Backward Counting
Backward Counting


How far in advance should you begin planning your new exhibit for your next trade show? At Exhibit Network, we answer this question with a tried-and-true project management principle called Backward Counting. You start with the date the show begins and count backward for all the tasks needed to get your new exhibit to the show on time. Obviously, each project has its own unique timeline, and some tasks can be performed simultaneously. We generally exclude weekends and holidays to avoid OT hours.

For this example, you need a new 20 x 20 custom exhibit for a show that opens October 3, 2016. Your Backward Counting will look something like this:

SAMPLE TIMELINE

  • Show opens:       1 day               Oct  3
  • Install:               3 days              Sep 30 – Oct 2
  • Shipping:            3 days             Sep 26 – 29
  • Prep for shipping:    2 days        Sep 22 – 23
  • Build crates:            6 days        Sep 14 – 21
  • Order show services:            3 days             Sep 14 – 16
  • Fabricate custom exhibit:      21 days           Aug 23 – Sep 20
  • Produce graphics:                7 days             Sep 9 – Sep 20
  • Create graphic artwork:       14 days           Aug 29 – Sep 8
  • Purchase raw materials:        6 days           Aug 15 – 22
  • Approve estimate:                 2 days           Aug 11 – 12
  • Approve exhibit design:         2 days           Aug 10 – 11
  • Design exhibit/revisions:     14 days           Jul 22 – Aug 10
  • Meet with design team:        2 days           Jul 20 – 21
  • Finalize strategy:                  14 days         Jun 30 – Jul 20
  • Meet with Exhibit Network:    1 day           Jun 27

How far in advance should you begin planning your new exhibit for your next trade show? In the scenario above, you should begin meeting with your exhibit house to discuss your preliminary strategy no later than June 27, 2016. Of course, if you can start the process earlier, all the better. At Exhibit Network, we will provide an individualized Backward Counting schedule based on your unique project to help keep everyone on track and to eliminate last-minute rush and OT charges.

Contact Exhibit Network today to begin your custom exhibit design, and may all your trade shows be shamelessly awesome.

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    3434 Lang Rd.
    Houston, TX 77092
    Phone: 713.290.1212
    Fax: 713.290.1515
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