How to Organize a MUN | Pro Tips

Whether you’re a first time organizer or a MUN OC/CC veteran, this  walk-through will give you a head-start in setting up. Organize a MUN that will forever be spoken of in awed whispers.

A lot of effort goes into a smoothly executed MUN conference. The key to not failing miserably is good planning. There’s 5 things you need to nail down in the planning stage before you can really move on to everything else when you organize a MUN.

(For an unbelievably detailed guide that will take you through every step in detail check out the UN’s outreach page)

Committees

Grab a paper for some rough math. Have a rough estimate of the number of delegates you’re expecting. Make sure you have the resources to pull off enough committees to accommodate all of them.

Figure out which committees you’d like to include. There’s the crowd favourites; DISEC, ECOSOC, UNHRC. Then there’s the exciting ones; the G20s, G8s, Bilderberg Conference.

Topics

Now that you have your councils in place, you need to figure out the agenda and topics for each committee. While contemporary councils are in the green, keep in mind that there’s been at least a couple of hundred MUNs that have had the same Historic Council topics you immediately thought of. Put some thought into it.

Executive Board

Decide your Secretary General, Deputy Secretary, Chargé DFS, USG and other main conference staff. You probably know your stuff, but just in case, make sure they’re experienced, well versed in UN norms and do NOT have to be part of your organizing school / university. A built-in BS recognition system is generally a massive plus.

You can also invite applications for the EB once you’re sure about the conference and begin PR work.

Press

Those smooth reading conference newsletters need a great Press team. Find a seasoned IP Head and an Editor in Chief. They’ll probably have some good ideas about the who they want in the team.

Spend some time with the Press and finalize a good coverage plan. This is sure to save a lot of headache later.

 Awards

Decide on your awards for the conference at this stage. The delegates don’t need the motivation, but it helps. You may be tempted to go overboard with the prize money. Go right for it.  

Schedule

Yes, you need one. Right now is good.


Procedure

Decide on the procedure you want to follow and make sure you send it across to the delegates. You can choose between HMUN procedure, THIMUN, GMUN or even come up with your own. Not recommended for first timers, though. It’s a bit finicky.

Study Guides

This is more of an EB thing. But it still needs to feature on your checklist. Your EB needs to finalize the background guides for their committee topics. It falls to you to send it over to the delegates. Well in time.


Marketing

This, preferably, should be taken care of before the content work. Your conference should be marketed and sold as fast and hard as possible. Go social, post awesome updates and try to reach as many delegates as possible.

There isn’t anything as important as this- after the main, conference related stuff, of course. If nothing else, it pretty much determines the kind of delegates and sponsors the next time. The good delegates go for the good conferences.

Invitations

Invitations to schools, colleges and universities must be sent out early. This may not have to be in parallel with your content details. Those can be updated later. Make sure your delegates have enough time to plan, persuade/coerce their institutions and prepare.


Day Before Event

Training workshops for the EB (even though they usually don’t need it), training workshops for the delegates and admin is also something you need to look into. But most conferences do very well without as well.

You should have fixed the organizational details a long, really long time ago. Now is when you focus on getting things ready. Allocations, Infrastructure, Stationary, Newsletter printing and maybe a photographer. Scratch that, definitely a photographer.

Professional photographs are much better than you experimenting with your smartphone’s exposure settings and awkward Photoshop hacks.


Pro Tips

Stick to the schedule like… something unsavoury. There is nothing more frustrating than delays and while it can’t be helped on occasion, get the rest right.

Opening ceremonies give the delegates a pretty good idea of what to expect. If you have people dashing around every couple of minutes for something, don’t. Be professional, prepare for the ceremony in advance and keep a cool head.

Closing ceremonies are a little trickier. Especially if you have a dignitary for the speech and awards. Have everything prepared and ready including details like some extra water bottles for your guest and the awards arranged in the right order. Small details matter.

Post-Meals and Socials moods are very good indicators of a job well done. Be careful while planning those. Try not to improvise too much. Keep a medical team on hand. Nosebleeds, dizzy spells and dead faints are a lot more common than you might have thought. And a handful of ice can only take you so far.


Analysis

Treat your Delegate and EB feedback like the commandments. They have to be implemented as far as possible in your next conference. Take the time and put in the effort to go through all of them. While you can leave out some of the more ridiculous suggestions, it’s a safe bet that the EB feedback is a goldmine of relevant information.

This should be enough to get you a fairly good conference. Just remember, when in doubt, it’s better to ask someone. Even if it’s a delegate. Experience goes a long way in these things.
Feature image credit: static.wixstatic.com

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