Local chapter update: Miscellaneous tips for in-person events

CDI Strategies - Volume 12, Issue 49

The last two weeks in CDI Strategies, the ACDIS team has offered tips for local chapter leaders regarding introducing speakers, keeping time, handling late registrations, and providing registration desk clarification at in-person events.

This week, we have a few more tips as you gear up for your fall and winter CDI festivities. 

People will complain about the temperature. They always will. Don’t make yourself crazy trying to adjust it. As soon as you turn it up or down, someone else will complain. Simply, let them know that you, as a volunteer, have no control over the temperature and that you’re sorry for their discomfort. Remind attendees ahead of the program to bring a sweater and dress in layers for their own comfort.

People will complain about the food or make special requests related to their dietary restrictions. Do not try to accommodate these on-the-spot, the day of the event. Simply let them know that as a volunteer, you did your best to provide a wide selection of nutritious dietary options. In the future, if the attendee can let you know at least a week in advance of the event leaders might be able to accommodate these needs but clearly outline what is available and where individuals can find alternative food options nearby.

People will try to leave early. This is a tricky situation. During your announcements inform the group that they must be in attendance for the entire event to obtain their CE credit. If someone has to leave and disrupts the meeting, ask them to email you directly after the event to try to accommodate them.

It doesn’t happen often however, if a participant interrupts or disagrees with a presenter, leaders need to step firmly forward and take control of the situation. Let the individual know that their thoughts are welcome, but that time is limited. Keep this script in your back pocket:  We really appreciate your opinion, and this is a fascinating interaction, but we want to let our speaker finish the presentation.

If anyone is generally unhappy about the quality of the presentations, food, venue, or other items, don’t take it to heart but take it as an opportunity to enlist additional assistance and bring others into the leadership role. Try this script: Wow, you know that’s too bad that you feel that way. The leadership team is composed of volunteers who put a lot of thought and energy into the event. Perhaps you’d like to join us on one of our planning calls and help us make the next event even better.

The following is a list of upcoming events for ACDIS local chapters. If you have an upcoming event you would like to include, please email Melissa Varnavas (mvarnavas@acdis.org) and Linnea Archibald (larchibald@acdis.org).




  • The Suffolk County Long Island ACDIS chapter meets Monday, December 3, 9:30-11:30 a.m., at Stony Brook University Hospital in Stony Brook. For information, contact the chapter leadership team (scacdis@gmail.com).
  • The Maryland ACDIS chapter meets Wednesday, December 7, 12-2 p.m., at the Maryland Hospital Association in Elkridge. For information, contact Candace Blankenship (cblanke4@jhmi.edu).