BarCamp - How to Run Your Own/Planning

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BarCamp tends to attract a lot of people at the start, but after a while people will flake off leaving you with a core team. This is normal. There is a funnel effect to a barcamp planning. By the middle of the planning stage you will be down to a small core team. And by the time of the BarCamp, the team will be bigger with lots of volunteers.

The amount of time you take to plan a BarCamp can vary greatly, depending on the scope and scale of what you want to achieve. The vast majority of time spent organising a BarCamp is put into finding and securing sponsors. Which essentially means that the cheaper your event, the less time you need to plan. I have organised a £3000 BarCamp in 4 months, and my last BarCamp was £5000 and was done in 7 months. That being said, I never really stop planning for the next BarCamp. These timescales indicate how long before the event I start approaching sponsors, whereas in reality, I started scouting the venue for BarCamp Manchester 7 in August, one month before BarCamp Manchester 6 had even begun.

As a BarCamp organiser, it's important to realise just how much of your time is taken up by the event. Even when you are not officially sitting down to work on planning, every building you walk in to you will consider its potential as a BarCamp venue, every shop you enter could be selling potential swag, and every person you meet is a potential sponsor or attendee. When you organise a BarCamp, it can take over your entire life, and this is something you should be prepared for.