Careers at Q1 ProductionsConference Program Manager
The Role of the Conference Program Manager at Q1 Productions
The primary goal and responsibility of Q1 Productions Conference Program Managers is to develop the course content of conference programs for the life science industry. This is achieved during a 6 week process during which there are several key stages: online research, phone interviews, program writing, and the invitation and confirmation of speakers for the agenda.
At the start of the process, the director will provide Program Managers with a topic brief that will help to guide the Program Manager through the topic they will be focusing on for that particular conference. Within the topic brief will be a brief description of the goals of the conference; what topics should potentially be discussed, the types of companies and individuals from those companies that should participate as well as links to other sources for information such as competitive events, articles, whitepapers and presentations.
From the topic brief, the program manager will then start online research, where they aim to develop a contact list of individuals relevant for the program. These individuals will form the base of contacts that the program manager will reach out to during their production cycle, for conducting research interviews, as well as for potential speaker invitations and marketing campaigns.
Phone interviews will then be conducted for two-to-three weeks, during which time the Program Manager will conduct interview with upward of 50 individuals from the industry, on questions related to the central themes and educational objectives of the conference. Through the phone interviews, topics will be identified, discussed and developed; speakers, companies and industry leaders will also be identified and contacted. After speaking to a wide variety of stakeholders that are involved in the industry related to a specific topic, there will be many sessions that will have been identified as important for the industry to discuss during the conference.
As the Program Manager sorts through the many topics that have been discussed, they will be able to identify the most critical challenges for the industry, and those will be developed into the content for the program. The Program Manager authors 16-18 topic discussions that will serve as abstracts for the conference program. Upon completion of the written program, the Program Manager and director discuss all of the topics, going through an editing process; assuring that topics encapsulate the challenges for the industry, utilize industry jargon, and are in a logical and progressive order. This is formatted into a brochure that is then sent out with formal speaker invitations (via email) to a first, second and third round of potential speakers.
As speakers confirm to their various sessions, the final brochure is then developed and upon completion is finalized and a put out to the market. In launching our products out into the market, the Program Manager develops an encompassing topic brief that will act as a guide for the sales people as they learn about the new program. The brief is then delivered to the sales team in conjunction with the sales manager and Division Director.
All Conference Program Manager report to either the Division Director or Managing Director. An intermediary position also exists, in the role of the Senior Program Managers on the team. At this time, there are two Division Directors leading the team, an Associate Director responsible for Content & Editing, a Senior Program Manager and positions for 8 Program Managers. The entire team is led by the Managing Director of Life Science Product.
KEY QUALITIES OF A CONFERENCE PROGRAM MANAGER
- Strong communication skills, both verbal and written
- Research skills, both online and verbal research
- Interest and curiosity in learning about new topics / industries
- Analytical skills enabling transfer of skills and knowledge from program to program
- Ability to meet deadlines and manage various projects concurrently
- Professional attitude and on-site networking skills
KEY BENEFITS OF THE PROGRAM MANAGER POSITION
- Regular changes to the types of projects you’re working on
- Ability to make strong contacts within a variety of industries
- Regular contact with senior level executives
- Travel to attend your conferences and meet with speakers & sponsors