Nigel Collin asks what if Han Solo was a conference organiser?

During a conversation with my daughter about how ‘cool’ Han Solo is, not just in the new Star Wars movie but also the originals, it occurred to me that he actually exhibits the qualities of a really good conference organiser.

I am of course assuming you are aware of Han Solo and his adventures through the Stars Wars movies. If not, then shame, and if so then stay with me.

Although Han Solo is a bit of a rogue, and yes he was a smuggler who redeemed himself by becoming a leader of a rebellion, he also exhibits some exceptional qualities in the way he thinks and does things that make him a really good role model in business events. Let me explain.

He cares

Sure he’s gruff and a tad surly but beneath that tough exterior is a heart of gold. Han Solo cares. You need that quality in a conference organiser because if they don’t care, when the going gets tough or things don’t go to plan they won’t be there for you or go that extra mile. Han Solo will drop whatever he is doing for your event. Guaranteed.

He backs himself

Han knows his strengths. He also knows the strengths of those around him and what his team are capable of. He knows what the objective is at any given situation and what is needed to make it happen. If something goes wrong, he’ll take the rap and then fix it. As a result, he backs himself. That’s super important for a conference organiser and so you need to give them the space (excuse the pun) and resources to do what they do.

He’s great in a crisis

No matter how well you plan, things will go wrong. For Han Solo that’s a way of life as he leaps about the galaxy as crisis after crisis presents itself. He doesn’t ignore it, he doesn’t panic, he faces it and deals with it straight away. If you’re working in business events things are going to go wrong. As a conference organiser Han is your guy. He’s cool in a crisis, he stays clear headed and thinks through a problem but does it fast. And most importantly, he acts on his decision.

He’s a maverick

Although the term maverick creates spinal chills for many it’s a quality you want. Think about it. Han does things differently and he’s innovative in his approach. As our industry changes we need to find unique and fresh ways of doing things. If you’re doing things the same old way every time or never thinking creatively then you’re going to get outdone by your competition.

He’s generational

My daughter loves Han Solo. He’s managed to leap generations and appeals not only to those of my generation but to the audience of today. A good conference organiser can appeal to a number of difference audiences. They stay relevant because they listen and learn what each different group of delegates need, want and how they take things in.