25,000 events. Sched conducts a monthly survey of attendees across all of its events to better understand their experience and seek their advice for ways that event planners can design better events.

Attendees told Sched:

  • “Teach us what we want to learn” said one recent attendee to a professional development conference. 
  • “We don’t want to hear speakers tooting their own horn. We want them to focus on their content,” said another.
  • Many felt like Speakers, in general, are not as well organized as the conference overall.

While there is clearly an opportunity to improve, overall Attendees are happy with the efforts that go into event planning.

How was the overall quality of your conference?

  • 47% of attendees said the conference was “about what they expected.”
  • 44% felt their conference delivered more than they expected.
  • 8% said that their planners under-performed to their expectations.

How effectively was the event scheduled?

  • Less than 26% felt that the conference had either too much or too little content
  • A whopping 74% felt the scheduling was right. 

How critical is a moderator? 

  • 46% reported that the role of the moderator is critical to a good conference
  • Only 12% felt like the moderator role is either rarely or never critical.

How many speakers should a session have?

  • Only 20% of attendees think that a single speaker in a session is ideal.
  • 60% of attendees prefer 2 or 3 presenters per session.
  • Another 20% felt that 4 or more made for the perfect session.

How was the pace of the sessions you attended?

One of the biggest challenges for speakers is to determine the appropriate pace for the audience.

  • The good news is that over 69% felt like the pace of their sessions was just right. 
  • Of those that weren’t happy with the pace, most wished that everything moved faster (19%) as opposed to slower (10%).

 

About Sched

Sched was founded in 2008 and has hosted over 10 million attendees on events on Sched’s event management program. Sched surveys event attendees on a monthly basis in order to help guide event planners on delivering great events.