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Official Unofficial Meetup March 2k17 Feedback

Hey everyone!
I wanted to say a big, massive thank you to everyone who popped into Birmingham to see us this weekend. Everyone I've spoken to has said that they had an amazing day, and several of us also had a rather brilliant night too afterwards.

But! Everything has to end, and afterwards comes the evaluation and stuff. What did we do well? What didn't we do well (and we have a few inklings about this)? What can we do better?

I'm gonna borrow a format that I've seen used elsewhere, in the form of "Hots and Nots". Basically, bullet points under the titles "Hots", and "Nots". Hots are good, nots are bad. It's generally preferable to give pointers of things we can actually work on, but anything is taken under consideration! Mostly...

So! It goes something like this:

* Meeting lots of people for the very first time. Yay. :3
* Being back in my home city for the first time in a long time.
* Matt mentioning an all-you-can-eat Chinese restaurant, having a gut feeling that it was one I visited as a kid with my dad regularly.
* Gut feeling being, yet again, correct.
* Marriott hotel.

* People having to leave early for various reasons. Boo. 3:
* Being late, due to living so far away and not driving.
* Not getting a chance to deal with my personal errands Sunday morning.
* Forgetting my favourite drink makes my stomach disagree with me.
* Travel sickness. Not helped by the above point.
* Lots of wandering before lunch.


  • ThyPirateDaveThyPirateDave South Wales
    edited March 2017
    * Got to meet @Lennon off-of the BBC
    * Got to Pirate that joke from @Henchman
    * Vast majority of arrangements were bang on, especially helpful for avoiding large fees in terms of parking etc (Thanks @Zapto )
    * All you can eat made it easier in terms of no large orders we had to wait for
    * No one was left behind, everyone made the effort to regroup when some got lost or arrived later than others
    * Generally good feedback and exposure online
    * Nobody died

    * Some transport costs could have been lower with car pooling but other engagements prevented it
    * Herding cats when walking from one location to another. People got lost, didn't stay together and went to the wrong location.
    * Two people called Jason. Someone needs to change their name or one walks the plank
    * Not enough pictures of the event is the feedback I've got - we're appearing camera shy
    * Mortals didn't worship me - not even a small statue in my honour

    All in all I give it a solid 4/5, especially seeing as the first national meet up is more about us actually just meeting, talking in person and generally getting along. I don't want to down play how important it was and is that we can enjoy what we do and I think forming such relationships go a long way towards being able to respectfully disagree with one another at times... in the past I've seen first hand that distant relationships can lead to fracturing in the party. I'm really glad the majority of the questions were less "You need to fix X" and were more "How can we help with X".

    A very successful meet up in my humble opinion.
  • Hots
    * Got to put faces to names of non-London peeps finally.
    * No-one got arrested
    * No-one died
    * Food was good
    * Dave said "boyo" in the flesh. It was as Welsh as I'd expected.
    * Initial RV was straightforward, and wasn't much time spent waiting for others
    * Nice pictures of the flag at the Queen Vic statue
    * Generally well planned
    * Some of the locals asked about us.
    * Good chat generally
    * Virgin Trains is pretty pleasant, if I'm heading out of London, Birmingham and Manchester work really well for me as locations to get to.

    * Food planning should have been done in advance, ultimately we ended up at an all-you-can-eat that hasn't yet given me food poisoning, so I think we're all good
    * Ditto above on not sticking together whilst in transit, though ultimately we should pick venues in advance and not move around too much in the future
    * Dave could have sold the party a bit more (or at all) to those that asked questions :tongue:
    * Weren't really set up to do the keysharing we discussed briefly before the meet, some managed to share keys successfully, most didn't.
    * Didn't feel like we actually talked about the Party that much
    * Those leaflet boxes are bloody heavy, wasn't really expecting to be taking one home :(

    Overall agreed on it being a success. @Zapto's earmarking October for a London meet to follow up, so we've got some planning time if we want to improve next time.
  • ThyPirateDaveThyPirateDave South Wales
    edited March 2017
    For what it's worth I agree I think I could have sold the party a bit more. I found it easier selling a campaign as a candidate but selling the party is something a touch different that I need to be better ready for. I excel at this kind of conversation with press or 1-2-1 normally but wasn't prepared for meet and greet with the public on this day - the two opportune moments to do some intro were once at the statue and once at the second pub.

    At the statue I probably should have focused more on getting new individual people's attention rather than trying to organise people/advertisement. I did try to encourage a group photo and get our flags out/signs up and I was more concerned with people finding us and general exposure, which on reflection I think I should have left for anyone else. I did stand forward at first, instead of around the back with a flag but when @momentoftop arrived and mentioned we didn't have flags up, I moved to solve that issue and it became a case of not being able to solve that and speak to the person that said hello.

    At the second pub, by this time I had carried a full box along the train trip, to the statue, from the statue to the pub, from the pub around looking for food, from food to second pub, almost always carrying a full box, so others wouldn't be stuck with them and I needed to sit down. I was also pretty exhausted with a physically labour-some job the day prior and having to arrive earlier than everyone else. I honestly couldn't hear most of what was being said across the table so just handed down a leaflet (much like I couldn't hear anything on the other side of the all-you-can-eat table) but again put the signs in the window for general exposure.

    I did hand out a few leaflets out on the walk around with attempted conversation openers, despite it being quite difficult to do in a city with everyone being ready to reject/ignore with the high number of canvassers cities attract, back when my energy levels were still reasonably high.

    I did take the advice given at the meet up however when door-knocking came up. I spoke to someone on the doorstep today briefly in Barry, so don't feel the feedback is being ignored :)

    P.S. boyo
  • Haha.

    Yeah, I think that's another pointer for the next meetup. If we're in London next time, @Zapto and myself should probably organise on the day (presuming we can both make it) and yourself @Lennon should be our "sell the Party" guys, or something like that.
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