This is part of a series of a posts on the art and craft of fannish volunteer-run conventions. These are my opinions and my experiences. As always, YMMV.
In my previous installment, I emphasized that a complete staff roster tells you what’s happening and who are the people making things happen. And a couple of things follow from that. Not just who’s at the top, and what organization (if any) is in charge, although that can be very revealing and should be easy to keep current year-round.
The staff roster tells you if the convention is ready to announce who they’ve picked to run something they want to have. Maybe it’s someone you know and it’s an area you’d want to help with. Or, it could have no announced people and there’s a chance they might like you to take charge of it.
(Sometimes the staff list will even list subcontractors, like “Badge production: Admit One.” If you like the plastic badges the convention had, and you’re in charge of another convention, you can see who to call.)
And, of course, respect for all the people who are volunteering their time and energy. Egoboo is the coin of the realm. Recognition on the digital and printed page, that’s something you can refer back to, and it’s another way to say “thank you.”
List the names. My preference is to list people consistently. Depending on the fandom, their fan name may be how everyone knows them. (It’s amazing how many people have the same last name of “Cosplay” these days.) You want the name that they’re listed under to be how you would recognize them.
So if you’re in charge of the published staff roster, try to make it as accurate and complete as you can. I suggest putting it online as soon as you know the overall organizational structure, and fill it in as appointments and recruiting happen.
I have a few ideas about recruiting, but for now let me just say it’s important and it’s ongoing.